Our Psalm reading today opens with the exhortation: ‘Do not fret because of those who are evil, or be envious of those who do wrong.’ The Psalmist directs us to several ways of dealing with our concerns about evil: 1) Trust in the Lord 2) Do good 3) Enjoy His protection and provision 4) Take delight in Him 5) Commit to Him 6) Be still 7) Wait patiently for Him. It’s interesting to note that not one of these courses of action involves trying to change, persuade, judge, punish, shame, or expose those who are perpetrating injustice and evil deeds. It’s about behaving and living in ways that will bring about change and an increased righteousness in ourselves.
We are also given direction to avoid fretting, envy, anger and wrath, which remove our joy, hinder spiritual growth and will not change anyone for the better. These emotions sap our strength and take our focus off God. We are strongly reminded that it is God who will judge and destroy the wicked. He is in total control.
The Psalm ends with the encouraging confirmation that the Lord is our Salvation and stronghold, help, deliverer and refuge. We do not need to fret or fear.
Father, please continue the transforming work that You have started in each one of us. Amen.