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.

Saturday, February 4, 2012

Daily Prayer, Saturday, February 4, 2012

Praise the Lord!
How good it is to sing praises to you;
   for you are gracious,
   and a song of praise is fitting. (from Psalm 147:1)

MorningInvitatory Psalm 67
God, be gracious to us and bless us
and make your face to shine upon us,
that your way may be known upon earth,
your saving power among all nations.
Let the peoples praise you, O God;
let all the peoples praise you.

Let the nations be glad and sing for joy,
for you judge the peoples with equity
and guide the nations upon earth.
Let the peoples praise you, O God;
let all the peoples praise you.

The earth has yielded its increase;
God, our God, has blessed us.
May God continue to bless us;
let all the ends of the earth revere you.

Psalm 26
Vindicate me, O Lord, for I have walked in my integrity, 

and I have trusted in the Lord without wavering.
Prove me, O Lord, and try me; 

test my heart and mind.
For your steadfast love is before my eyes, 

and I walk in faithfulness to you.
I do not sit with the worthless, 

nor do I consort with hypocrites;
I hate the company of evildoers, 

and will not sit with the wicked.
I wash my hands in innocence, 

and go around your altar, O Lord,
singing aloud a song of thanksgiving, 

and telling all your wondrous deeds.

O Lord, I love the house in which you dwell, 

and the place where your glory abides.
Do not sweep me away with sinners, 

nor my life with the bloodthirsty,
those in whose hands are evil devices, 

and whose right hands are full of bribes.

But as for me, I walk in my integrity; 

redeem me, and be gracious to me.
My foot stands on level ground;

in the great congregation I will bless the Lord.

Psalm 27
The Lord is my light and my salvation; whom shall I fear? 

The Lord is the stronghold of my life; of whom shall I be afraid?
When evildoers assail me to devour my flesh— 

my adversaries and foes— they shall stumble and fall.
Though an army encamp against me, my heart shall not fear; 

though war rise up against me, yet I will be confident.
One thing I asked of the Lord, that will I seek after: 

to live in the house of the Lord all the days of my life, 
to behold the beauty of the Lord, and to inquire in his temple.
For he will hide me in his shelter in the day of trouble; 

he will conceal me under the cover of his tent; 
he will set me high on a rock.

Now my head is lifted up above my enemies all around me, 
and I will offer in his tent sacrifices with shouts of joy; 
I will sing and make melody to the Lord.
Hear, O Lord, when I cry aloud, 

be gracious to me and answer me!
“Come,” my heart says, “seek his face!” 

Your face, Lord, do I seek.

Do not hide your face from me. 

Do not turn your servant away in anger, 
you who have been my help. 
Do not cast me off, 
do not forsake me, O God of my salvation!

If my father and mother forsake me, 

the Lord will take me up.
Teach me your way, O Lord, 

and lead me on a level path because of my enemies.
Do not give me up to the will of my adversaries, 

for false witnesses have risen against me, 
and they are breathing out violence.
I believe that I shall see the goodness of the Lord 

in the land of the living.
Wait for the Lord; be strong, and let your heart take courage; 

wait for the Lord!

Psalm 29
Ascribe to the Lord, O heavenly beings,
ascribe to the Lord glory and strength.
Ascribe to the Lord the glory of his name;
worship the Lord in holy splendor.

The voice of the Lord is over the waters;
the God of glory thunders, the Lord, over mighty waters.
The voice of the Lord is powerful;
the voice of the Lord is full of majesty.
The voice of the Lord breaks the cedars;
the Lord breaks the cedars of Lebanon.

He makes Lebanon skip like a calf,
   and Sirion like a young wild ox.
The voice of the Lord flashes forth flames of fire.
The voice of the Lord shakes the wilderness;
the Lord shakes the wilderness of Kadesh.
The voice of the Lord causes the oaks to whirl,
   and strips the forest bare;
   and in his temple all say, “Glory!”

The Lord sits enthroned over the flood;
the Lord sits enthroned as king forever.
May the Lord give strength to his people!
May the Lord bless his people with peace!

