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, December 18, 2013

Daily Prayer, Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Restore us O God;
let your face shine,
   that we may be saved 
(Psalm 80:2).

Invitatory Psalm 100
Shout triumphantly to the LORD , all the earth!
2 Serve the LORD with celebration!
Come before him with shouts of joy!
3 Know that the LORD is God—
he made us; we belong to him.
We are his people,
the sheep of his own pasture.
4 Enter his gates with thanks;
enter his courtyards with praise!
Thank him! Bless his name!
5 Because the LORD is good,
his loyal love lasts forever;
his faithfulness lasts generation after generation.
[Common English Bible]

Psalm 120
I cried out to the Lord when I was in trouble
   (and he answered me):
2 “Lord, deliver me from lying lips
   and a dishonest tongue!”
6 I’ve lived far too long
   with people who hate peace.
7 I’m for peace,
   but when I speak, they are for war.
[Common English Bible]

Psalm 121
I raise my eyes toward the mountains.
   Where will my help come from?
2 My help comes from the Lord,
   the maker of heaven and earth.
3 God won’t let your foot slip.
   Your protector won’t fall asleep on the job.
4 No! Israel’s protector
   never sleeps or rests!
5 The Lord is your protector;
   the Lord is your shade right beside you.
6 The sun won’t strike you during the day;
   neither will the moon at night.
7 The Lord will protect you from all evil;
   God will protect your very life.
8 The Lord will protect you on your journeys—
   whether going or coming—
   from now until forever from now.
[Common English Bible]

Psalm 122
I rejoiced with those who said to me,
   “Let’s go to the Lord’s house!”
9 For the sake of the Lord our God’s house
   I will pray for your good.
[Common English Bible]

Psalm 123
I raise my eyes to you—
   you who rule heaven.
3 Have mercy on us, Lord! Have mercy
   because we’ve had more than enough shame.
4 We’ve had more than enough mockery from the self-confident,
   more than enough shame from the proud.
[Common English Bible]

Psalm 124
If the Lord hadn’t been for us—
   let Israel now repeat!—
2     if the Lord hadn’t been for us,
       when those people attacked us
3 then they would have swallowed us up whole
       with their rage burning against us!
4 Then the waters would have drowned us;
   the torrent would have come over our necks;
5     then the raging waters would have come over our necks!

6 Bless the Lord
   because he didn’t hand us over
   like food for our enemies’ teeth!
7 We escaped like a bird from the hunters’ trap;
   the trap was broken so we escaped!

8 Our help is in the name of the Lord,
   the maker of heaven and earth.
[Common English Bible]

Daily Lectionary Reading, Isaiah 7:10-16
Again the Lord spoke to Ahaz: 11 “Ask a sign from the Lord your God. Make it as deep as the grave or as high as heaven." 12 But Ahaz said, “I won’t ask; I won’t test the Lord.” 13 Then Isaiah said, “Listen, house of David! Isn’t it enough for you to be tiresome for people that you are also tiresome before my God? 14 Therefore, the Lord will give you a sign. The young woman is pregnant and is about to give birth to a son, and she will name him Immanuel. 15 He will eat butter and honey, and learn to reject evil and choose good. 16 Before the boy learns to reject evil and choose good, the land of the two kings you dread will be abandoned. [Common English Bible]

Prayer for Today: Lord, you have spoken to kings and prophets. Some dared to listen. You have sent signs to convince the timid. Open us to your word and to the messages that you give to us. Through them, teach us to reject evil and choose good. 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
I cry out to you from the depths, Lord—
2 my Lord, listen to my voice!
   Let your ears pay close attention to my request for mercy!
3 If you kept track of sins, Lord—
   my Lord, who would stand a chance?
4 But forgiveness is with you—
   that’s why you are honored.

5 I hope, Lord.
My whole being hopes,
   and I wait for God’s promise.
6 My whole being waits for my Lord—
   more than the night watch waits for morning;
   yes, more than the night watch waits for morning!

7 Israel, wait for the Lord!
   Because faithful love is with the Lord;
   because great redemption is with our God!
8 He is the one who will redeem Israel
   from all its sin.
[Common English Bible]

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