New every morning is your love, great God of light, and all day long you are working for good in the world. Stir up in us desire to serve you, to live peacefully with our neighbors and all your creation, and to devote each day to your Son, our Savior Jesus Christ. Amen.

"A Liturgy for Morning Prayer," Upper Room Worshipbook

Used by permission from the Book of Common Worship, © 2018 Westminster John Knox Press. All rights reserved. This prayer appears in “A Liturgy for Morning Prayer” in Upper Room Worshipbook.


Today’s Reflection

The Psalms invite us to be honest. Some Christians have difficulty with the imprecatory psalms [psalms that invoke judgment or calamity on those perceived as God’s enemies] and would prefer to leave them out of the Bible. Jesus teaches us to love our neighbors and even our enemies, so how can we possibly utter words in which we demand revenge? Rejection of such passages may indicate our unwillingness to deal with feelings of rage and vindictiveness or our prideful desire to be better than the original writers. Of course we don’t really intend to murder our enemies—or have God do it for us—but do we not identify with outraged desire for revenge? Speaking such desires to God means leaving them in the hands of our loving Creator, the only one who can be trusted to act with grace toward us and toward those we wish to destroy.

—Elizabeth J. Canham, Finding Your Voice in the Psalms: An Invitation to Honest Prayer (Upper Room Books, 2013)

Today’s Question

What psalms make you feel uncomfortable with what they ask God to do? Join the conversation.

Today’s Scripture

Depart from evil, and do good; so you shall abide forever. For the Lord loves justice; he will not forsake his faithful ones.
—Psalm 37:27-28 (NRSV)

Prayer for the Week

Show me your ways, Lord,
teach me your paths.
Guide me in your truth and teach me,
for you are God my Savior,
and my hope is in you all day long.
Psalm 25:4-5 (NIV)
Submit your prayer to The Upper Room.

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Lectionary Readings

(Courtesy of Vanderbilt Divinity Library)

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  • Jill Posted July 4, 2023 12:58 pm

    No psalms come readily to mind. What does come to mind is the end of Psalm 139…I think this is a pretty well known psalm…”Search me, O God, and know my heart…” The last few verses take an awkward turn, at least to me. After praising His creation, His omniscience…the psalmist brings up the wicked, his adversaries. There is talk of hatred, abhorrence, enemies. And then the verse…hating with a “perfect hatred” or a “righteous hatred”. This gives me pause – and makes me think about God hating sin, but not the sinner. We stand united with Him, hating all that is not aligned with His will – but extending grace and love to the committer of the sin. I don’t know where I am going with this…but this was what is in my brain.
    I reached out to my doubles partner to see if she wanted to hit this morning. We played for a while. It was warm when the sun was out. We were grateful for the cloud cover while we had it.
    Now home, watching Wimbledon and getting ready to do some school work. Have some swordfish to grill up a little later. The kittens are napping and all is quiet. Just the way we like it.
    Father God, thank You for this great nation and the independence we have. Thank You for freedom to worship You. Thank You for the sacrifices of so many who have gone before us. Thank you, Robert – for serving this nation.

  • Ally Posted July 4, 2023 2:26 pm

    Hello all, re: yesterday’s question: Psalm 92, as it is a reminder that God holds me and and protects me; Psalm 40, as it reminds that even when I feel stuck, God is pulling me up and giving me a song to sing. It gives me hope. Psalm 121 reminds me that my help comes from God, that the God who watches over me does not sleep.
    I do sometimes feel uncomfortable with passages of scripture in which God visits vengeance upon opponents of Israel. At the same time, I understand that when the palmist calls for vengeance over enemies, it’s a very human reaction that I relate to. I’ve been there.
    I’m off from work for the holiday. David and I are having a quiet day at home. Back to work tomorrow and then I’ll have my regular off days. They will be busy with appointments. Next week too. Have a safe 4th and love to you all.

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