Psalm 39: Landing in Trouble
Saturday, March 11, 2017
We might all pray Psalm 39 each morning in our present atmosphere of gossip, innuendo and hyperbole.
I’m determined to watch steps and tongue
so they won’t land me in trouble.
I decided to hold my tongue
as long as Wicked is in the room.
“Mum’s the word,” I said, and kept quiet.
In our current environment of fear, anger and suspicion, we return to the words of the psalmist.
But the longer I kept silence
The worse it got—
my insides got hotter and hotter.
My thoughts boiled over;
I spilled my guts.
“Tell me, what’s going on, God?
How long do I have to live?
Give me the bad news!
In our present milieu of nepotism, corruption and denial, we look for Wisdom in God’s Word.
You’ve kept me on pretty short rations;
my life is string too short to be saved.
Oh! we’re all puffs of air.
Oh! we’re all shadows in a campfire.
Oh! we’re just spit in the wind.
We make our pile, and then we leave it.
“What am I doing in the meantime, Lord?
Hoping, that’s what I’m doing – hoping
You’ll save me from a rebel life,
save me from the contempt of dunces.
I’ll say no more, I’ll shut my mouth,
since you, Lord, are behind all this.
But I can’t take it much longer.
In our current setting of despair, anxiety and distrust, we look for hope in God’s promise of justice.
When you put us through the fire
to purge us from our sin,
our dearest idols go up in smoke.
Are we also nothing but smoke?
In our present circumstances, we are honest with our Creator. We are hopeful in Christ. And we are faithful to the Spirit.
“Ah, God, listen to my prayer, my
cry – open your ears.
Don’t be callous;
just look at these tears of mine.
I’m a stranger here. I don’t know my way –
a migrant like my whole family.
Give me a break, cut me some slack
before it’s too late and I’m out of here.”
In every moment of every day, we remember that God is with us no matter our circumstance, and no matter our state of mind. We remember to trust the hand that created us, and to follow the voice that calls us.
When we use the scripture link and drop-down menus to explore other versions of this psalm, we encounter God’s real presence in our lives, especially when we find ourselves surrounded by trouble. And we encourage one another to trust the wisdom and promise of God.