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Psalm 32:10-11, The Joy of Forgiveness

Saturday, January 6

Righteous Living

Narrative Lectionary Daily Devotions written by Kace Leetch from Clergy Stuff.

My kids are becoming young adults. It's hard to watch. I know the pitfalls they must avoid and it's painful to watch them learn to navigate life the hard way. But sometimes the hard way is the only way to learn.

One of the things I try to teach them is to be honest and authentic. To do the right thing. It's hard to do the right thing. When they start learning the dysfunction of a workplace, they want to "stick it to the man," so to speak. When the start learning that doctors don't know everything, they want to quit seeing the doctor (which is not a good idea for kids who are diabetic and have MS). When they start having grown-up fights with their grown-up(ish) friends, they want to retaliate. But my life experience has taught me that, while those feel good in the moment, that elation doesn't last. Once the high wears off, the remorse and regret kicks in, and it's miserable. Even though doing the right thing is sometimes harder in the moment, in the long run, the consequences make it worth the effort.

Today's psalm isn't a warning that God will strike down whoever isn't righteous. It's a plea. Much like my desire to spare my kids from the torment of their actions, God wants to spare us from the consequences of unrighteous living. It's out of love God invites us to righteous living. God knows how amazing it feels to do the right thing. And we do, too, if we really think about it. I've wasted a lot of my life trying to spin my behavior to get away with things. When I get it right, I live with peace and happiness.

Narrative Lectionary Text: Psalm 32:10-11

Many are the torments of the wicked, but steadfast love surrounds those who trust in the Lord.

Be glad in the Lord and rejoice, O righteous, and shout for joy, all you upright in heart.

Earlier Event: January 5
Psalm 32:8-9, The Joy of Forgiveness
Later Event: January 7
John 1:35-51, Jesus Says Come and See