Thursday, March 05, 2009

Doin' the DO March 5: In a Grace Place

The law of the LORD is perfect and revives the soul;
the testimony of the LORD is sure and gives wisdom to the innocent.
The statutes of the LORD are just and rejoice the heart;
the commandment of the LORD is clear and gives light to the eyes.

The fear of the LORD is clean and endures for ever;
the judgments of the LORD are true and righteous altogether.
More to be desired are they than gold, more than much fine gold,
sweeter far than honey, than honey in the comb.
By them also is your servant enlightened,
and in keeping them there is great reward.
ho can tell how often he offends?
cleanse me from my secret faults.
Above all, keep your servant from presumptuous sins;
let them not get dominion over me;
then shall I be whole and sound,
and innocent of a great offense.
Let the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be acceptable in your sight,
O LORD, my strength and my redeemer.
-- from Psalm 19

This is one of my favorite Psalms, because to me it paints a picture of someone who is in a grace place -- who is in the zone, so to speak, of a living, honest relationship with God.

I know we Lutherans, because of our obsession with the tension between Law and Gospel, tend to get the heebie-jeebies whenever we read anything positive about the former. But the Psalmist here gets it right: when by grace we're in a right relationship with God and our neighbor -- which is what "the law of the Lord" is really all about -- it's a good thing. At the same time, the Psalmist is honest about his limitations -- not only his unintentional failings, but also and especially his "presumptuous sins." (Ouch.)

If I had to pick one Psalm to adjust my attitude for the beginning of each day, I think this might be it.

No comments: