Daily Connector | Why Are You Sad, O My Soul? | Jim Leonard

Near the end of March, there was a stretch of several days when I was feeling pretty blue, and I was acting that way. 

Although I do get blue now and then, it was unusual for me to stay in a funk for several days.

“Why are downcast, O my soul?” came to mind.  Psalm 42:5-6 (NRSV) says:


Why are you cast down, O my soul,

    and why are you disquieted within me?

Hope in God; for I shall again praise him,

    my help and my God. 


(These words also appear verbatim in Psalm 42:11, and then again in Psalm 43:5.)

Pondering the “why” question of the psalmist, I was pretty sure I knew the answer:  I was very sad because everything I was learning about the pandemic was pointing to the reality that the nation’s and

the world’s most vulnerable peoples will disproportionately bear the brunt of what’s unfolding.


I wrote a short song, attached, with these faintly-rhyming words:


Why are you sad, O my soul,

And why are you so depressed?

Put your hope in God, who knows.

I’ll again praise God, my source of help.


I was in my dark mood at the time I connected with my spiritual guide. I told him what was going on.  He said, “Jim, sometimes when I’m going through a dark time, my body just needs to cry out – and

then my mind and my heart can deal with things.”  After that session, I picked up my guitar and wailed my new song loudly for 30 minutes … and the darkness disappeared.


I’m putting my hope in God, my source of help.


PS on April 17.  I am increasingly hopeful.  I see and hear signs that a great and growing number people, myself included, are not willing to go back to where the world was before the pandemic. 

Systemic change will require lots of transformed lives.  I know the first life that needs to be transformed.

Why Are You Sad, O My Soul? (score)


The CMC Connector began March 26 and will run through May 16 through the Columbus Mennonite Church office, contributors associated with the church. For more info and to sign up, go HERE.

Mim Halterman
Columbus Mennonite Church
Administrative Assistant
KCMCS Program Coordinator