Chasm pt 2

Ordinary Time 30/Trinity 20 – Tuesday

Alice could make no sense of the despair into which she had fallen. She had always held that happiness should be defined as an absence of pain rather than the presence of pleasure. So why, with a decent job, good health and a roof over her head, did she regularly and so childishly collapse into moist sobs?

She could only complain of feeling distressingly incidental to other human beings, somehow superfluous to the planet and the movement of its inhabitants.

What perhaps lay behind the tears was the sad suspicion that had she one day tripped and slipped off the edge of the globe, no one would have given her absence more than a minute’s thought.

Alain de Botton, The Romantic Movement (1995: London, Picador)

Replace all feminine third person singular pronouns with masculine ones and replace Alice with my name in the passage above.


O Lord, you will not withhold your compassion from me.
Your merciful love and your truth will always guard me.

For I am beset with evils too many to be counted.
My sins have fallen upon me and my sight fails me.
They are more than the hairs of my head, and my heart sinks.

O Lord, come to my rescue,
Lord, come to my aid.

Psalm 39:12-14, 1963 Grail Psalter


Out of the depths I cry to you, O Lord,

Lord, hear my voice!
O let your ears be attentive to the voice of my pleading.

If you, O Lord, should mark our guilt,
Lord, who would survive?

But with you is found forgiveness:
for this we revere you.

My soul is waiting for the Lord,
I count on his word.

My soul is longing for the Lord
more than watchmen for daybreak.
(Let the watchman count on daybreak
and Israel on the Lord.)

Because with the Lord there is mercy
and fullness of redemption,
Israel indeed he will redeem
from all its iniquity.

– Psalm 129 (130), 1963 Grail Psalter

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