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Thursday, 1 June 2017

"O God... Rise up!"

"I ask for the grace to pray and meditate faithfully, I ask for patience, tolerance, empathy, compassion and gentleness.  I ask to abstain from anger, anxiety, arrogance, compulsive behaviour, cynicism, discouragement, and self-importance.  I ask to know and follow Jesus more closely, seeking justice, loving kindness, and walking humbly."

Psalm 139:19-22
19 O that you would kill the wicked, O God,
   and that the bloodthirsty would depart from me—
20 those who speak of you maliciously,
   and lift themselves up against you for evil!
21 Do I not hate those who hate you, O Lord?
   And do I not loathe those who rise up against you?
22 I hate them with perfect hatred;
   I count them my enemies.

1) "O... that the bloodthirsty would depart from me;"

2) I debated whether I would pray this passage.  It would be easier to move on to the closing verses.  But there it is.  There are indeed days when I know who the enemy is and I'm quite certain it isn't me.  These four verses themselves illustrate the very wickedness they would condemn.  I know that it is when I'm feeling my most vehemently towards someone when I'm most deeply in my own wickedness.  But whatever you do, don't point that out to me at the time.  These are the very depths of the earth where God already knows what is in our hearts and on our lips.  The psalm is at least honest in the depths of is feeling.  And then I hate myself for my own hatred... and I hate myself for hating myself, and I hate them more for making me hate myself... and that is not the cycle to which we have been called.  "Peace be with you," were the first words Jesus spoke to his disciples when he appeared to them.  I await with excited anticipation the final verses of the psalm.  I think I might find peace there.

3) What is the invitation in all this?  To move on to the final verses for the psalm after sitting with the depth of my shadow self.

"Holy One, be with us in darkness, the darkness is as light to you.  In the darkness, reveal to us what you would have us see that we cannot see in the light."

Breathprayer: "O God... rise up."

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