Date: Friday, Mar 3
Contributor: Gayle Marsh
I wait for the Lord; my soul waits for him; *
in his word is my hope.
My soul waits for the Lord, more than watchmen for the morning, *
more than watchmen for the morning.
A lot of waiting and watching happens in the wee hours. Darkness magnifies fear. Limited vision and creaky nocturnal disturbances have accompanied humanity for millennia. The sixteenth century Cornish Peasants Litany contains the phrase:
“From ghoulies and ghosties and longleggety beasties And things that go bump in the night, Good Lord deliver us!”
I ponder and join cycle of prayers offered 24/7 worldwide in faith communities and monasteries around the clock. We are not alone. Angels are present. Joining the communion of all saints past, present and yet to come brings a hopefulness and peace that dispels our fight to fall asleep or get back to sleep. There is comfort as my ever watchful canine companion, Abby, ALWAYS gets up to be with me. And, we note the faithfulness of DOG as GOD spelled backwards. Historically, watchmen are members of a body of people who stay awake to observe villages and towns overnight. In Israel’s time watchers kept track of livestock as we recall shepherds alert at Jesus birth. Few towns had walls to maintain boundaries to protect from poachers or “enemy” attack. Watchers monitor the possibility of fire, of riot, and all manner of things “that go bump in the night”.
For whom are we are called to stay alert for?
What invitation awaits as we keep watch?