Psalms  ◦   Chapter 39

1I have decided, "I will be careful how I live
and will not sin by what I say;
I will guard my speech
while around evil people who will twist my words."

2But as I stood there in silence, not saying a word —
not even anything good —
my frustration only increased.

3My heart flamed with irritation,
and as I thought about it, I grew more impatient,
so I spoke these words:

4"Reveal to me the end of my life — how it turns out —
the measure of my character;
help me to understand how little time I have.

5You have given me life for just a short time;
my lifespan is like a moment to you.
Even the oldest human life is like a vapor — it quickly passes away.

6The truth is: every human is a dead-person walking — a mere shadow fading away;
all their selfish work is for nothing.
They hoard wealth, but who will spend it when they are gone?

7So where do I put my hope, Lord?
I put my hope in you!

8Heal me from all my deviations from your design;
do not leave me to fade away in disgrace.

9I am speechless; I have nothing to say for myself,
for you have convinced me.

10You can stop holding my feet to the fire;
my denial is over and I’m ready to die to selfishness.

11You confront and discipline people for their deviations from your designs for life;
their self-sufficiency you consume like a dry grass —
every human is but a vapor.

12Hear my request, O Lord,
listen to my cry for help;
comfort me when I weep.
For I am just passing through this world, completely dependent on you,
a stranger here, just like my ancestors were.

13Remove your discipline from me, that I may rejoice once again
before I depart and am no more."