I raise my eyes to you—you who rule heaven” (CEB). Immediately I think of the climactic scene in Zora Neale Hurston’s Their Eyes Were Watching God. Janie and her lover, Tea Cake, and their friends have regretfully decided to wait out a hurricane. In the early hours of the storm,...
God of the oppressed, you have revealed yourself to be a liberator of the enslaved, a balm to the downtrodden, and a friend to the lonely. Help us to trust you to be that still. Free us from the crush of oppressive power. And teach us to wield power justly when we hold it. Amen.
Like us, the Israelites struggle to be consistently faithful to God. God therefore allows a foreign king to rule them until the people come to their senses and cry out for help. The prophet Deborah gives instructions for the battle that will begin the deliverance of the people. The readings from Psalms and Zechariah demonstrate that this pattern of unfaithfulness and restoration has occurred frequently in the history of God’s people. In Thessalonians, Paul echoes what Jesus says in last week’s Gospel reading: We must always be prepared for the return of Christ because we do not know when it will occur. God gives us resources to use for the kingdom, and in Matthew Jesus indicates that God will ask for an account of how well we have used them.
Read Judges 4:1-7. Who has been a judge—someone who helps you discern—in your life? How can you help others discern the way?Read Psalm 123. How do you focus on God through conflict and struggle?Read 1 Thessalonians 5:1-11. When have you encouraged someone in a time of darkness? When have you been the one in need of encouragement?Read Matthew 25:14-30. What would change if you considered your dreams and desires as from God? What first step can you take to enact your desires?
Responda publicando una oración.