It took a year to read the Bible, then almost 9 months to read the Apocrypha. Now, I'm going to try to offer reflections on the Narrative Lectionary. But, I won't be posting daily--at least, for a while.

Monday, September 19, 2011

Daily Prayer, Monday, September 19, 2011

O Lord, I love the house in which you dwell, and the place where your glory abides.

Invitatory Psalm 95
O come, let us sing to the Lord:
let us make a joyful noise to the rock of our salvation!
We come into your presence with thanksgiving;
we make a joyful noise to you with songs of praise.
You, Lord, are a great God,
In your hands are the depths of the earth;
the heights of the mountains are yours also.
The sea is yours, for you have made it,
and the dry land, which your hands have formed.
O come, let us worship and bow down,
let us we kneel before our Maker!
For you are our God,
and we are the people of your pasture,
and the sheep of your hand.
Psalm 34
I will bless the Lord at all times;
   your praise shall continually be in my mouth.
My soul makes its boast in the Lord;
   let the humble hear and be glad.
O magnify the Lord with me...
I sought you, O Lord, and you answered me,
and delivered me from all my fears.
O taste and see that the Lord is good;
   happy are those who take refuge in you.
Come, O children, listen to me; I will teach you the fear of the Lord.
Which of you desires life, and covets many days to enjoy good?
Keep your tongue from evil, and your lips from speaking deceit.
Depart from evil, and do good; seek peace, and pursue it.
The Lord is near to the brokenhearted, and saves the crushed in spirit.
The Lord redeems the life of his servants; none of those who take refuge in him will be condemned.

Daily Lectionary Reading, Matthew 21:23-32
23 When Jesus entered the temple, the chief priests and elders of the people came to him as he was teaching. They asked, “ What kind of authority do you have for doing these things? Who gave you this authority? ” 24 Jesus replied, “ I have a question for you. If you tell me the answer, I’ll tell you what kind of authority I have to do these things. 25 Where did John get his authority to baptize? Did he get it from heaven or from humans? ” They argued among themselves, “ If we say ‘from heaven,’ he’ll say to us, ‘Then why didn’t you believe him?’ 26 But we can’t say ‘from humans’ because we’re afraid of the crowd, since everyone thinks John was a prophet. ” 27 Then they replied, “ We don’t know. ” Jesus also said to them, “Neither will I tell you what kind of authority I have to do these things.

Today's Prayer:
O God, when we come to a place of worship, remind us that we have come to worship you. And when we begin to argue about things, even very important things, remind us to be more concerned about what you want than what people will think about us. Amen.

Midday Psalm 119:41-48


Psalm 46
God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble.
Therefore we will not fear, though the earth should change,
though the mountains shake in the heart of the sea;
though its waters roar and foam, 
though the mountains tremble with its tumult. Selah

There is a river whose streams make glad the city of God, the holy habitation of the Most High.
God is in the midst of the city; it shall not be moved; God will help it when the morning dawns.
The nations are in an uproar, the kingdoms totter; he utters his voice, the earth melts.
The Lord of hosts is with us; the God of Jacob is our refuge. Selah

“Be still, and know that I am God! I am exalted among the nations, I am exalted in the earth.”
The Lord of hosts is with us; the God of Jacob is our refuge. Selah

Psalm 48
Great is the Lord and greatly to be praised in the city of our God. 
We ponder your steadfast love, O God, in the midst of your temple.
Your name, O God, like your praise, reaches to the ends of the earth. 
Your right hand is filled with victory.
Let Mount Zion be glad, let the towns of Judah rejoice because of your judgments.
Walk about Zion, go all around it, count its towers,
consider well its ramparts; go through its citadels, that you may tell the next generation
that this is God, our God forever and ever. He will be our guide forever
Psalm 49
Hear this, all you peoples; give ear, all inhabitants of the world,
both low and high, rich and poor together.
My mouth shall speak wisdom; the meditation of my heart shall be understanding.
I will incline my ear to a proverb; I will solve my riddle to the music of the harp.

Why should I fear in times of trouble, when the iniquity of my persecutors surrounds me,
those who trust in their wealth and boast of the abundance of their riches?
Truly, no ransom avails for one’s life, there is no price one can give to God for it.
For the ransom of life is costly, and can never suffice
that one should live on forever and never see the grave.

When we look at the wise, they die; fool and dolt perish together and leave their wealth to others.
Their graves are their homes forever, their dwelling places to all generations, though they named lands their own.
Mortals cannot abide in their pomp; they are like the animals that perish.
Such is the fate of the foolhardy, the end of those who are pleased with their lot. Selah

Like sheep they are appointed for Sheol; Death shall be their shepherd; straight to the grave they descend, and their form shall waste away; Sheol shall be their home.
But God will ransom my soul from the power of Sheol, for he will receive me. Selah

Do not be afraid when some become rich, when the wealth of their houses increases.
For when they die they will carry nothing away; their wealth will not go down after them.
Though in their lifetime they count themselves happy—for you are praised when you do well for yourself—
they will go to the company of their ancestors, who will never again see the light.
Mortals cannot abide in their pomp; they are like the animals that perish.

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