Morning Prayer: Feast of St. Andrew (Nov. 30th)

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Psalm: 34
Old Testament: Isaiah 49:1-6
New Testament: 1 Cor 4:1-16

We are fools for the sake of Christ, but you are wise in Christ. We are weak, but you are strong. You are held in honour, but we in disrepute. To the present hour we are hungry and thirsty, we are poorly clothed and beaten and homeless, 12and we grow weary from the work of our own hands. (1 Cor 4:10-11)

I freaking love this passage of Scripture! 🙂 Why, you ask? Not because of the poetic language…..though it surely has that quality….but I love this quote because it reminds me that it’s OK to be sarcastic/tongue and cheek and Christian at the same time.

I have yet to find a commentator who agrees with me on this…..but I’m fairly certain that St. Paul is throwing a light jab to the Corinthian community under the guise of advice.

My evidence for this is based back in chapter one where he says that God’s weakness is greater than human strength and that:

God chose what is weak in the world to shame the strong; God chose what is low and despised in the world, things that are not, to reduce to nothing things that are, so that no one might boast in the presence of God. (1 Cor 1:27-28)

So when Paul calls the leaders of the church strong, and he himself weak….he is mocking them slightly and kind of saying Hahaha! I am better than you! 🙂

Now….do I think Paul’s intention is mean-spirited??? No. It is meant as a comment that the people can latch on to…..to recognize where they are going wrong…..and as a message to the people of Corinth to exercise more humility.

It’s passages like these that remind me that Paul, Andrew, and the other saints were human beings. They had their own style of preaching, their own foibles, and even their own sense of humour.

As we move further into Advent, let us strive to be weak, despised, and lower than anyone else. As a Christian people this is a calling of service…..in stark contrast to the culture of individualism we come across every day in North America. +

Morning Prayer: Feast of Saints Peter & Paul (June 29th)

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Psalm: 66
Old Testament: Ezekiel 2:1-7
New Testament: Acts 11:1-18

Man…..there’s such good content in today’s readings that I found it really difficult to pick just one focal point. I highly suggest reading through the lections yourself this morning….maybe even leave a comment on this post as to what stuck out the most for you. 🙂

Speaking for myself, I was once again amazed by Peter’s retelling of his dream…..and his initial protest against God:

I also heard a voice saying to me, “Get up, Peter; kill and eat.” But I replied, “By no means, Lord; for nothing profane or unclean has ever entered my mouth.” (Acts 11:7-8)

In both the case of St. Peter and St. Paul…..they were called to do things that–initially–they thought were repugnant. Peter…a devout Jew was asked to eat unclean food and to open the doors of the Jesus community to those who were on the outside.

Saul too was a Jew…..but was asked to show compassion on those whom he labelled heretics…..a people he didn’t feel had the right to even exist. 😛

Both conversions required a metanoia……a change of heart…..a fundamental shift in the way they thought….and a call to a radical way of living.

I wonder how many of us resist the call to Grace???? I pray that on this feast day…..we take courage from the witness of the Church that God is good and can change even the most unlikely people into saints. +

(As a short theological aside, I should add that some theologians say that Grace is irresistible……I am not one of those thinkers ;))

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