I had an unexpected experience recently. As discussed in other threads, as well as prayer and penace, I also practice, stutteringly, disciplined meditation techniques such bas breathing exercises. Normally I manage up to 15 to 20 minutes of serious mediatiton before I lose concentration. I normally simply lie down or am in a seated position whilst meditating.
Yesterday however I chose to sit cross legged, probably simply because the view from my hotel balcony was a wonderous site but the balcony was very small so cross legged seemed the best option. Having settled into a breathing rhythm and looking out over God's creation, I closed my eyes and began my exercise. Now to the point:
I managed about 5 minutes before the pain in my knees and other tendons became very noticeable. I recognised this pain as not of the 'serious' kind, ie, I was not doing myself any real damage, it was just that my limbs were not used to being in such a position. I decided to take advantage of my already meditative state to begin some prayers that I sometimes use when wearing the cilice chain. The pain became intolerable about 10 minutes later and I ceased my meditation/penance. It was a rewarding experience and I gave thanks to God for showing me that oppurtunity, especially as hotel rooms and visits abroad have been problematic for me in the past and this prayerful time on the balcony showed me once more how fortunate I am to have found redemption in the Lord.
Does anyone else have experience of this type of penance?
“Now I rejoice in my sufferings for your sake, and in my flesh I complete what is lacking in Christ’s afflictions for the sake of his body, that is, the church” (St. Paul, Col. 1:24).