Psalm 60 (Psalms on the Trail)


“O God, you have rejected us, broken our defenses;

you have been angry, now restore us!

You have shaken the earth and split it open;

repair the cracks in it, for it totters.” Psalm 60:1-2

Reflection: These are the ruins of what I remember to be an old cement company along the canal trail.  You may be able to discern the abandoned kilns in the background.  Wandering through ruins invites imagination.  I also imagine that the ruins which the psalmist once bemoaned in the verses above were the broken military defenses of a city’s walls.  But now that these psalms have been co-opted as songs of one’s heart on the faith journey, I began thinking how it is not so bad a thing for God’s Spirit to break down our self-propped, inner defenses. In fact being shaken up a bit is an almost necessary occurrence for any renewal or growth, whether in individuals or in groups.  Old walls just keep us from being honest with ourselves; they can hold us back from being channels of God’s love. And why is it that the painful places where we are shaken and cracked are exactly the kilns where God’s grace goes to work to connect us with others and grow new life in us?


1. Take this verse with you and ponder its meaning for you throughout the day.  What do you notice?  What do you wonder?  Do you have any broken defenses of cracks today?  Imagine God’s love pouring through.

2. Or read all of Psalm 60 to discover how this verse fits into the psalm or to discover a different verse.

3. Or comment with a photo of your own that illustrates this verse’s meaning for you.

Tomorrow’s verse is from Psalm 61: 1-2,4.

Starting January 1, 2016, for 150 days I am posting a daily psalm verse with a photo that is a visual meditation on the text for me.  Each day a verse from the next psalm is chosen until all 150 psalms have been featured.   To participate you may subscribe to my blog at or “friend” me on Facebook and watch for the daily links to blog posts.  Disclaimer:  I am not a photographer and most of the photos are from a cell phone or small camera while hiking the Appalachian Trail or the C&O Canal/Great Allegheny Passage Trail.


  1. “Old walls just keep us from being honest with ourselves.” I wish there were a virtual highlighter for your blog. This phrase is so rich and helpful. But hard. Perfect timing, once again.

  2. I LOVE this…this project of yours is indeed inspired, and so much a gift of the Spirit!!