Refrain:    Lord, let me know my end and the number of my days.

1    I said, ‘I will keep watch over my ways,  

so that I offend not with my tongue.

2    ‘I will guard my mouth with a muzzle,  

while the wicked are in my sight.’

3    So I held my tongue and said nothing;  

I kept silent but to no avail. [R]

4    My distress increased, my heart grew hot within me;  

while I mused, the fire was kindled

and I spoke out with my tongue:

5    ‘Lord, let me know my end and the number of my days,  

that I may know how short my time is.

6    ‘You have made my days but a handsbreadth,

and my lifetime is as nothing in your sight;  

truly, even those who stand upright are but a breath.

7    ‘We walk about like a shadow

and in vain we are in turmoil;  

we heap up riches and cannot tell who will gather them. [R]

8    ‘And now, what is my hope?  

Truly my hope is even in you.

9    ‘Deliver me from all my transgressions  

and do not make me the taunt of the fool.’

10  I fell silent and did not open my mouth,  

for surely it was your doing.

11  Take away your plague from me;  

I am consumed by the blows of your hand.

12  With rebukes for sin you punish us;

like a moth you consume our beauty;  

truly, everyone is but a breath. [R]

13  Hear my prayer, O Lord, and give ear to my cry;  

hold not your peace at my tears.

14  For I am but a stranger with you,  

a wayfarer, as all my forebears were.

15  Turn your gaze from me, that I may be glad again,  

before I go my way and am no more.

Refrain:    Lord, let me know my end and the number of my days.

O Christ, Son of the living God,

help us when we are too cast down to pray,

and grant that we may trust you all our days,

for you are with us in our living and our dying,

Jesus, Lord and God.


Common Worship: Daily Prayer, material from which is included here,
is copyright © The Archbishops' Council 2005 and published by Church House Publishing.

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