, , , , ,

Every day there is in the daily lectionary a selection of readings. It usually includes a prayer from the Book of Psalms and the format is verse, response…verse response…the verse being read by a lector and the response by the gathered community. That response is the same throughout the prayer. Today, for example, the verse is a section of Psalm 103 and the response is: The Lord is kind and merciful. It goes like this:

R. The Lord is kind and merciful.

The Lord secures justice and the rights of the oppressed. He has made known his ways to Moses and his deeds to the children of Israel.

R. The Lord is kind and merciful.

Merciful and gracious is the Lord, slow to anger and abounding in kindness. He will not always chide, nor does he keep his wrath forever.

R. The Lord is kind and merciful. (et cetera)

Sometimes the refrain is so strong in meaning that it stays with me all day. Today, I am certain, will be one of those days. It is not difficult for me to believe that God is kind and merciful, but keeping that in mind throughout the day – and all days – is sometimes a challenge to my memory. If it becomes a mantra, repeated like a heartbeat, it will take its place in my heart and rest there bringing great peace. It is a simple (but not easy) practice that I would recommend to anyone. Why not try it?