The more we read these Psalms, the more interested I have become in looking at the author's notion of shame. Often (31:1) the Psalmist will say, "Let me never be put to shame." Or in 32:1, he talks about someone being happy who is forgiven (their shame is gone.)
Shame is still a motivating factor in the Middle East. Women are put to death when they shame their family. Sons are thrown out of the family for bringing shame. It is a constant fear.
But I'm not so sure its as big of a deal in our society anymore. We watched TV shows where people put themselves to shame on purpose. Everyone has their price, and shame seems to be fairly cheap in our society. So, we might be put to shame for the moment, but its fleeting. Not something to get worked up about. Not something deep or lasting.
So, can we relate? How do we relate to concepts in the Psalms that don't translate to our lives today? How do we deal with the analogies that seem foreign? If all scripture is God breathed and matters to our faith life--how do we take concepts that are tough to understand?