Jenny's Psalm Reflections: Psalm 1 v.1 and 3

Since the beginning of the first lockdown here in the UK, I have been sharing weekly Psalm Reflections on Facebook. This was my way of trying to help people in this difficult situation and to draw on the words of the Psalms as a comfort and guidance.

I have now decided that I want to use this opportunity to work through every Psalm! It will be a long but hopefully fruitful journey to share with you.

Starting with the very first Psalm Reflection that I shared on Facebook.

Today’s verse is Psalm 1 V.1 & 3

‘Happy are those who do not follow the advice of the wicked…they are like trees planted by streams of water’

Background:

This first Psalm gives us two choices. Will we choose a life away from God or choose to folIow him? Choosing the latter provides us with an oasis of calm and a rich abundance of life. The happy followers will be like trees growing well and sinking their roots in nearby streams of flowing water, drawing sustenance and flourishing. It is a beautiful picture, especially at the moment, when we are feeling hot and bothered, in the middle of a mini-heatwave, and we have also come through extremely difficult times with the COVID-19 pandemic. Will we choose to dig our roots into the love of God and trust in Him through all that life throws at us, or shall we take our chances and blow waywardly like pieces of twigs thrown around in a storm?

It is certainly a decision each and everyone of us has to make as we ask questions about faith. I wonder what your choice is, will be or has been, and how you will respond as we move through the psalms together? 

What I am certain of, however, as we pray this week’s verses, is that we’re joining with all who have ever said or sung these words before us, and asked similar questions to ourselves. 

Meditation

1. Find a quiet place.

Sit comfortably but alert – feet flat on the floor, back pushed hard against the back of the chair. 

2. Focus on your breathing. 

Pay attention to in-breaths and out-breaths. You may think of breathing in God’s life and peace and breathing out any tension.

3. Be aware of your body.

Let your aches and pains be there. Rest your hands in your lap ; you don’t need to be doing anything with them now. Rest your feet on the floor; you don’t need to go anywhere. Shrug your shoulders, ease your neck. Take time to become still…

4. Say verse aloud. 

Say the verses aloud to yourself and don’t try to analyse it. Read it again slowly, listening.

5. see whether anything about THE VERSE strikes you

Sit quietly and see whether anything about it strikes you as important for you. Tell God what it is. Ask God for what you need. Make a note of anything you want to remember.

6. Finish with this prayer: 

Christ our wisdom, give us delight in your law, that we may bear fruits of patience and peace in the kingdom of the righteous; for your mercy’s sake. Amen.

Posted on July 29th 2021

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