Friday, September 7, 2012
Begin by praying the Collect for Grace and Collect for Purity:
Collect for Grace:
Lord God, almighty and everlasting Father, you have brought us safely to this new day: Preserve us with your mighty power, that we may not fall into sin, nor be overcome by adversity; and in all we do, direct us to the fulfilling of your purpose; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
Collect for Purity:
Almighty God, to you all hearts are open, all desires known, and from you no secrets are hidden: Cleanse the thoughts of our hearts by the inspiration of your Holy Spirit, that we might perfectly love you, and worthily magnify your holy name; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
Read: Psalm 146, Isaiah 32:1-8, and Romans 2:12-16
The theme from the first part of the week is repeated, with St. Paul telling us to be doers of what we’ve heard, not just hearers only. It can be hard work, but Jesus asks us to deny ourselves and follow him.
It’s pretty easy to be a passive Christian. Just show up at church every week or two and sit through an hour service. If you time it right, you can even have a nap. We do get a bit upset if the preacher is holding us accountable for something – we’d rather hear that we’re going to go to heaven when we die. We don’t have time for any of this “repent and sin no more” stuff.
But Jesus is a whole lot less interested in the sweet bye and bye than we are. Jesus expects us to deny ourselves, take up the cross, and follow him. Jesus expects growth.
Take time to pray about this. Are you a passive listener, or an active follower? What do you need to do differently? Write your own prayer.