Editor’s Note: Contributor Christine Moughamian is blogging each day of Lent about her progress becoming “one brave Christian.” Follow her experiment on Twitter @1bravechristian.
You’d think my first couple of days as one brave Christian would have unfolded in divine harmony: set intention, pray and meditate, write post and cruise control.
Day One was mostly spent trying to remain gracious on two hours of sleep.
Day Two slipped away from me between errands and appointments.
Day Three: all of the above?
It’s taken me years of assiduous discipline to practice yoga first thing in the morning; then sit and meditate for a few minutes. After two failed attempts at observing Sam Teague’s meditation time between 5:30 a.m. and 6 a.m., I have to admit the obvious. Today, that last discipline will have to come, well, last.
Upon awakening this morning, I listened to my motivational tape, then practiced one hour of Kundalini Yoga, meditated for a few minutes, had breakfast, showered, checked my e-mails and oh yes, lovingly interacted with my boyfriend who’d already counted nine bird species in our front and back yards.
Which explains why it was 11:26 a.m. when I finally got to meditate as one brave Christian. I pick up my Bible to find an appropriate scripture. But I don’t even need to open it. As soon as I hold my Bible in my hands, I hear quite clearly:
“Be still and know that I am” from Psalm 46.
I light the candle on my altar, sit cross-legged on the floor and affirm out loud Unity’s Prayer for Protection:
The light of God surrounds us,
The love of God enfolds us,
The power of God protects us,
The presence of God watches over us.
Wherever we are, God is
And all is well.
Then I read Psalm 46. The old English of the King James Version gives it a quality both raw and immediate. I’m particularly taken with Psalm 46:3-4:
“Though the waters thereof roar and be troubled,
Though the mountains shake with the swelling thereof. Selah.
There is a river, the streams whereof
Shall make glad the city of God,
The holy place of the tabernacles of the most High.”
On my spiritual path, I encountered Bible study after I’d already read
the Bhagavad Gita and the Yoga Sutras and been educated about the Chakra system. I cannot help but hear those two biblical verses in a metaphysical context, which I would translate as follows:
“Though the waters of my emotions may be troubled,
Though the mountain foundation of my existence may shake,
There is a current of Divine Energy
Which shall brighten the Crown Chakra with Divine Bliss.”
In the same way, verse 10, “Be still and know that I am God” means to me:
“Meditate and know that I am God in you, as you.”
When I am done reading and studying Psalm 46, I prepare for meditation. I focus my gaze on the candle flame and repeat internally “Be still and know that I am.”
Immediately, I feel a sense of peace settle down in me. My breathing slows down, thinking disappears. When I check the time, nine minutes have elapsed. I turn my gaze back to the candle and meditate some more.
After my practice, it’s time to write.
I can tell I will benefit from daily prayer, scripture study and meditation, both as a person and a writer.
Later this afternoon, I’ll interview Stowe Dailey Shockey, whose book “Flying High” introduced me to Sam Teague and his “Ten Brave Christians” experiment. I make a mental note to ask her how she fared with the early morning meditation requirement.
Do you engage in a regular prayer and meditation practice? And if so, what kind of schedule seems to work best for you?