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.

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Daily Prayer, Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Be gracious to me, O Lord, for I am in distress;
my eye wastes away from grief,
my soul and body also....
But I trust is you, O Lord;
I say, “You are my God.”

Invitatory Psalm 100
Make a joyful noise to the Lord, all the earth.
Worship the Lord with gladness;
come into his presence with singing.

Know that the Lord is God.
It is he that made us, and we are his;
we are his people, and the sheep of his pasture.

Enter his gates with thanksgiving,
   and his courts with praise.
Give thanks to him, bless his name.
For the Lord is good;
his steadfast love endures forever,
   and his faithfulness to all generations.

Psalm 120
“Deliver me, O Lord, from lying lips, from a deceitful tongue.”
Too long have I had my dwelling among those who hate peace.
I am for peace; but when I speak, they are for war.

Psalm 121
I lift up my eyes to the hills— from where will my help come?
My help comes from the Lord, who made heaven and earth.
He will not let your foot be moved; he who keeps you will not slumber.
He who keeps Israel will neither slumber nor sleep.
The Lord is your keeper; the Lord is your shade at your right hand.
The sun shall not strike you by day, nor the moon by night.
The Lord will keep you from all evil; he will keep your life.
The Lord will keep your going out and your coming in from this time on and forevermore.

Psalm 122
I was glad when they said to me,
   “Let us go to the house of the Lord!”
Our feet are standing within your gates, O Jerusalem.

Jerusalem—built as a city that is bound firmly together.
To it the tribes go up, the tribes of the Lord,
   as was decreed for Israel,
   to give thanks to the name of the Lord.
For there the thrones for judgment were set up,
   the thrones of the house of David.
Pray for the peace of Jerusalem:
   “May they prosper who love you.
   Peace be within your walls,
      and security within your towers.”

For the sake of my relatives and friends
   I will say, “Peace be within you.”
For the sake of the house of the Lord our God,
   I will seek your good.

Psalm 123
To you I lift up my eyes,
   O you who are enthroned in the heavens!
As the eyes of servants look to the hand of their master,
   as the eyes of a maid to the hand of her mistress,
   so our eyes look to the Lord our God,
   until he has mercy upon us.
Have mercy upon us, O Lord, have mercy upon us,
   for we have had more than enough of contempt.
Our soul has had more than its fill of the scorn
   of those who are at ease,
   of the contempt of the proud.

Psalm 124
If it had not been the Lord who was on our side
—let Israel now say—
if it had not been the Lord who was on our side,
   when our enemies attacked us,
then they would have swallowed us up alive,
   when their anger was kindled against us;
then the flood would have swept us away,
the torrent would have gone over us;
then over us would have gone the raging waters.

Blessed be the Lord, who has not given us as prey to their teeth.
We have escaped like a bird from the snare of the fowlers;
the snare is broken, and we have escaped.

Our help is in the name of the Lord, who made heaven and earth.

Daily Lectionary Reading, Luke 22:14-46

14 When the time came, Jesus took his place at the table, and the apostles joined him. 15 He said to them, “ I have earnestly desired to eat this Passover with you before I suffer. 16 I tell you, I won’t eat it until it is fulfilled in God’s kingdom. ” 17 After taking a cup and giving thanks, he said, “ Take this and share it among yourselves. 18 I tell you that from now on I won’t drink from the fruit of the vine until God’s kingdom has come. ” 19 After taking the bread and giving thanks, he broke it and gave it to them, saying, “ This is my body, which is given for you. Do this in remembrance of me. ” 20 In the same way, he took the cup after the meal and said, “This cup is the new covenant by my blood, which is poured out for you.

21 “ But look! My betrayer is with me; his hand is on this table. 22 The Human One [g] goes just as it has been determined. But how terrible it is for that person who betrays him. ” 23 They began to argue among themselves about which of them it could possibly be who would do this.

24 An argument broke out among the disciples over which one of them should be regarded as the greatest. 25 But Jesus said to them, “The kings of the Gentiles rule over their subjects, and those in authority over them are called ‘friends of the people.’ 26 But that’s not the way it will be with you. Instead, the greatest among you must become like a person of lower status and the leader like a servant. 27 So which one is greater, the one who is seated at the table or the one who serves at the table? Isn’t it the one who is seated at the table? But I am among you as one who serves. 28 “You are the ones who have continued with me in my trials. 29 And I confer royal power on you just as my Father granted royal power to me. 30 Thus you will eat and drink at my table in my kingdom, and you will sit on thrones overseeing the twelve tribes of Israel.

31 “ Simon, Simon, look! Satan has asserted the right to sift you all like wheat. 32 However, I have prayed for you that your faith won’t fail. When you have returned, strengthen your brothers and sisters. ” 33 Peter responded, “ Lord, I’m ready to go with you, both to prison and to death! ” 34 Jesus replied, “ I tell you, Peter, the rooster won’t crow today before you have denied three times that you know me. ”

35 Jesus said to them, “ When I sent you out without a wallet, bag, or sandals, you didn’t lack anything, did you? ”

They said, “ Nothing. ”

36 Then he said to them, “ But now, whoever has a wallet must take it, and likewise a bag. And those who don’t own a sword must sell their clothes and buy one. 37 I tell you that this scripture must be fulfilled in relation to me: And he was counted among criminals. [h] Indeed, what’s written about me is nearing completion. ”

38 They said to him, “ Lord, look, here are two swords. ”

He replied, “ Enough of that! ”

39 Jesus left and made his way to the Mount of Olives, as was his custom, and the disciples followed him. 40 When he arrived, he said to them, “Pray that you won’t give in to temptation.” 41 He withdrew from them about a stone’s throw, knelt down, and prayed. 42 He said, “ Father, if it’s your will, take this cup of suffering away from me. However, not my will but your will must be done. ” 43 Then a heavenly angel appeared to him and strengthened him. 44 He was in anguish and prayed even more earnestly. His sweat became like drops of blood falling on the ground. 45 When he got up from praying, he went to the disciples. He found them asleep, overcome by grief. 46 He said to them, “ Why are you sleeping? Get up and pray so that you won’t give in to temptation. ”
g  Or Son of Man
h  Isa 53:12
[Common English Bible]

Prayer for today: Strengthen our faith. Strengthen our will to overcome temptations. Keep us faithful to the message you have entrusted to us. Amen.

Midday Psalm 119:153-160
Look on my misery and rescue me,
  for I do not forget your law.
Plead my cause and redeem me;
  give me life according to your promise.
Salvation is far from the wicked,
  for they do not seek your statutes.
Great is your mercy, O Lord;
  give me life according to your justice.
Many are my persecutors and my adversaries,
  yet I do not swerve from your decrees.
I look at the faithless with disgust,
  because they do not keep your commands.
Consider how I love your precepts;
  preserve my life according to your steadfast love.
The sum of your word is truth;
  and every one of your righteous ordinances endures forever.

Psalm 130
Out of the depths I cry to you, O Lord.
Lord, hear my voice!
Let your ears be attentive to the voice of my supplications!
If you, O Lord, should mark iniquities,
   Lord, who could stand?
But there is forgiveness with you,
   so that you may be revered.
I wait for the Lord, my soul waits,
   and in your word I hope;
my soul waits for the Lord
   more than those who watch for the morning,
   more than those who watch for the morning.

O Israel, hope in the Lord!
For with the Lord there is steadfast love,
   and with him is great power to redeem.

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