Faith Daily | 20 October 2022
PRAYER of the DAY - APBA p593
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 truth;
through the same Jesus Christ our Lord.
GOSPEL for the Day: Luke 12: 49-53
49 ‘I came to bring fire to the earth, and how I wish it were already kindled! 50I have a baptism with which to be baptized, and what stress I am under until it is completed! 51Do you think that I have come to bring peace to the earth? No, I tell you, but rather division! 52From now on, five in one household will be divided, three against two and two against three; 53they will be divided: father against son and son against father, mother against daughter and daughter against mother, mother-in-law against her daughter-in-law and daughter-in-law against mother-in-law.’
GOSPEL REFLECTION: Penny Graham
Here we have a rare insight into the frustration & stress that Jesus experienced as he approached Jerusalem and the completion of his mission. It is interesting of note that the opposite of peace for Jesus is not war, but division in the family. It is as if Jesus is experiencing the labour pains of giving birth to a new family. The challenge is that to enter this new family is to enter the family of Jesus, and the way he lives.
Being divisive is not something that sits comfortably with us when we think about the reign of God on Christianity. Even to ponder divisions in Christianity is sad. Trying to live with Christian values in a society that celebrates secularization and the commodification of life is very challenging, for not everyone will like the truth that Christians endeavour to witness to, by word or action.
Think of your life at this moment in time, where do you find that your values of faith cause others to feel uncomfortable or may even bring division. Is it better to have the reign of God? Take time to invite the Lord to be with you especially in these types of situations. Ask him to guide and strengthen as you need.
Living my faith passionately will certainly involve me in conflict, even at the deepest levels of my life and relationships. I ask for freedom and wisdom and God’s love to be able to deal with such conflicts.
FINAL PRAYER Paradox Blessing from “Celtic Daily Prayer, Book Two”
May God bless you with discomfort at easy answers,
half-truths, superficial relationships,
so that you will live deep within your heart.
May God bless you with anger at injustice,
oppression and exploitation of people,
so that you will work for justice, equity and peace.
May God bless you with tears to shed
for those who suffer from pain, rejection, starvation and war,
so that you will reach out your hand to comfort them
and change their pain to joy.
And may God bless you with the foolishness to think
that you can make a difference in the world,
so that you will do the things which others tell you
cannot be done.