PPP: Psalm 32

(Reflection after the jump!)

Of David. A maskil.


Blessed is the one whose fault is removed,
    whose sin is forgiven.
Blessed is the man to whom the Lord imputes no guilt,
    in whose spirit is no deceit.


Because I kept silent, my bones wasted away;
    I groaned all day long.
For day and night your hand was heavy upon me;
    my strength withered as in dry summer heat.
Then I declared my sin to you;
    my guilt I did not hide.
I said, “I confess my transgression to the Lord,”
    and you took away the guilt of my sin.
Therefore every loyal person should pray to you
    in time of distress.
Though flood waters threaten,
    they will never reach him.
You are my shelter; you guard me from distress;
    with joyful shouts of deliverance you surround me.


I will instruct you and show you the way you should walk,
    give you counsel with my eye upon you.
Do not be like a horse or mule, without understanding;
    with bit and bridle their temper is curbed,
    else they will not come to you.


10 Many are the sorrows of the wicked one,
    but mercy surrounds the one who trusts in the Lord.
11 Be glad in the Lord and rejoice, you righteous;
    exult, all you upright of heart.

The wounds of sin are like wounds on the body. 

When untended and kept from the doctor, wounds on a body fester, causing far more problems than if they were treated promptly. Similarly, sins, when kept from God, putrefy the soul. As the Psalmist puts it, "Because I kept silent, my bones wasted away; I groaned all day long... my strength withered as in dry summer heat." 

Sins and their consequences grow in the darkness, and the longer we are content to let them stay there, the more likely we will begin to think it's normal to hold onto them. We begin to identify ourselves with those wounds in our souls.

Brothers and sisters, we are more than our sins. Though we are sinners, we are God's beloved children. So bring these sins into the light of Christ. Take them into the confessional and let the good God wash them away in his mercy. In the words of Pope Francis, "God waits and also God forgives. He is the God of mercy: he does not tire of forgiving us. It is we who are tired of asking for forgiveness..."

As we pray this psalm, may God grant us the grace of a contrite heart, that we may be willing to bear our wounds to our Lord in prayer and the Sacrament of Reconciliation, so he may heal us. And inspired by the mercy we receive, may we cry out with the Psalmist to our loving Lord, "You are my shelter; you guard me from distress; with joyful shouts of deliverance you surround me."