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Daily Prayer - 2019-07-15

Presence

As I begin this prayer, God is present,
breathing life into me and into everything around me.
For a few moments, I remain silent,
and become aware of God's loving presence.

Freedom

Thank you God for my freedom
May I use this gift to do what I can
for those who are oppressed or burdened.

Consciousness

I ask how I am within myself today?
Am I particularly tired, stressed, or off-form?
If any of these characteristics apply,
can I try to let go of the concerns that disturb me?

The Word of God

Matthew 10:34-11:1

Jesus said, 'Do not think that I have come to bring peace to the earth; I have not come to bring peace, but a sword. For I have come to set a man against his father, and a daughter against her mother, and a daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law; and one's foes will be members of one's own household.
Whoever loves father or mother more than me is not worthy of me; and whoever loves son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me; and whoever does not take up the cross and follow me is not worthy of me. Those who find their life will lose it, and those who lose their life for my sake will find it.

'Whoever welcomes you welcomes me, and whoever welcomes me welcomes the one who sent me. Whoever welcomes a prophet in the name of a prophet will receive a prophet's reward; and whoever welcomes a righteous person in the name of a righteous person will receive the reward of the righteous; and whoever gives even a cup of cold water to one of these little ones in the name of a disciple—truly I tell you, none of these will lose their reward.'

Now when Jesus had finished instructing his twelve disciples, he went on from there to teach and proclaim his message in their cities.

Some thoughts on today's scripture

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  • A ‘prophet’, in the Bible, is not principally someone who can foresee the future; rather a prophet is someone who is sent to proclaim God’s message to the people. Inevitably, this will sometimes lead to confrontation : the prophet is not sent simply to confirm people in the life-choices they have made.
  • Jesus himself warned his disciples that “if they have persecuted me, they will persecute you” – and he condemned the hostility that led people to kill the prophets in the past.
  • Here he warns his disciples that if they give sincere witness to the way of life he is proposing, this could sometimes mean putting their life in danger. It could also mean setting family members against one another. (We recall some family members pointing out that Saint Thomas More was risking mortal danger, by making a stand in conscience against the king).
  • When he appeared to Saul (later Paul) as he was rounding-up Christians, Jesus said, “I am Jesus, whom you are persecuting”. But in the same way whenever we welcome a disciple and his message, Jesus can say, “Anyone who welcomes you, welcomes me”.

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

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