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Daily Prayer - 2013-02-26

Presence

Lord, you are always there
waiting for me. 
May I never be too busy to
find time to spend in your presence.

Freedom

Lord, you created me to live in freedom.
May your Holy Spirit guide me to follow you freely.
Instil in my heart a desire
To know and love you more each day.

Consciousness

I exist in a web of relationships - links to nature, people, God.
I trace out these links, giving thanks for the life that flows through them.
Some links are twisted or broken: I may feel regret, anger, disappointment.
I pray for the gift of acceptance and forgiveness.

The Word of God

Matthew 23:1-12

Then Jesus said to the crowds and to his disciples, "The scribes and the Pharisees sit on Moses' seat; therefore, do whatever they teach you and follow it; but do not do as they do, for they do not practice what they teach. They tie up heavy burdens, hard to bear, and lay them on the shoulders of others; but they themselves are unwilling to lift a finger to move them. They do all their deeds to be seen by others; for they make their phylacteries broad and their fringes long. They love to have the place of honour at banquets and the best seats in the synagogues, and to be greeted with respect in the marketplaces, and to have people call them rabbi. But you are not to be called rabbi, for you have one teacher, and you are all students. And call no one your father on earth, for you have one Father - the one in heaven. Nor are you to be called instructors, for you have one instructor, the Messiah. The greatest among you will be your servant. All who exalt themselves will be humbled, and all who humble themselves will be exalted."

Some thoughts on today's scripture

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  • Jesus was especially critical of the Pharisees and Matthew’s Gospel more critical than the other three. But these were people who prayed and who were faithful to the teachings of the Jewish faith. Yet Jesus is recorded as being actively opposed to their teachings. Or is it their preachings?
  • Faith in the God of the Jews and the Christians has to offer a way through life’s journey and not impossible burdens to bear in the form of absolute rules. Personal and pastoral discernment is needed.
  • Pope Francis offers some guidance with the process of personal “discernment”: “When a responsible and tactful person, who does not presume to put his her own desires ahead of the common good of the Church, meets with a pastor capable of acknowledging the seriousness of the matter before him, there can be no risk that a specific discernment may lead people to think that the Church maintains a double standard”.

Conversation

Dear Lord, stay by my side always.
Gain for me a trusting heart.
Thank you for loving me.

Conclusion

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit,
As it was in the beginning,
is now and ever shall be,
world without end.

Amen

If you appreciated the daily prayer or have any suggestions or insights we will be glad to hear from you.