A PSALM FOR TROUBLED TIMES

Psalm 37
The Lot of the Good and the Wicked

Do not fret because of the wicked;
do not envy those who do evil:
for they wither quickly like grass
and fade like the green of the fields.
If you trust in the Lord and do good,
then you will live in the land and be secure.
If you find your delight in the Lord,
he will grant your heart’s desire.
Commit your life to the Lord,
trust in him and he will act,
so that your justice breaks forth like the light,
your cause like the noon-day sun.
Be still before the Lord and wait in patience;
do not fret at the man who prospers;
a man who makes evil plots
to bring down the needy and the poor.
Calm your anger and forget your rage:
do not fret, it only leads to evil.
For those who do evil shall perish;
the patient shall inherit the land.
A little longer, and the wicked shall have gone.
Look at this place, he is not there.
But the humble will own the land
and enjoy the fullness of peace.

The wicked man plots against the just
and gnashes his teeth against him;
but the Lord laughs at the wicked
for he sees that his day is at hand.
The sword of the wicked is drawn,
his bow is bent to slaughter the upright.
Their sword will pierce their own hearts
and their bows will be broken to pieces.
The just man’s few possessions
are better than the wicked man’s wealth;
for the power of the wicked will be broken
and the Lord will support the just.
He protects the lives of the upright,
their heritage will last for ever.
They will not be put to shame in evil days,
in time of famine their food will not fail.
But all the wicked will perish
and all the enemies of the Lord.
They are like the beauty of the meadows,
they will vanish, they will vanish like smoke.
The wicked man borrows without repaying,
but the just man is generous and gives.
Those blessed by the Lord will own the land,
but those he has cursed will be destroyed.
The Lord guides the steps of a man
and makes safe the path of one he loves.
Though he stumble, he will never fall
for the Lord holds him by the hand.
I was young and now I am old,
but I have never seen the just man forsaken
nor his children begging for bread.
All the day, he is generous and lends
and his children become a blessing.
Then turn away from evil and do good
and you will have a home for ever;
for the Lord loves justice
and will never forsake his friends.
The unjust will be wiped out for ever
and the children of the wicked destroyed.
The just will inherit the land;
there they shall live for ever.

The just man’s mouth utters wisdom
and his lips speak what is right;
the law of his God is in his heart,
his steps will be saved from stumbling.
The wicked man watches for the just
and seeks occasion to kill him.
The Lord will not leave him in his power
nor let him be condemned when he is judged.
Then wait for the Lord, keep to his way.
It is he who will free you from the wicked,
raise you up to possess the land
and see the wicked destroyed.
I have seen the wicked triumphant,
towering like a cedar of Lebanon.
I passed by again; he was gone.
I searched; he was nowhere to be found.
See the just man, make the upright,
for the peaceful man, a future likes in store,
but sinners will all be destroyed.
No future lies in store for the wicked.
The salvation of the just comes from the Lord,
their stronghold in time of distress.
The Lord helps them and delivers them
and saves them: for their refuge is in him.

Glory to the Father, to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit;
as it was in the beginning, is now, and will be for ever. Amen!

A Prayer for America

Almighty God and Father,
we seek to better understand the issues and concerns
that confront our beloved country,
and how the Gospel compels us
to respond as faithful citizens in our community.
We ask for eyes that are free from blindness,
so that we might see each other as brothers and sisters,
one and equal in dignity,
especially those who are victims
of abuse and violence, deceit and poverty.
We ask for ears that will hear the cries
of children unborn and those abandoned,
and of men and women oppressed
because of race or creed, religion or gender.
We ask for minds and hearts that are open
to hearing the voices of leaders
who will bring us closer to your kingdom.
We pray for leaders who hear your Word,
live in your love, and keep in the ways of your truth
as they strive to follow in the steps of Jesus and his apostles,
and guide us to your kingdom of justice and peace.
We ask this in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son,
who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God for ever and ever. Amen!

Saint Francis of Assisi, pray for us!
Saint Clare of Assisi, pray for us!
Our Lady of Angels, pray for us!
Our Lady of the Immaculate Conception, pray for us!

Learn More: Forming Consciences for Faithful Citizenship

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About Us

Founded in 2007, the Assisi Project is an international fellowship of ‘Franciscans in Spirit’ with friends and followers in the United States, Canada, Europe, and Africa. We are dedicated to helping Christian believers of all ages to more faithfully live the Gospel of Christ in the spirit of Saints Francis and Clare of Assisi. In 2017, in celebration of our 10th anniversary, we will lead our annual fall pilgrimage to Assisi; meet monthly for Mass, faith formation, and faith sharing; and offer adults several opportunities to experience a Franciscan-style “hermitage retreat.” For more information about the Assisi Project and upcoming opportunities for faith formation, prayer, and pilgrimage in the Franciscan spiritual tradition, please contact Cliff Garvey at c.garvey@ymail.com. May the Lord give you peace!

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