Thursday, October 14, 2010

Going Camping

Search me, O God, and know my heart! Try me and know my thoughts!
And see if there be any grievous way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting.

Psalm 139:23-24

One college summer I decided to memorize Psalm 139. I can’t remember why this particular psalm except that I liked the idea of being known before I was born. Along with memorizing, I would journal my thoughts and pray over the sections. I never anticipated my life being radically changed.

Writer Diana Clancy talks about knowing something so well it “makes camp in you.” The same holds true with memorized verses. When a verse “makes camp in you” it settles in for the duration of one’s life. Turning ten, my parents challenged me to memorize 32 verses in the book of Proverbs. As each verse “made camp” I would say them to my mother telling her what I thought it meant. To this day, those verses are still camping.

Be careful, however, what verses you want to make camp! Anticipate that if you take on a verse about life change, life changing events will happen. If its verses about God’s forgiveness know that confession is around the corner. Expect when you set out to make camp with some verses for God to show up!

My college summer and the end of Psalm 139 coincided. As these verses made camp I kept being reminded of thoughtless words spoken to specific individuals, one whom I hadn’t talk to in over a year. I had been searched and found grievous!

Looking up the individual that kept joining my camp site, I apologized. Fortunately I was forgiven because as it turned out, God showed up and we were married a year later!

God, my heart is open to you.
Search me.
My thoughts are muddled.
Know me.
Show me what has hurt you.
Forgive me.
Lead me, God, to your glory.

1 comment:

Suzanne Kistler said...

I love those verses. I guess they've made camp with me too.

Our quilt guild had a challenge this year, to make a "self-portrait." Mine incorporates these verses, and shows a figure of me under a magnifying glass. I call it "Self-Portrait: Laid Bare"

Tomorrow is our "reveal." Seeing your verses just now reinforces how much they are a part of me. I think I'm glad I ran out of time to do the self-portrait I'd planned all year. Thank you.