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Daily Prayer - 2013-12-16

Presence

Dear Lord, you have called me by my name.
You have carved me in the palm of your hand.
May I grow in trust and never give in to despair.

Freedom

Lord I ask for the grace to know
That doing your will is a joy
Because your will is my deepest desire
And you are always willing what is best for me.

Consciousness

Knowing that God loves me unconditionally,
I look honestly over the last day, its events and my feelings.
Do I have something to be grateful for? Then I give thanks.
Is there something I am sorry for? Then I ask forgiveness.

The Word of God

Matthew 21:23-27

When Jesus entered the temple, the chief priests and the elders of the people came to him as he was teaching, and said, "By what authority are you doing these things, and who gave you this authority?" Jesus said to them, "I will also ask you one question; if you tell me the answer, then I will also tell you by what authority I do these things. Did the baptism of John come from heaven, or was it of human origin?" And they argued with one another, "If we say, 'From heaven,' he will say to us, 'Why then did you not believe him?' But if we say, 'Of human origin,' we are afraid of the crowd; for all regard John as a prophet." So they answered Jesus, "We do not know." And he said to them, "Neither will I tell you by what authority I am doing these things." 

Some thoughts on today's scripture

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  • This exchange between Jesus and the elders and chief priests bolsters indirectly the stature of John the Baptist – and, in consequence, his prophecy about One Who Is To Come (called elsewhere, for instance, a star from Jacob who is to lead his people; a royal sceptre-wielder from among Israel).
  • In Jewish circles if someone spoke claiming power and authority, he would be asked about the warranty for his claim - Did he belong to the priestly tribe of Levi? Did his claim have the backing of the tradition of the ancestors? Could he prove his claim through the direct intervention of God – a miracle? In Jesus’ case, he always staked his claim within the latter category - his acts, his ‘works’ were miraculous. (Members of these questioners’ circle had not accepted John’s teaching).
  • In order to sustain a steady faith in the identity of the One Who Was To Come, we ourselves will need, given our weakness, to leave ourselves open to heavenly influence.

Conversation

Lord, I know that when I turn to you there is no need for words.
You can see into my heart.
You know my desires and you know my needs.
I place myself into your hands.

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.