Paula D’Arcy

life as prayer

Psalm 112 begins, “Praise the Lord!  Happy are those who fear the Lord, who greatly delight in his commandments.  Their descendants will be mighty in the land; the generation of the upright will be blessed.  Wealth and riches are in their houses, and their righteousness endures forever” (vv. 1-3).
There are plenty of places in the Bible that speak of the blessings that come with being part of the family of God.  Of course, there are always those who misinterpret these promises.  As Beth Tanner notes in The Psalms for Today, the result is “the name-it-and-claim-it or prosperity gospel, which argues that God intends all believers to have wealth and riches.” (33)  It follows that if you live a just life, God rewards you.  And on the flip side, if you suffer from poverty, ill health, and other types of suffering, you need to repent and get your life turned around.  Job heard some of that advice from his friends.
But as Tanner says, “Psalm 112 tells of the righteous one and teaches us lessons on how we are to live.  It tells us that our whole lives should be lived as God’s people.”  God is not addressed in the psalm, but can we consider it to be a prayer?  “Could our lives be prayer?” she asks. (38)  If Paula D’Arcy and Richard Rohr are correct in saying that “God comes to you disguised as your life,” then the answer is certainly yes. 
Verse 6 says that “the righteous will never be moved; they will be remembered forever.”  What could that mean, considering the vast numbers of the forgotten, voiceless saints down through the ages—saints who have endured much?
(The image comes from