Psalm 25:1-10 (NRSV)
Verse 1To you, O Lord, I lift up my soul.
Verse 2O my God, in you I trust; do not let me be put to shame; do not let my enemies exult over me.
Verse 3Do not let those who wait for you be put to shame; let them be ashamed who are wantonly treacherous.
Verse 4Make me to know your ways, O Lord; teach me your paths.
Verse 5Lead me in your truth, and teach me, for you are the God of my salvation; for you I wait all day long.
Verse 6Be mindful of your mercy, O Lord, and of your steadfast love, for they have been from of old.
Verse 7Do not remember the sins of my youth or my transgressions; according to your steadfast love remember me, for your goodness' sake, O Lord!
Verse 8Good and upright is the Lord; therefore he instructs sinners in the way.
Verse 9He leads the humble in what is right, and teaches the humble his way.
Verse 10All the paths of the Lord are steadfast love and faithfulness, for those who keep his covenant and his decrees.
The turning of the calendar year is often marked by reflection on what has been and resolve for a new future. As the church year turns from last days to the anticipated coming of God among God’s people the psalmist reminds us that nothing—past, present, or future—is beyond our soul’s lifting up. We put our trust in the gracious and merciful God of our salvation, a God of compassion, steadfast love, and faithfulness. We entrust to God our acknowledgment of past transgressions and personal sins, our desire for the honor due the righteous rather than the shame due the treacherous. We can be honest about our failings. We can resolve, in this new year, to seek God’s guidance through whatever is to come, to be shown God’s ways, taught God’s path of justice, and to learn how to live in relationship with God and with one another.
God of our salvation, hear the cries of our souls and guide us into this new year with your grace and mercy. Amen.