I wanted to call it STRATEGY 119 or just 119. By the time I was prepared to write this book, PSALM 119 had made some substantial alterations in my thought life, wreaking havoc with deep memory, essentially providing a medicine I wasn't even aware I needed. It's all in the book. I couldn't think of a better title. It was stark. It was direct. It had no fluff. There was immediate discussion about the confusion such a title might cause in bookstores. I didn't agree, but we went with a title the publisher chose. (I still refer to it as 119. Shhh!)
The narrative tells about an old assault I suffered from a teacher many years ago. As a thirteen-year-old, I was resilient enough to move forward, without telling a soul. But some wounds have a life of their own. They grow (or fester) until no less than a reckoning will do. It all flushed to the surface, brutal and unannounced. In a flash of desperation and epiphany I turned to 119 and a 22-day plan it inspired in the moment. It's all in the book. I would say "enjoy" 119, but I am not sure "enjoy" is the right word. Be bold. It is a journey. Don't enter with any expectation. You give up control.
But there was one thing I never suspected. I did not realize at the time just how invasive the Word is, how deep the penetration, how thorough the meddling and how unrelenting it can be when a territorial dispute is involved.
—Chapter 1: TURNING INWARD
What is more, I regained myself. . . Driven by hope and an intolerable sweetness, I advanced upon the Word with the kind of violence Scripture seems to condone and encourage. All the good medicines were loosed and activated in my behalf. My first love was my first love again. The change was, and is, irrevocable. I somehow knew that. There was no bridge to cross back over, no horror to relive, no private screening of some past violation.
—Chapter 3: SPIT, NOISE, AND VENOM
Because PSALM 119 is Scripture about Scripture, the Word about the Word, because of its central location, its prime real estate in the middle of the Bible, it serves as a passage into all Scripture, from cover to cover. As a gate of entry, it teaches us how to proceed, how to revere and treasure the Word, how to fashion our own thoughts before the text.
—Chapter 4: WITH ITS DEEP INWARD GAZE
DISCOVERING YOUR SPIRITUAL CENTER: THE POWER OF PSALM 119
(Leafwood Publishers, 2011) Also available on Amazon Kindle.