Do not fret because of the wicked;
do not envy those who do evil:
for they wither quickly like grass
and fade like the green of the fields.
from the Liturgy of the Hours
The other day I was so discouraged by reading ugly comments on some beautiful blog entries about faith, life, and the Church. I can’t believe the hurtful things some people will say, seemingly to upset others. My pet peeve is people who say “I don’t mean to offend/insult/belittle you/your beliefs, but…” and then spout off cynical arguments. Many of their arguments are against straw-men to begin with, and then they carry them to extreme lengths. They will not be disabused of their misconceptions by believers, well-meaning or not.
I read this psalm this morning, and I was encouraged. Not because evildoers will fade. I believe that sometimes when the psalms say that evildoers will fade, the fading can be a turning away from evil, rather than death and punishment. I was encouraged because God, through the psalms, was reminding me not to be discouraged by the evil done by others. My job is to teach and encourage them, yes, but I can’t control others. I can control myself.
The psalm goes on to say
If you trust in the Lord and do good,
then you will live in the land and be secure.
If you find your delight in the Lord,
he will grant your heart’s desire.
Words to live by…