Psalm 1 (NRSVUE)
1 Happy are those
who do not follow the advice of the wicked
or take the path that sinners tread
or sit in the seat of scoffers,
2 but their delight is in the law of the Lord,
and on his law they meditate day and night.
Holy One, as we look over the news from around the world,
we grieve the ongoing violence, war, and mistreatment of others.
As reports of violence and atrocities in Israel/Palestine increase,
we are keenly aware that war is still destroying life and property in Ukraine.
And we know violence still ravages our world in subtle ways that do not make the news.
Guide us as we repent of our warring ways,
help us instead to meditate on your teachings of mercy, grace, and forgiveness.
3 They are like trees
planted by streams of water,
which yield their fruit in its season,
and their leaves do not wither.
In all that they do, they prosper.
In addition to the destruction of human life and property, God of all,
we are increasingly aware of the damages we have inflicted on this fragile planet we call home.
Much of the southern hemisphere is sweltering under extreme heat as winter ends,
fueling fears of wildfires, draught, and devastation in the months to come.
Help us to live in a balanced relationship with the world around us,
caring for the plants and animals whose lives are woven together with ours
in a beautiful tapestry of diversity and relationship.
4 The wicked are not so
but are like chaff that the wind drives away.
5 Therefore the wicked will not stand in the judgment
nor sinners in the congregation of the righteous,
6 for the Lord watches over the way of the righteous,
but the way of the wicked will perish.
Loving God, sustain us as we strive to live righteous lives.
Help us to have eyes and ears that see and hear the plight of our neighbors near and far.
May we reach out with your love and presence to all who grieve:
– the families of the 10 miners killed and many more injured in a gold mine collapse in Zimbabwe,
– the family and friends of the two people dead after a suspected grizzly bear attack in Canada’s Banff National Park,
– the countless people suffering as more than 1,000 people have died from dengue in Bangladesh,
– the relatives and friends of a family murdered in a suburb of Chicago in the United States,
– and all those whose grief remains unknown to us.
We trust that you are present in their lives, as you are in ours.
Watch over us, we pray, as you watch over all of creation.