Evening Prayer: June 13th

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Psalm: 77
Gospel: Luke 9:9-20
Patristic Reading: N/A couldn’t find a copy online 😦

You keep my eyelids from closing;
I am so troubled that I cannot speak.
I consider the days of old,
and remember the years of long ago.
I commune with my heart in the night;
I meditate and search my spirit:
‘Will the Lord spurn for ever,
and never again be favourable? (Psalm 77:4-7)

Huh. Maybe one of the Psalmists was an insomniac after all :P.

This particular passage of Scripture pretty much sums up my life. Not in terms of outright pessimism…..but definitely in terms of worrying and being heart-sick.

By nature, I’m an over-thinker….I’m one of those people who at 2 and 3am think about life, the universe and everything.

During the time when sane people are sleeping, I lie awake and wonder what will happen next. If the things I have done during the day were good, bad or indifferent.

This is one of the points in the Bible for me that doesn’t so much talk about the nature of God….but of the nature of human beings….or put differently, a time when–instead of us reading Scripture….Scripture reads us.

Our relationship with God is not meant to be static, and it’s not all going to be rose petals. It is in verses like these that I take comfort in the knowledge that people have struggled in the same way that I have…..and that they too have come out on the other side into God’s marvelous Light. +

Evening Prayer: Jan. 21st

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Psalm: 35
Gospel: Mark 4:35-41
Patristic Reading: An excerpt from A Treatise on Spiritual Perfection by St. Diadochus of Photice

If we look at tonight’s Psalm, there is a strong theme of God being an advocate and guide for us:

Contend, O Lord, with those who contend with me; fight against those who fight against me!
Take hold of shield and buckler, and rise up to help me!

Draw the spear and javelin against my pursuers; say to my soul, “I am your salvation.”
Let them be put to shame and dishonour who seek after my life. Let them be turned back and confounded who devise evil against me.
Let them be like chaff before the wind, with the angel of the Lord driving them on. (Psalm 35:1-5)

Similarly in the Gospel reading, Jesus is utterly confident in his Father’s power to save even in the midst of the storm. Being merely human, the disciples are caught up in despair and fear…..which is never a healthy place to be…especially in the midst of crisis :P.

In reality though, it’s natural for us to get scared…to have a diminished amount of faith. Very few of us–I think–would be able to say with confidence that we could physically move mountains; even though Jesus says it is possible.

I think the key to this passage is not necessarily the disappointment in Jesus’ rebuke…..but understanding it as a challenge. A challenge to put our trust in God rather than ourselves. To become confident that God will calm the seas and bring order to what otherwise feels like chaos and destruction.

Christ is asking us to claim the inheritance which he gave to us. We have been adopted as sons and daughters of God…..and with Him all things are possible :D. +

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