Daily Office Readings for Tuesday Proper 10 of Year 1
Psalm 39: 1 – 5
1 I said, “I will keep
watch upon my ways, *
so that I do not offend with my tongue.
2 I will put a muzzle on my mouth *
while the wicked are in my presence.”
3 So I held my tongue and said nothing; *
I refrained from rash words;
but my pain became unbearable.
4 My heart was hot within me;
while I pondered, the fire burst into flame; *
I spoke out with my tongue:
5 Lord, let me know my end and the number of my days, *
so that I may know how short my life is.
Perhaps enough cannot be said about monitoring and keeping control of our mouths. James, of our New Testament, writes on this very problem. He says, “With the tongue we praise our Lord and Father, and with it we curse human beings, who have been made in God’s likeness. Out of the same mouth come praise and cursing. My brothers and sisters, this should not be. (James 3:9 – 10)
Sadly, we have devolved into a people who give adoration to those who can better curse the other. This is very sad but I as a person will do all in my power to not praise evil, retaliation, revenge, or any kind of one-ups-man-ship. Perhaps even sarcasm comes under this category. Sometimes funny isn’t funny at all.
As a child I was taught that if I couldn’t say something nice, don’t say anything at all. But from what I read of the Psalmist he couldn’t hold on. He “burst into flame and spoke out with his tongue.” I’m afraid I sometimes do the same also. I ‘m not proud of it but it happens. Sometimes when we witness stupid stuff our “pain becomes unbearable” and we shoot from the hip with reckless lips.
These misgivings and weaknesses are the sins that I ask forgiveness for every night in bed. It was St. Paul who said “That that I want to do, I don’t do, and that that I don’t want to do, I do.” (Romans 7) Dear Paul, I think I’m cut from the same cloth.
Praise God from whom all mercy flows. Thank You Jesus. John+