I pause for a moment
and reflect on God's life-giving presence
in every part of my body, in everything around me,
in the whole of my life.
Daily Prayer - 2013-02-26
I pause for a moment
Lord, may I never take the gift of freedom for granted.
You gave me the great blessing of freedom of spirit.
Fill my spirit with Your peace and Your joy.
How wonderful it is to be able
to enter into your presence Lord.
No matter what time it is.
No matter which land I am in.
I need only to speak your name.
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
- 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”.
Begin to talk to Jesus about the piece of scripture you have just read.
What part of it strikes a chord in you?
Perhaps the words of a friend - or some story you have heard recently -
will slowly rise to the surface of your consciousness.
If so, does the story throw light on what the scripture passage may be trying to say to you?
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.
If you appreciated the daily prayer or have any suggestions or insights we will be glad to hear from you.
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