Faith Daily | 22 October 2021
PRAYER of the DAY - PENTECOST Pentecost 21
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: 54-59
54 He also said to the crowds, ‘When you see a cloud rising in the west, you immediately say, “It is going to rain”; and so it happens. 55And when you see the south wind blowing, you say, “There will be scorching heat”; and it happens. 56You hypocrites! You know how to interpret the appearance of earth and sky, but why do you not know how to interpret the present time?
57 ‘And why do you not judge for yourselves what is right? 58Thus, when you go with your accuser before a magistrate, on the way make an effort to settle the case,* or you may be dragged before the judge, and the judge hand you over to the officer, and the officer throw you in prison. 59I tell you, you will never get out until you have paid the very last penny.’
GOSPEL Reflection: Contributed by: Rev’d Sandra
In today’s reading we are reminded that in a farming community the farmer depends directly on the weather for their livelihood. So, they are highly skilled at interpreting the signs of wind direction and clouds bringing rain for a successful harvest.
Yet, Jesus was saying it is equally as important – even more so – for his followers to be able to interpret signs of the times and the coming of God’s kingdom. Jesus sounds a little frustrated with the crowds who gathered to listen to him preach. He appears to be upset that they are ignoring, or seemingly unable to interpret what is happening in the present time. So he asks the people “Why do you not judge for yourself what is right?” and he gives the example of a person going with an opponent to see a magistrate for a fair judgment and how it would be wise to try and settle the matter before you reach court. For if you end up before the judge it is possible that the judge may send you to prison until you can pay your accuser all that you owe them.
I believe that Jesus is trying to stress that he wants us to be attentive to the many signs around us. Some of the signs we receive are from God. Other signs may come from the people in our lives, and still other signs can be gleaned from what we witness in the world around us.
It is tragic that many of the signs we see around us in the daily news are violent and painful. Yet, we also see great beauty, love and self-giving in the midst of pain and tragedy. So we are invited to ask ourselves “How do we interpret our present time?” Do we ignore the signs before our eyes? Or do we strive to make sense of it all in light of the teachings of Jesus?
Are we tempted to ignore the pain and suffering of those in the world who are in need of loving care and prayer? Jesus reminds us how much we need to be good at observing the signs of the soul, the signs of the times, and the signs of the Spirit that we may make wise choices in line with Kingdom thinking.
FINAL PRAYER: St Francis de Sales - Set Your Heart Free
You see all things and know all that there is.
Your understanding is beyond measure
and your knowledge is perfect.
Teach us, Lord, that we may walk
in your wisdom.
Guide our steps and direct our thoughts.
Open our eyes that we may make wise choices
according to your holy will, in Jesus’ name.