Devotion for Friday after Lent 3

Those who hate me without a cause are more than the hairs of my head;
Those who would destroy me are powerful, being wrongfully my enemies;
What I did not steal, I then have to restore.
O God, it is You who knows my folly,
And my wrongs are not hidden from You.
May those who wait for You not be ashamed through me, O Lord God of hosts;
May those who seek You not be dishonored through me, O God of Israel,
Because for Your sake I have borne reproach;
Dishonor has covered my face.
I have become estranged from my brothers
And an alien to my mother’s sons.
For zeal for Your house has consumed me,
And the reproaches of those who reproach You have fallen on me.
When I wept in my soul with fasting,
It became my reproach.
When I made sackcloth my clothing,
I became a byword to them.
Those who sit in the gate talk about me,
And I am the song of the drunkards.
~ Psalm 69:4-12

It’s one thing to be hated for cause by someone you’ve wronged. But we feel it is terribly unjust to be reproached without cause. The Psalmist, however, is concerned that he will bring dishonor or shame to God. He is surrounded by powerful enemies, but he is still zealous for the Lord.

Lord, let me be like the Psalmist who was consumed with zeal for You even at the expense of his own reputation and comfort. Let me put You first in everything I do and gladly suffer reproach and insult for Your honor and glory. In the name of Jesus Christ. Amen.

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