I am an emeritus professor from Cornell University and was a Commissioned Lay Preacher in the Presbyterian Church (USA). For many years I have followed the Daily Lectionary as printed in the Mission Yearbook of my church. For each day of a two-year cycle, the lectionary lists four psalms and three other scriptural passages--usually one from the Old Testament and two from the New Testament. My practice is to copy down a verse or two from one of the psalms and from each of the other three passages. After I have written out all four selections, I reflect upon them, rearrange their order, and incorporate them into a meditation. Sometimes I retain much of the original wording; sometimes all that remains of a selection is an idea that was stimulated when I read the original words. All selections are from the New Revised Standard Version of the Bible. For the Daily Lectionary, see the link below.

Pain and Anguish in God's Vineyard--March 23, 2016

God, we have much distress and anguish of heart;
the tenants have seized your Beloved Son
and they are going to kill him.
Have you forgotten your
abundant love?

Give ear to our words;
heed our sighing, dear God.
Without him our guidance is gone--
your prophets obtain no visions from you.

Lectionary Readings
Ps. 5; 147:1-11; 27; 51
Lam. 2:1-9
2 Cor. 1:23-2:11
Mark 12:1-11

Selected Verses
Ps. 5:1
Give ear to my words, O LORD;
          give heed to my sighing. 

Lam. 2:9
[The gates of daughter Zion] have sunk into the ground; [the LORD] has ruined and broken her bars; her king and princes are among the nations; guidance is no more, and her prophets obtain no vision from the LORD.

2 Cor. 2:4
For I wrote you out of much distress and anguish of heart and with many tears, not to cause you pain, but to let you know the abundant love that I have for you.

Mark 12:8
"…So [the tenants] seized [the beloved son of the owner], killed him, and threw him out of the vineyard.  …"  [From Jesus' parable of the vineyard]

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