Psalm 52

Why do you boast of evil, you mighty hero?
    Why do you boast all day long,
    you who are a disgrace in the eyes of God?
You who practise deceit,
    your tongue plots destruction;
    it is like a sharpened razor.
You love evil rather than good,
    falsehood rather than speaking the truth.
You love every harmful word,
    you deceitful tongue!
Surely God will bring you down to everlasting ruin:
    he will snatch you up and pluck you from your tent;
    he will uproot you from the land of the living.
The righteous will see and fear;
    they will laugh at you, saying,
‘Here now is the man
    who did not make God his stronghold
but trusted in his great wealth
    and grew strong by destroying others!’
But I am like an olive tree
    flourishing in the house of God;
I trust in God’s unfailing love
    for ever and ever.
For what you have done I will always praise you
    in the presence of your faithful people.
And I will hope in your name,
    for your name is good.

There was once a foolish man who built his life on the sand of what others thought of him, of his capacity to work and earn, of his dashing good looks and charming smile, of his intellect and academic prowess, of his ability to perform and inspire others to applause, of his piety and tick-box religious expression, of his position and influence with others. And when the storms came and beat against that carefully constructed dwelling, it was swept away. Nothing remained except the shell of a man. There was another man who, quite frankly, looked bonkers: he spent his days feeding on the Word, listening for God’s voice and responding in obedience, he remained in constant conversation with his Father who loved him endlessly. His dwelling place didn’t look as elaborate as that of the first but when the storms were over, it hadn’t changed a bit - in fact, if you looked carefully, you might even say it had been improved upon.

Questions for thought and discussion 

  • Which house are you living in?
  • How do we help our young people to build good dwellings?

Independent Schools West of Scotland and Perthshire

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