Daily Lectionary Reading, Psalm 147:1-11, 20
Praise the LORD ! Because it is good to sing praise to our God! Because it is a pleasure to make beautiful praise! 2 The LORD rebuilds Jerusalem, gathering up Israel’s exiles. 3 God heals the brokenhearted and bandages their wounds. 4 God counts the stars by number, giving each one a name. 5 Our Lord is great and so strong! God’s knowledge can’t be grasped! 6 The LORD helps the poor, but throws the wicked down on the dirt! 7 Sing to the LORD with thanks; sing praises to our God with a lyre! 8 God covers the skies with clouds; God makes rain for the earth; God makes the mountains sprout green grass. 9 God gives food to the animals— even to the baby ravens when they cry out. 10 God doesn’t prize the strength of a horse; God doesn’t treasure the legs of a runner. 11 No. The LORD treasures the people who honor him, the people who wait for his faithful love. 20 God hasn’t done that
with any other nation; those nations have no knowledge of God’s rules. (a)
Praise the LORD !
a  LXX, Tg, DSS (11QPs a ) God hasn’t let those nations know his rules .
[Common English Bible]

Prayer for TodayIt is also right that our hearts and lives continue to sing to
God’s praise, as each day we see the compassion of God
at work in people’s lives. Through the gracious generosity
of God, the earth and all its creatures are sustained and
renewed through the cycles of seasons and their harvests;
and through the cycles of birth, life and death that ensures
the balance of the created world is delicately maintained.
God’s love is actively involved in each and every one of the
cycles, as God guides and blesses the works of God’s fingers. Amen.
If used in shared worship, please provide an acknowledgement as follows:
© 2012 Joan Stott – "The Timeless Psalms" RCL Psalm Year B, used with permission.
Psalm 35:1-3, 9-28
Contend, O Lord, with those who contend with me;
fight against those who fight against me!
Take hold of shield and buckler, and rise up to help me!
Draw the spear and javelin against my pursuers;
say to my soul, “I am your salvation.”

Then my soul shall rejoice in the Lord,
   exulting in his deliverance.
All my bones shall say, “O Lord, who is like you?
You deliver the weak from those too strong for them,
   the weak and needy from those who despoil them.”

Malicious witnesses rise up;
they ask me about things I do not know.
They repay me evil for good; my soul is forlorn.

But as for me, when they were sick, I wore sackcloth;
I afflicted myself with fasting.
I prayed with head bowed on my bosom,
   as though I grieved for a friend or a brother;
I went about as one who laments for a mother,
   bowed down and in mourning.

But at my stumbling they gathered in glee,
they gathered together against me;
ruffians whom I did not know tore at me without ceasing;
they impiously mocked more and more,
   gnashing at me with their teeth.

How long, O Lord, will you look on?
Rescue me from their ravages, my life from the lions!

Then I will thank you in the great congregation;
in the mighty throng I will praise you.

Do not let my treacherous enemies rejoice over me,
   or those who hate me without cause wink the eye.
For they do not speak peace,
   but they conceive deceitful words
   against those who are quiet in the land.

They open wide their mouths against me;
they say, “Aha, Aha, our eyes have seen it.”

You have seen, O Lord; do not be silent!
O Lord, do not be far from me!
Wake up!
Bestir yourself for my defense,
   for my cause, my God and my Lord!
Vindicate me, O Lord, my God,
   according to your righteousness,
   and do not let them rejoice over me.
Do not let them say to themselves,
   “Aha, we have our heart’s desire.”
Do not let them say, “We have swallowed you up.”
Let those who desire my vindication shout for joy
and be glad, and say evermore,
    “Great is the Lord,
    who delights in the welfare of his servant.”
Then my tongue shall tell of your righteousness
   and of your praise all day long.

Psalm 38
O Lord, do not rebuke me in your anger,
   or discipline me in your wrath.
For your arrows have sunk into me,
   and your hand has come down on me.
There is no soundness in my flesh
   because of your indignation;
there is no health in my bones because of my sin.
For my iniquities have gone over my head;
they weigh like a burden too heavy for me.
My wounds grow foul and fester
   because of my foolishness;
I am utterly bowed down and prostrate;
all day long I go around mourning.
For my loins are filled with burning,
   and there is no soundness in my flesh.

I am utterly spent and crushed;
I groan because of the tumult of my heart.
O Lord, all my longing is known to you;
my sighing is not hidden from you.
My heart throbs, my strength fails me;
as for the light of my eyes—it also has gone from me.

My friends and companions stand aloof from my affliction,
   and my neighbors stand far off.
Those who seek my life lay their snares;
those who seek to hurt me speak of ruin,
   and meditate treachery all day long.

But I am like the deaf, I do not hear;
like the mute, who cannot speak.
Truly, I am like one who does not hear,
and in whose mouth is no retort.

But it is for you, O Lord, that I wait;
it is you, O Lord my God, who will answer.

For I pray, “Only do not let them rejoice over me,
    those who boast against me when my foot slips.”
For I am ready to fall, and my pain is ever with me.

I confess my iniquity;
I am sorry for my sin.


Do not forsake me, O Lord;
O my God, do not be far from me;
make haste to help me, O Lord, my salvation.

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