Psalm 3 - One A Week Psalm Project
Reflections week 3
One A Week Psalm Project
The first day of Psalm 3 I woke up early from an unsettled sleep and decided I may as well get up and get reading and was greeted with:
“I lie down and sleep. I wake again because the Lord sustains me.”
I read through the Matthew Henry commentary and was struck by what he writes;
“Many lie down and cannot sleep, through pain of body or anguish of mind or the continual alarm of fear in the night. But it seems here rather to be meant of the calmness of David’s spirit, in the midst of his dangers. The Lord, by his grace, and the consolation of his Spirit, made him easy. It is a great mercy when we are in trouble and have our minds stayed upon God.” (location 16032)
I have often experienced lying down and not sleeping –commonly due to the ‘pain of body’ and ‘anguish of mind’ Henry writes of. I greatly desire this ‘calmness of David’s spirit, in the midst of his dangers’ even if my dangers are less physical and immediate than David’s were; and to seek the Lord and to rest in the ‘consolation of his (God’s) Spirit’ and to be made easy.
Reflections on Psalm 3
I have struggled this week to connect with the beginning of this Psalm because, for the first time in a long time, I don’t feel the foes around me that much. But it is a Psalm that I think I will need to remember to come back to because I know I won’t always feel like this. Even now, in this fortunate stage, I am just ever so slightly, waiting for the other shoe to drop. And, I would also like to not be focused on revenge, which this psalm speaks about. I want God to stop the bad things, but I also need to learn to forgive those closest to me.
This period of ‘being fortunate’ is actually messing a bit with the theology of God I’ve learned to live with. So much of my past has been with grappling with how God can allow the world God has with all it’s pain & suffering, & learning to believe that it is not because God desires this pain, but rather the result of our choices, our free will & our desires. God has the ability to reach out & instantly heal – which I have experienced – but so often apparently chooses not to – which I have also experienced. Prayer is not a magic trick that provides the solution we want to any prayer we throw God’s way. And that even through all this, we can learn to love a God who doesn’t appear to work the way we would want God to and know that this is a better way than our own.
Now I need to be able to view my theology of God from a slightly different perspective & perhaps work a bit harder at learning how to incorporate joy. Maybe I need to learn again that God does in fact answer many prayers and speak into many lives - in many different ways, including using me.
I pray that God will hear not only my words in my prayers but my heart and longings within me that hopefully come from God. I pray that I will remember that God not only hears my words, but also knows my heart and longings, and knows that I hope they come from God. Amen
This is all prayers really are – a deep, deep desire and longing for God to be intertwined through every moment of our day and around every person that we meet.
The passages which stood out for me Ps3:3:
“But you are a shield around me, O Lord; you bestow glory on me and lift up my head.
This psalm is a good one for those who are surround by foes – including the foes of ill-health, the foes of incapacity, the real or perceived foes of those who terrorise us, the foes of family, the foe of lack of family, the foes of a difficult life.
What more appropriate prayer could there be but that God will be a shield around us? That God would bestow glory on us and lift up our heads?
This week I prayed for help with praying.
I asked for help with work, with ideas, with how to pray for people around me. With how to pray for the big things of the world that I felt overwhelmed with just thinking about. I asked for love and patience and deliverance.
Thoughts about the process
This week I missed one day for the first time.
I was ok with it.
As I reflect on this process, I feel that I am more naturally turning to God throughout the day at the moment. Possibly it has to do with circumstances, or possibly this is an inaccurate perception.
Thoughts about creative process
The creative process can become an exercise in patience as much as anything – or an instigator to other things. In this process I am only creating one page in the Psalm Project book and so I must be patient. I need to remember there is plenty of other artwork I can do.
I don’t really know what I am doing creatively. I like to work with physical shapes and different materials and I have no real desire to represent reality or ‘real’ things or what I ‘see’.
I work by feel and in feelings.