Faith Daily | 21 July 2022
PRAYER of the DAY - APBA p563
you alone can order our unruly wills and affections:
teach us to love what you command,
and to desire what you promise,
that, among the changes and chances of this world,
our hearts may surely there be fixed
where true joys are to be found;
through Jesus Christ our Lord.
GOSPEL for the Day: Matthew 13: 10-17
10 Then the disciples came and asked him, ‘Why do you speak to them in parables?’ 11He answered, ‘To you it has been given to know the secrets of the kingdom of heaven, but to them it has not been given. 12For to those who have, more will be given, and they will have an abundance; but from those who have nothing, even what they have will be taken away. 13The reason I speak to them in parables is that “seeing they do not perceive, and hearing they do not listen, nor do they understand.” 14With them indeed is fulfilled the prophecy of Isaiah that says: “You will indeed listen, but never understand, and you will indeed look, but never perceive. 15 For this people’s heart has grown dull, and their ears are hard of hearing, and they have shut their eyes; so that they might not look with their eyes, and listen with their ears, and understand with their heart and turn— and I would heal them.” 16But blessed are your eyes, for they see, and your ears, for they hear. 17Truly I tell you, many prophets and righteous people longed to see what you see, but did not see it, and to hear what you hear, but did not hear it.
GOSPEL REFLECTION: Rev’d Jan
It is always timely to be reminded that being open to God’s word and presence in our life can only be about that willingness and God’s grace. It is in our understanding and appreciating that this presence cannot be earned, or gained, through academic know-how or material standing in the world. Indeed, the childlike, accepting and marvelling faith is what is needed.
When son Lachlan was five, we went through a tedious (to me) conversation about who and how everything was made. (this is the child who always asked as you backed out of the driveway ‘are we there yet’?). Anyway, in the conversation we would track an item like a chair… through the shop, the factory, the forest, creation. Many items later, I finally said in some exasperation ‘ you know, in the end and the beginning, everything has come from God’. He looked at me and said ‘awesome’, and went off quite happily.
Open lively hearts, open looking eyes, open listening ears… and a preparedness to accept mystery, as well as profound gratitude. It’s as simple, and demanding, as that.
FINAL PRAYER Jim Cotter “Unfolding the Living Word”
Living Presence, quiet, hidden,
sowing the seed within us in great hope,
may we not reject it through hardness of heart,
but let it take root
so that we may be
strong enough to bear with troubles,
discerning enough to resist the lures of security,
and patient enough to give the time for ripening,
to the good of others and to our own lasting joy.
We pray this after the pattern of Jesus
and in the power of the Spirit.