A prayer for forgiveness
1 I told myself, “I'll be careful not to sin by what I say, and I'll muzzle my mouth when evil people are near.”
2 I kept completely silent, but it did no good, but … good: One possible meaning for the difficult Hebrew text. and I suffered even more.
3 I felt a fire burning inside, and the more I thought, the more it burnt, until at last I said:
4 “Please, LORD, show me my future. Will I soon be gone?
5 You made my life short, so brief that the time means nothing to you.
“Human life is but a breath, 6 and it disappears like a shadow.
Our struggles are senseless; we store up more and more, without ever knowing who will get it all.
7 “What am I waiting for? I depend on you, Lord!
8 Save me from my sins. Don't let fools sneer at me.
9 You treated me like this, and I kept silent, not saying a word.
10 “Won't you stop punishing me? You have worn me down.
11 You punish us severely because of our sins.
Like a moth, you destroy what we treasure most. We are as frail as a breath.
12 “Listen, LORD, to my prayer! My eyes are flooded with tears, as I pray to you.
I am merely a stranger visiting your home as my ancestors did.
13 Stop being angry with me and let me smile again before I am dead and gone.”