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Daily Prayer - 2013-07-04

Presence

Lord, help me to be fully alive to your Holy presence.
Enfold me in your love.
Let my heart become one with yours.

Freedom

Lord, I pray for your gift of freedom.
May your Holy Spirit
guide those in power to work for
equality for all your people.

Consciousness

My soul longs for your presence, Lord.
When I turn my thoughts to you,
I find peace and contentment.

The Word of God

Matthew 9:1-8

And after getting into a boat he crossed the sea and came to his own town. And just then some people were carrying a paralyzed man lying on a bed. When Jesus saw their faith, he said to the paralytic, "Take heart, son; your sins are forgiven." Then some of the scribes said to themselves, "This man is blaspheming." But Jesus, perceiving their thoughts, said, "Why do you think evil in your hearts? For which is easier, to say, 'Your sins are forgiven,' or to say, 'Stand up and walk'? But so that you may know that the Son of Man has authority on earth to forgive sins" - he then said to the paralytic - "Stand up, take your bed and go to your home." And he stood up and went to his home. When the crowds saw it, they were filled with awe, and they glorified God, who had given such authority to human beings.

Some thoughts on today's scripture

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  • We are celebrating the Year of Mercy, and this episode is a reminder of the quality of the mercy which Jesus came to proclaim. Jesus does not let them ask him to cure the paralytic, he talks first. His are words of encouragement, the phrase we find so often throughout the Bible - 'Take heart...your sins are forgiven'. Sometimes I might think that I have no sins, or that my sins are too big or shameful to be forgiven by Jesus. But Jesus is upset that his power to forgive sins is put into doubt, and is quick to prove he has this power.
  • Jesus cured the paralytic when he saw the faith of those who carried him! Who are those I carry in faith, in prayer, in companionship and compassion? Who are those whose faith, at one time or another in my life, carried my weak self to Jesus?

Conversation

Do I notice myself reacting as I pray with the Word of God?
Do I feel challenged, comforted, angry?
Imagining Jesus sitting or standing by me,
I speak out my feelings, as one trusted friend to another.

Conclusion

I thank God for these few moments we have spent alone together and for any insights I may have been given concerning the text.

Amen

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