For Jeduthun, the choir director: A psalm of David.
1I said to myself, “I will watch what I do
and not sin in what I say.
I will hold my tongue
when the ungodly are around me.”
2But as I stood there in silence—
not even speaking of good things—
the turmoil within me grew worse.
3The more I thought about it,
the hotter I got,
igniting a fire of words:
4“Lord, remind me how brief my time on earth will be.
Remind me that my days are numbered—
how fleeting my life is.
5You have made my life no longer than the width of my hand.
My entire lifetime is just a moment to you;
at best, each of us is but a breath.”
6We are merely moving shadows,
and all our busy rushing ends in nothing.
We heap up wealth,
not knowing who will spend it.
7And so, Lord, where do I put my hope?
My only hope is in you.
8Rescue me from my rebellion.
Do not let fools mock me.
9I am silent before you; I won’t say a word,
for my punishment is from you.
10But please stop striking me!
I am exhausted by the blows from your hand.
11When you discipline us for our sins,
you consume like a moth what is precious to us.
Each of us is but a breath.
12Hear my prayer, O Lord!
Listen to my cries for help!
Don’t ignore my tears.
For I am your guest—
a traveler passing through,
as my ancestors were before me.
13Leave me alone so I can smile again
before I am gone and exist no more.