Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Good News

Tuesday, January 11, 2011 -- Week of 1 Epiphany, Year One

To read about our daily commemorations, go to our Holy Women, Holy Men blog:
http://liturgyandmusic.wordpress.com/category/holy-women-holy-men/

Today's Readings for the Daily Office
(Book of Common Prayer, p. 942)
Psalms 5, 6 (morning)       10, 11 (evening)
Isaiah 40:25-31
Ephesians 1:15-23
Mark 1:14-28

There is so much good news in today's readings. 

In the Gospel, we have the inauguration of Jesus' public ministry.  After his cousin John the Baptist is arrested, Jesus begins his work, saying, "The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God has come near; repent, and believe in the good news."  He calls the fishermen Simon and Andrew, James and John.  Then he enters the synagogue in Capernaum, a town on the shore of the Sea of Galilee.  There he teaches with authority about the good news and he casts out an unclean spirit, bringing good news, liberation, to a man in bondage. 

The reading from Second Isaiah (chapters 40-55 are attributed to a disciple writing 200 years after the original Isaiah) picks up the theme of God's authority and greatness.  It concludes with a lyrical and inspiring passage:
   Have you not known? Have you not heard?
   The Lord is the everlasting God,
      the Creator of the ends of the earth.
   He does not faint or grow weary;
      his understanding is unsearchable.
   He gives power to the faint,
      and strengthens the powerless.
   Even youths will faint and be weary,
      and the young will fall exhausted;
   but those who wait for the Lord shall renew their strength,
      they shall mount up with wings like eagles,
   they shall run and not be weary,
      they shall walk and not faint.

And finally we have a beautiful prayer from the author of the letter to the Ephesians.  The writer lets the congregation know of his prayers for them.  Then he offers a prayer.  It is not a bad way to open our day today -- let the apostle offer this prayer for you:

"I pray that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, may give you a spirit of wisdom and revelation as you come to know him, so that, with the eyes of your heart enlightened, you may know what is the hope to which he has called you, what are the riches of his glorious inheritance among the saints, and what is the immeasurable greatness of his power for us who believe."

The writer then closes with an ascription of the ultimate power that God has given Christ, a description of authority and greatness that is not unlike 2 Isaiah's words of the Creator. 

As this morning begins, may the eyes of our hearts be enlightened to know the hope and inheritance we have been given, the power to renew our strength to fly

Lowell

__________________

Audio podcast:  Listen to an audio podcast of the most recent Morning Reflections from today and the past week.  Click the following link:
--
Morning Reflection Podcasts

About Morning Reflections
"Morning Reflections" is a brief thought about the scripture readings from the Daily Office of Morning and Evening Prayer according to the practice found in the Book of Common Prayer of the Episcopal Church.

Morning Prayer begins on p. 80 of the Book of Common Prayer.
Evening Prayer begins on p. 117
An online resource for praying the Daily Office is found at missionstclare.com -- Click for online Daily Office
Another form of the office from Phyllis Tickle's "Divine Hours" is available on our partner web site www.ExploreFaith.org at this location -- http://explorefaith.org/prayer/fixed/index.html --  Click for Divine Hours

Discussion Blog:  To comment on today's reflection or readings, go to http://lowellsblog.blogspot.com, or click here for Lowell's blog find today's reading, click "comment" at the bottom of the reading, and post your thoughts.

The Mission of St. Paul's Episcopal Church
is to explore and celebrate
God's infinite grace, acceptance, and love.

See our Web site at www.stpaulsfay.org

Our Rule of Life: 
We aspire to...
    worship weekly
    pray daily
    learn constantly
    serve joyfully 
    live generously.

Lowell Grisham, Rector
St. Paul's Episcopal Church
Fayetteville, Arkansas


3 Comments:

At 4:25 AM, Anonymous janet said...

Most uplifting - reminds me of a classic from literature -

The Little Prince," by Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

'And now here is my secret, a very simple secret: It is only with the heart that one can see rightly; what is essential is invisible to the eye.'

But not so simple as it sounds.

Peace and Blessings,
Janet

 
At 7:55 AM, Blogger Lowell said...

I'm sure I read "The Little Prince" -- or had it read to me -- but I can't remember it.
Lowell

 
At 8:30 AM, Anonymous janet said...

Oh my! I have a copy handy. Do you want to borrow it? It is a very important book, short, but fileed with the knowing innocence philosophy... in my humble opinion. All about boa constrictors and stars and sunsets and flowers. Janet

 

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