Friday, August 27, 2010

Quick Look at Psalm 131

Ps 131   My heart is not proud, O LORD, my eyes are not haughty; I do not concern myself with great matters or things too wonderful for me. But I have stilled and quieted my soul; like a weaned child with its mother, like a weaned child is my soul within me. O Israel, put your hope in the LORD both now and forevermore.

Man, I love this psalm. It’s a huge confession, this gateway to humility, this doorway to peace in the midst of turbulence. When I can’t figure something out, this is where I go. When I’m so confused, or overwhelmed, or disgusted by life’s circumstances or the mystery of other people, when I need to just shrug my shoulders and get on with things, this is what I do.

First, a little self-examination. Is my heart proud? Do I think I’m self-sufficient? Is this circumstance within my comfort zone and therefore a potential area of pride? I have to remind myself at times that I don’t want to have a proud heart; I don’t want to go down that pathway, because it can easily lead me into haughtiness.

Haughtiness is being a jerk, thinking I’m better than others. It’s dehumanizing to those around me, too. If I don’t want to be proud, it’s because I sure don’t want to be haughty.

Then comes the letting go, the turning away. This is like getting rid of that bad to-do list that you had no hope of finishing, or giving up the idea of fixing that thing that was way too broke for you to fix anyway. This is great stuff, and the more reluctant you’ve been to give this whatever up, the greater the relief when you do reach this state of grace, this opening of your hand. You can’t fake this; it’s an act of balance, coming right out of the inside of the experience. You’re either stepping free of something that had you bound, or it doesn’t really happen.

No comments: