Psalm 15 (NRSV)
Verse 1O Lord, who may abide in your tent? Who may dwell on your holy hill?
Verse 2Those who walk blamelessly, and do what is right, and speak the truth from their heart;
Verse 3who do not slander with their tongue, and do no evil to their friends, nor take up a reproach against their neighbors;
Verse 4in whose eyes the wicked are despised, but who honor those who fear the Lord; who stand by their oath even to their hurt;
Verse 5who do not lend money at interest, and do not take a bribe against the innocent. Those who do these things shall never be moved.
It is truly a mark of wisdom and blessing—at least as old as the experience of the psalmist. We all know it when we see it; we welcome and celebrate it when we experience it—persons whose words and actions are consistent and in harmony—as the psalmist puts it, who honor their oath even when to do so might bring them hurt. But the psalmist dares to go a step further and to imagine that in such experiences we are actually glimpsing a point where heaven and earth come close together. Our Lord taught us to pray “Your kingdom come on earth as in heaven.” The psalmist already glimpsed this truth and the answer to this prayer. Persons of integrity, who stand firm and do right, are a sign of a God who indeed dwells near and through them blesses us and our world with these marks of life and wholeness.
O God of blessing, we give thanks for those persons among us whose words and actions ring true and who so become a sign of your presence and ongoing care for your creation. Amen.