Lent 2013 – day 1

13 Feb

For this year’s lent I have been challenged to take up silent meditation on the Bible. In particular, it is to be a silent meditation on Psalm 139.
Having never really done anything for lent before (I always joke about giving up cigarettes and alcohol, but that’s not hard for a non-smoking tee-totaller!) the idea was quite daunting. However I have resolved to try and do this every day, up to Easter Sunday, and see where it takes me after that.

The Psalm itself is in effect divided into 8 paragraphs (1-4, 5-6, 7-10, 11-12, 13-16, 17-18, 19-22 and 23-24). So I will be reading one of the first 7 each day and concluding each day with the 8th, which is a prayer asking for God to help me find my flaws and remove them from my life, as I seek to become more like Him.

Today is verses 1-4
Psalm 139:1-4
O Lord, you have searched me and you know me. You know when I sit and when I rise; you perceive my thoughts from afar. You discern my going out and my lying down; you are familiar with all my ways. Before a word is on my tongue you know it completely, O Lord.

The first thing that happened when I read this was nothing to do with the words but the sounds around me. I am almost certainly dyspraxic (almost certainly, simply because by the time I was assessed I was too old for the tests they use and so they could not say for sure), which includes being hypersensitive. As such, when I am “silent” I tend to notice every little noise going on around me. I can hear the faint tweets if birds in the garden. I hear the whirring of my computer fan, the fridge humming in the kitchen, the sounds that my body makes as it moves, my belly rumbling, my breathing, the local traffic that is actually some distance away, the children in the local schools. I feel the materials if the clothes touching my body, the throb of my toe, the strapping around my toe as I unconsciously wiggle them. I see everything that changes in my peripheral vision, such as flickering lights on a computer, the passing of a shadow as a bird flies past my window, the movement of a spider that is in the corner of my bedroom ceiling. And all of this I am noticing constantly as I read.

But as I read these verses I am struck by the fact that God knows all of this. He is familiar with everything that I experience! It does make me wonder why He made me this way, given how distracting that this is for me, but it is still an amazing thing to think that every little thing that distracts me is seen by God.

Not the most enlightening first day of lent perhaps, but it’s a start.

Search me, O God, and know my heart; test me and know my anxious thoughts. See if there is any offensive way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting.


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Archbishop Cranmer

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