Lord, Who Shall Abide In Thy Tabernacle


I'm lying on a foldout chairbed in my husband's hospital room. I have blue rosary beads wrapped through my left hand. They belonged to one of my ancestors, my mother was unsure whom.

I prayed the rosary tonight as I sat alongside Bob's bed, listening to him gasp, cough, choke. I paused more than once to adjust his pillows, reach things he needed, help him. Eventually, I finished.

I love the feel of rosary beads. I love the symmetry. I love the repetition. The meditation of the prayers. I love the multisensorial experience.

Or at least I hope I will.

This was the first time I prayed the rosary.

I'm not Catholic.

I'm Protestant.

We totally got ripped off on the meditative prayer-bead rituals. So, I'm borrowing. I hope y'all don't mind. If you do, just pretend they're my worry beads.

Because the only other scripture I have memorized is the 15th Psalm, which I had to learn in college for my sorority. And the only way I could memorize it was to use a TV evangelist voice.

I wish I had audio capabilities here in the hospital to give you a sample of my rendition of what has to be one of the lamest Psalms to ever commit to memory (but awesome in a TV evangelist voice).

"Lord, who shall abide in Thy tabernacle? Who shall dwell in Thy holy hill? He that walketh uprightly and worketh righteousness and speaketh the truth in his heart. In whose eyes a vile person is condemned, but he honereth them that feareth the Lord."

It goes on, and on, and on, but I'll spare you. Trust me when I say, it is not a comforting scripture to recite in your hour of need. Fun at parties, though. For now, I'll continue honing my rosary skills.