Yes, I know, this half-verse was left out of today’s reading. And I can see why. It sticks out like a deformed pinky in what is a powerful psalm of praise to our creator God. It pops out and kills the mood.
But I left it in because it reminds me that human fingerprints are all over the Bible. Also, human fingerprints are all over what we do as people of God. When we confuse our own political agenda for the reign of God, when we justify grudges rather than forgive, when we condemn another’s behaviour and ignore our own shortcomings, our fingerprints show up on our faith.
Just as our fingerprints are not easily removed, neither can the mark that Jesus gave us at baptism be washed off. We may desire the death of sinners, but God doesn’t. We may judge others, but God sees us all as equal. We may hold grudges, but God freely dispenses forgiveness.
It’s the baptismal mark of the three-in-one God who guides, nurtures and gives life, not our own decisions, because we smudge our fingerprints where they don’t belong.
That’s why we can proclaim, “O LORD, how manifold are your works!”
Faithful God, we thank you that your baptismal mark guides us in our living. Amen. — KP