No one’s life is perfect; we are all broken and fallen. In the grand scheme of things, all of our problems are due to our fallen nature; original sin. However, in the minute details of our lives, it is the mistakes we make both large and small that fill us with dread, embarrassment, anger and, sadly, even shame. It is those things we forget: the lost keys, the embarrassing words we say, actions we take. We are so hard on ourselves when we are only human, after all.
But God never feels this way about us. God is never ashamed of us, we never embarrass Him, as we are made in His image and likeness; we are good, very good in His eyes. Of course our sins cause Him sorrow but that quickly turns to joy at our own sorrow and repentance. So much joy, in fact, that He forgets these same sins the moment we say we are sorry. We, however, are rarely that kind to ourselves.
Our days and our nights can be filled with self-recrimination. We are so good at remembering our mistakes and not so good at remembering what we do right. Here’s where the Psalms come in; they are full of words of comfort and affirmation reminding us that God loves us – even when we have accidents, make mistakes and, yes, even when we sin.
Finding a psalm to give us comfort and reassurance is essential in these moments when we feel we are stupid or are embarrassed and angry with ourselves for what we did or what we didn’t do.
Here’s a few of my favorites psalms. You might highlight them in your Bible, keep them posted on your bathroom mirror or tucked in your prayer book for Mass. Regardless of where you keep them, keep them handy because you are guaranteed to make another mistake soon and I don’t want you listening to the whispers of the snake any longer. I want you to hear the words of God reminding you of His love, forgiveness and comfort:
Psalm 55 – when you are so embarrassed that you want to run away or have been betrayed by friends: “I say, “If only I had wings like a dove that I might fly away and find rest.”
Psalm 62 – when you feeling a bit abandoned by the world: “God alone is my rock and my salvation, my fortress; I shall not fall. My deliverance and honor are with God, my strong rock; my refuge is with God.”
Psalm 73 – when you are feeling as if all of your efforts to be holy is for nothing, have reassurance that God is there: “Is it in vain that I have kept my heart pure, washed my hands in innocence? For I am afflicted day after day, chastised every morning.”
Psalm 103 – when you need to be reminded of God’s deep love and mercy for you (and all of your sins and mistakes): “For as the heavens tower over the earth, so his mercy towers over those who fear him. As far as the east is from the west, so far has he removed our sins from us.”
Please take a minute and share some of your favorite Psalms so others might be encouraged and feel their hearts mended by His love!