Saturday Psalm #73

Surely, God, you are good to your people,
to those who are pure in heart,
and even to me, though my feet are prone to slip,
and I am frequently on the edge.

I admit my envy of the arrogant
and my frustration at the easy lives of the wicked.

They seem to have no struggles;
they sow bitterness and reap sweetness.

They seem free from the burdens I bear;
they don't have to put up with the crap I do.

They adorn themselves with pride
and clothe themselves with discord.

They expect perfection from others
while they are blind to the darkness of their own hearts.

They treat others with ungrace and unforgiveness,
while they condemn the best intentions of others.

They talk as if they are wise
and everyone else is stupid.

And of course people listen to them,
lapping up their lies and distortions like thirsty dogs.

Do they really believe you don't see,
that you, the Most High, lack knowledge?

They must: and not without reason, apparently,
for you seem happy to let them prosper.

It all makes me feel at times like I have kept my heart pure for no good reason,
like I have devoted myself to your will and work in vain.

I am besieged by complainers and critics.
Every morning someone says "we need to meet."

I can't even be honest with them, Lord,
for that would simply add offense to offense
and cause them to call me defensive or recalcitrant.

No matter how hard I try to get a godly perspective on all this,
it oppresses me,
until I turn my eyes on you
and focus on "this one thing I do."

I'm not here for the approval of others, Lord,
and I know enough to assume there will be opposition and misunderstanding.

As a dream when one awakes,
so when you arise in my heart and mind, O Lord.

You alone can assuage my loneliness;
your presence is a balm to my hurting heart.

Therefore I turn to you once more;
hold me by my right hand.

Guide me with your counsel,
and show me your glory.

Whom have I in heaven but you?
And I desire nothing on earth besides you.

My flesh and my heart may fail,
but you are the strength of my heart
and my portion forever.

Those who are far from you
are your problem, not mine.
Those who taunt and attack your servants
will be called before your court.

But as for me, I will focus on staying near you, God.
I will make the Sovereign LORD my refuge;
I will boast only in you.

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