T.S. Eliot began his poem East Coker with “in my beginning is my end” and concluded it with, “in my end is my beginning.”
When I read Psalm 19, I try not to hurry to the end, but I usually do because it’s my beginning.
Let the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be acceptable to you, O LORD, my rock and my redeemer.
Yes, all the words before the final verse are powerful and eloquent. As with all 150 Psalms, I am forever amazed at how these ancient phrases, written thousands of years ago by persons with daily experiences alien to my twenty-first century world, speak to me. The Psalms are like fingers wagging in my face, hands slapping my back, arms enveloping my shoulders, palms pressed together in prayer, fists threatening my complacency, shouts waking me up, and silences urging my attention to the movement of the Holy. What of just these words from Psalm 19 . . .
The precepts of the Lord are right, rejoicing the heart;
The commandment of the Lord is clear, enlightening the eye.
Psalm 19 – The 16th Sunday after Pentecost – for Sunday, September 13, 2015
“Let the words of my mouth and the meditations of my heart be pleasing to you, Lord, my rock and my redeemer.” (Psalm 19:14)
I try not to hurry to the end of Psalm 19, but can’t resist because it’s my beginning.
Yes, many of the words before 19’s final verse are memorable. Indeed, the Psalms in their entirety are an extraordinary collection. These vibrant verses, scribed thousands of years ago by persons in places with daily experiences alien to my twenty-first century world, challenge me. The Psalms are fingers wagging in my face, arms enveloping my shoulders, hands pressed together in prayer, and fists threatening my complacency. What of just these words from Psalm 19:7 . . .
The Lord’s instruction is perfect, reviving one’s very being.
The Lord’s laws are faithful, making naive people wise.