Do you have the same naughty impulse I have? (That ought to keep you reading!) Whenever the Sunday psalm has omitted verses, I go right to the missing part. It's like telling a child to never, ever look in a particular cupboard. Unless it's secured better than Fort Knox, that cupboard will be open pronto. This portion of Psalm 109, in today's Daily Office readings, is a perfect example of the material we don't see on Sunday morning:
Let his children be waifs and beggars; *
let them be driven from the ruins of their homes.
10Let the creditor seize everything he has; *
let strangers plunder his gains.
11Let there be no one to show him kindness, *
and none to pity his fatherless children.
Why is this in the Bible? It's there to let us know we are not the first people to experience any of the feelings that consume us. This psalm may be hyperbolic, but we've all been grievously injured by someone and been tempted to wish them harm.
Thankfully, the rest of the Bible doesn't just leave us there stewing. Today's lesson from Ephesians gives us the perfect medicine for this and many other ills. Having received the love of God made manifest in Jesus, we are now able to "speak the truth in love" in all difficult relationships. This means calmly defending our ground and then moving on, with only heartfelt hope for all others.
May this be a day of heartfelt hope for us all.