Sunday, March 04, 2012

Comfort in the Sung Word

Suddenly I awoke from a frightful dream.  Opening my eyes, I could still see the dark room, but my mind kept retreating to that scary man who was outside watching my house, plotting with with two others to get inside to injure my family.  I could not not think of anything but that dream and I was afraid.

But then, I remembered to sing Psalm 141 from Evening Prayer:

"O Lord, I call to you come to me quickly; hear my voice when I cry to You.
Let my prayer rise before You as incense, the lifting up of my hands as the evening sacrifice.
Set a watch before my mouth, O Lord, and guard the door of my lips.
Let not my heart incline to any evil thing; let me not be occupied in wickedness with evil-doers.
But my eyes are turned to You, O God; in You I take refuge.  Strip me not of my life."

And I repeated these lines and that scary man and scary dream were fading from memory.  But I was still awake, still a little shaky from fright, and into my mind popped a hymn to sing:

I walk in danger all the way,
The thought shall never leave me
That Satan, who has marked his prey,
Is plotting to deceive me.
This foe with hidden snares
May seize me unawares
If I should fail to watch and pray.
I walk in danger all the way.

I walk with Jesus all the way,
His guidance never fails me;
Within His wounds I find a stay
When Satan's pow'r assails me;
And by His footsteps led,
My path I safely tread.
No evil leads my soul astray;
I walk with Jesus all the way.

I'm not sure how long it was I laid in bed singing the Psalmody and hymn, but I am thankful I was led to sing them in my fearfulness.  The Lord is good and guides His sheep to green pastures and leads me beside still waters.

"Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for you are with me, your rod and your staff, they comfort me."


Susan said...

One of the [gazillion] scenes I love in the "Passion" movie is when Mary Magdalene and Mary-the-mom wake up in the middle of the night. There was a sound, and they were startled awake. And what do we see faithful women do when they awaken, fearful, in the night? They start praying the liturgy.

I just love that!

Glenda said...

Susan, I haven't seen that movie since I saw it in the theater. Every year I think that we should watch it again and every year I forget. I'm really going to have to watch it again. I liked it the first time and have no recollection of the scene you describe. Maybe I'll just put it on my calendar so I don't forget this year too.

Kim said...

Two things, if you don't have The Passion, you may borrow ours.
Also, thank you for writing what you did about your bad dream. I personally found your words comforting. I am plagued by a recurring thought, most often early AM or when I'm a long way from home and now I have something to occupy my mind with!

T. said...

I love that evening prayer canticle. I always was comforted by that, singing it in college or at sem.

I remember one or two vivid nightmares in college and being so frightened all I could think of was "Jesus Loves Me".... Awfully simple, but the dreams were so terrifying, it was the quickest one I could think of in my fright. But sure enough, slowly His promise worked to strengthen me.

I pray God will help us all keep a memory of many of the blessed hymns!