Happy Ash Wednesday

13 Feb

I noticed no one said this on the news this morning.  But, I will share this greeting.  Psalm 64 is attributed to David and is crying out to help from God.  I think this is appropriate for our Lenten journey; certainly we have to reach out to God if we have any hope of keeping a holy Lent.  For this psalm, the request of God is help from those who are talking destructively against the psalmist.

I wonder if you have ever felt this way?  People talking against you and looking for you to fail.  Well, if you have, this psalm is for you.

 

Listen and help, O God.
I’m reduced to a whine
And a whimper, obsessed
with feelings of doomsday.

2-6 Don’t let them find me—
the conspirators out to get me,
Using their tongues as weapons,
flinging poison words,
poison-tipped arrow-words.
They shoot from ambush,
shoot without warning,
not caring who they hit.
They keep fit doing calisthenics
of evil purpose,
They keep lists of the traps
they’ve secretly set.
They say to each other,
“No one can catch us,
no one can detect our perfect crime.”
The Detective detects the mystery
in the dark of the cellar heart.

I like the line, “They keep fit doing calisthenics of evil purpose.”  I have know a few people like this, and mostly I have felt sorry for them and tried to pray for them.  It is a sad life that denies the hope, grace and creative power of God.  These types of folks can bring pain and hurt into our lives.  But, the psalmist looks to God for hope.

7-8 The God of the Arrow shoots!
They double up in pain,
Fall flat on their faces
in full view of the grinning crowd.

9-10 Everyone sees it. God’s
work is the talk of the town.
Be glad, good people! Fly to God!
Good-hearted people, make praise your habit.

Being the old woman that I am, I know the truth of these last verses.  God doesn’t even need to shoot the arrows – life gets these mean spirited people in the end.  I have seen their lives implode with negativity they have tried to spread to others.

Mostly, just “fly to God”, and make praise your habit.  I find the truth is that, you can’t change what people are going to say about you, and if people are going to believe the worst, Oh well, there’s is nothing you can do about that either.  But, you can spend your life doing the best you can to live with integrity and praising God.

Enjoy this first day of Lent.

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One Response to “Happy Ash Wednesday”

  1. Phyllis Terwilliger February 19, 2013 at 4:59 pm #

    Mary,

    Lent is one of my favorite church seasons. I liked your comment that you can spend your life doing the best you can to live with integrity and praising God. AMEN!!

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