Psalm 49

Ah, how many are my parts; “I contain multitudes”
The good, the bad, the beautiful, the ugly
The serene, the conflicted, the faithful, the doubt-filled
I want to choose wisdom and understanding
I want to depend on God’s wisdom, to sing my doubts away
So much competes for my attention, so many promises
Promises of happiness, wealth, health, success, nirvana even
I can get myself twisted in knots, trying to discern truth
Until, like jesting Pilate, I wash my hands of it all
Because nothing is worthwhile, nothing truly holds the secret
No practice, no philosophy, no promise, no purpose
Nothing redeems my life, nothing guarantees eternal life
My wisdom will count for nothing, my foolishness will be forgotten
My wealth will not buy life, my poverty will not guarantee goodness
Yoga will not give me youth; prayers will not earn me years
In the end, like all animals, I will die
Death is my shepherd
Wait – wait – Death WAS my shepherd but no longer has to be
“I am the shepherd,” said Jesus
My Christ, my God-Anointed, God-Appointed One
“I am the way, the truth, the life”
Can there be any other answer? Can wealth suffice? Happiness? Wisdom?
Do they last beyond death?
Ah, no, the psalmist reminds us
Humans like animals must die
Nothing accumulated on earth is permanent, all will pass away.
If we are to be more than animals, if we are to survive death
We must look beyond earth. Amen

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