Wednesday, 25 November 2015

26 November 2015


Prayers developed from the daily readings 

Thursday 26 November 2015 
Morning Prayer

Psalms 65 and 70

Psalm 65 is a glorious hymn of praise to God, who forgives us, saves us, satisfies our souls and creates the world and everything in it. In particular it gives praise the food we receive at harvest time.

Psalm 70 is a plea for help in time of urgent need. It asks for those who seek harm to be confused and turned back and those who seek God to rejoice and give praise.

2 Kings 24: 10 – 25: 7

King Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon’s troops surround Jerusalem. King Jehoiakim surrenders. He and all his family, officials and the artisans of he city are taken to Babylon. All precious things in the temple and the palace are taken. Jehoiakim’s uncle is made King in his place and his name is changed to Zedekiah. Zedekiah is 21 at the start of his rule. He reigns 11 years and does evil things.

Zedekiah rebels against King Nebuchadnezzar and for two years the city is under siege. The famine that results is severe. Zedekiah escapes, is pursued, his children are killed in his sight then his eyes are put out and he is taken to Babylon in fetters.

Mark 2: 18 – 3: 6

Jesus is asked to explain why his disciples do not fast. He explains that people at a wedding feast don’t fast while the bridegroom is with them. He explains using cloth and wineskins that the old ways are right for the old ways and there are now new ways. Trying to put old and new together causes rifts and bursts.

Jesus is also questioned about why his disciples plucked grain while walking through a field on the Sabbath. Jesus reminds the questioners that even King David allowed his soldiers to eat sanctified food – only for priests because they were hungry. Equally, God made the Sabbath for people, not people for the Sabbath – it is permissible to meet people’s needs.

Jesus enters the synagogue on the Sabbath. He sees a man with a withered hand. Jesus asks, “Is it lawful to do good or harm on the Sabbath, to save life or to kill?” (v.4). The hearers remain silent. Jesus, angry that their hearts are so hard, heals the man’s hand. The Pharisees go immediately and conspire with the Herodians to destroy Jesus.

Collect for Morning Prayer

Into the heart of the flower
Milawa Vic L Osburn
 Wonderful God, teacher, coach and healer you look right into our hearts and our deeper purposes. You can see when we rebel against your love for us and for every human. Help us to turn our questions and challenges to ourselves. Help us to soften our hearts so that we truly love you, give you thanks and praise for all your blessings, love each other and act in ways that show the compassion that underpins all your commandments through Jesus Christ your Son our Lord, and the power of your Holy Spirit. Amen.

Thursday 26 November 2015
Evening Prayer

Psalm 66

A great song of praise to God: “Make a joyful noise to God, all the earth” (v 1).  The psalmist lists the gifts of God and particularly that prayers are answered. God is a God of steadfast love.

Ecclesiastes 9: 17 – 10: 15

Quiet words of wisdom are more valuable than any leader shouting at fools. But it only takes one bungler to undo a lot of good things. The fool’s heart inclines to the opposite direction of the wise and even when they are with us – on the road – their lack of sense is obvious.

If a ruler is angry, stay clam and don’t leave your post.
The biggest evil under the sun is being foolish and it affects the rich as well as the poor. As examples: if you make a trap – you yourself will be caught in it; if you break through a wall you will be bitten – like a snake bite; if you dig up stones what you get will hurt you; if you split logs you can be endangered; if your axe is blunt you need to use more effort, but if you are wise you can do it and; if a snake bites before it is charmed there’s no point having a charmer.

If you are wise what you say brings favour but if you are foolish your words will consume you – it starts out foolish then degenerates into madness – yet fools will continue to talk.

Revelation 12: 7 - 18

War breaks out in heaven. Michael and angels fight the dragon and its angels. The dragon (Satan the deceiver, the accuser) defeats the angels and falls to earth. The voice proclaims the coming of the Kingdom of God and the authority of the Messiah. God’s people have conquered by the blood of the Lamb, their testimony and by not clinging to life even in the face of death. The heavens are to rejoice but earth will have woe, for Satan is full of wrath and knows that time is up.

The dragon pursues the woman but wings and the earth itself protect her. The dragon takes a stand by the sea.

Collect for Evening Prayer

The nearly empty lake
Lake Mulwala L Osburn
Holy and almighty Lord you are our source of steadfast and everlasting love. At the end of this day be with us as we reflect on our words, thoughts and actions. Help us to see where we were foolish. Grow your wisdom in us. Help us to recognise when we lacked compassion or understanding for people who do foolish things. Assist us to put their words and actions into perspective and remember that there is the accuser who even your angels cannot conquer, a more serious foe than any fool and for whom we have a Saviour and Messiah, so that we can lift up our voices to you in songs of joyful praise through Jesus Christ your Son our Lord, and the power of your Holy Spirit in our hearts. Amen.

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