As I reflected on the Psalm for today’s evening prayer, my heart cried for all who are confronting the evils of abortion and same-sex marriage in their countries. My thoughts wondered back to the Northern Kingdom of Israel, how the Northern Kings and people corrupted temple worship and committed abominable acts against God and one another. Selected verses from Psalm 26, which resonated within my heart follow with my thoughts italicized:
Examine me, Lord, and try me;
Lord, I feel so tired with those around me who believe your commandments and statues matter not, or that, you the eternal, have ways that are outdated.
O test my heart and my mind,
Lord, I feel tested on all sides; I pray for strength to preserve to the end; I pray for the wisdom and knowledge to bring your truth and love to those who have drifted away or who know you not.
for your love is before my eyes
Lord, I see your love for your Church and faithful servants, the many saints you have provided us in this age; I pray for your continued protection and merciful love.
and I walk according to your truth.
Lord, I try to walk according to your truth; teach me your ways; teach me to be meek and humble of heart; help me to empty myself, immerse me in your truth and love.
I never take my place with liars
Lord, I am a lowly sinner; help me to avoid the company of sinners; to avoid the temptation to be my own God and establish my own commandments and statues and define what is evil and good, not according to your commandments and statues, but according to what I have established according to my own standards.
and with hypocrites I shall not go
Lord, help me to see the Pharisee in me; help me to follow your commandments and statues according to your way and not the way that best suits my politics, feelings, desires, or benefit; help me to discern your way properly through prayer and an understanding of the teachings of those who you have vested your authority in, the Pope and magisterium of the Church.
I hate the evil-doer’s company:
Lord, the flesh pots of Egypt are sweet, easy, and comforting; help me to avoid the easy, wide path that leads to the slavery of hell; yoke me to the cross of your son, which brings freedom, joy and eternal life.
Do not sweep me away with sinners,
Lord, I am a member of a nation that sacrifices the blood of innocent and helpless on the alar of greed and selfishness, make us not Sodom and Gomorrah but Nineveh.
nor my life with bloodthirsty men
Lord, help me not be counted among the sinners by inaction; inflame we with love and truth, arise the Jonah within me.
in whose hands are evil plots,
Lord, protect us from the evil plots that abound and threaten our freedom to live our life in worship of you; the evildoers want to limit our worship of you to our private acts, they do not understand that we live every minute of our lives in worship of you; as we live, so shall we die, in worship of you.
whose right hands are filled with gold.
Lord, the wealth of gold is limited to this world; your glory reins forever.