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Daily Prayer - 2013-08-27

Presence

As I begin this prayer, God is here.
Around me, in my sensations, in my thoughts and deep within me.
I pause for a moment, and become aware
of God's life-giving presence.

Freedom

God is not foreign to my freedom.
Instead the Spirit breathes life into my most intimate desires,
gently nudging me towards all that is good.
I ask for the grace to let myself be enfolded by the Spirit.

Consciousness

How am I really feeling? Lighthearted? Heavy-hearted?
I may be very much at peace, happy to be here.
Equally, I may be frustrated, worried or angry.
I acknowledge how I really am. It is the real me that the Lord loves.

The Word of God

Matthew 23:23-26

Jesus said, "Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you tithe mint, dill, and cummin, and have neglected the weightier matters of the law: justice and mercy and faith. It is these you ought to have practiced without neglecting the others. You blind guides! You strain out a gnat but swallow a camel! "Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you clean the outside of the cup and of the plate, but inside they are full of greed and self-indulgence. You blind Pharisee! First clean the inside of the cup, so that the outside also may become clean."

Some thoughts on today's scripture

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  • Jesus reserves some of his harshest criticism for those who lay heavy burdens on others. The scribes and Pharisees, in their misguided zeal for the letter of the law, have completely lost sight of the two great commandments on which all of the law rests – to love the Lord our God with all out heart and all our soul and all our might, and to love our neighbour as ourself.
  • I picture myself standing among the Pharisees as Jesus unleashes his anger on them. Do any of his words resonate uncomfortably with me? Have I made unreasonable demands of others, which I am far from meeting myself?

Conversation

Jesus you speak to me through the words of the gospels.
May I respond to your call today.
Teach me to recognise your hand at work in my daily living.

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.