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Faith Daily | 20 October 2021

PRAYER of the DAY - PENTECOST Pentecost 21

Almighty God,

your Son has opened for us

a new and living way into your presence:

give us pure hearts and steadfast wills

to worship you in spirit and in truth;

through the same Jesus Christ our Lord.


GOSPEL for the Day: Luke 12: 39-48

39 ‘But know this: if the owner of the house had known at what hour the thief was coming, he* would not have let his house be broken into. 40You also must be ready, for the Son of Man is coming at an unexpected hour.’

41 Peter said, ‘Lord, are you telling this parable for us or for everyone?’ 42And the Lord said, ‘Who then is the faithful and prudent manager whom his master will put in charge of his slaves, to give them their allowance of food at the proper time? 43Blessed is that slave whom his master will find at work when he arrives. 44Truly I tell you, he will put that one in charge of all his possessions. 45But if that slave says to himself, “My master is delayed in coming”, and if he begins to beat the other slaves, men and women, and to eat and drink and get drunk, 46the master of that slave will come on a day when he does not expect him and at an hour that he does not know, and will cut him in pieces,* and put him with the unfaithful. 47That slave who knew what his master wanted, but did not prepare himself or do what was wanted, will receive a severe beating. 48But one who did not know and did what deserved a beating will receive a light beating. From everyone to whom much has been given, much will be required; and from one to whom much has been entrusted, even more will be demanded.

GOSPEL Reflection: Contributed by: Meredith Scott-McMahon

A superficial reading of this passage would lead us to conclude that Jesus is using a metaphor of the Master for God, a vengeful, punishing God who comes down hard on us for our misdemeanors. The servant takes advantage of the master’s absence, to behave very badly. On the master’s return he is beaten and in my NIV, ‘cut to pieces’.

Can I reconcile this image of God with the God I worship and adore?

My God is a loving forgiving God who longs to live in relationship with us, to guide us with His wisdom, to nurture us with his love, and protect us with his grace.

But when we ignore Him, His teachings, His guidance, and live only according to our own desires we step outside His protection and His grace. He will not break His own rule to allow us free will, but constantly calls us, warns us, and tries to protect us when we wander from His presence.

But we live in a world where severe consequences can result from our blindness, disobedience and selfishness. The world of consequence can be a very harsh master.

But often, when we are brought low by the world and suffer the consequence of our actions, that is the time when we can clearly hear the voice of God, calling us back, teaching us that vital lesson we have been trying to ignore.

Jesus reminds us, in verse 48, that privilege is the other side of responsibility. Those who have the richness of the knowledge of His love, have the great responsibility to live in the world as examples of His message.

FINAL PRAYER: RS Thomas “Raptor”

You have made God small,

setting him astride

a pipette or a retort

studying the bubbles,

absorbed in an experiment

that will come to nothing.

I think of him rather

as an enormous owl

abroad in the shadows,

brushing me sometimes

with his wing so the blood

in my veins freezes, able

to find his way from one

soul to another because

he can see in the dark.

I have heard him crooning

to himself, so that almost

I could believe in angels.

those feathered overtones

in love’s rafters, I have heard

him scream, too, fastening

his talons in his great

adversary, or in some lesser

denizen, maybe, like you or me.

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