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.

Our Help and Shield--Apr. 18, 2016

God, our help and shield; we trust in you.
Forgive how quickly we have turned aside
from the way that you have commanded us.
Jesus blessed the pure in heart; ours are impure.
Forgive us, and teach us to devote ourselves to you
in prayer, always keeping alert in it with thanksgiving.

Lectionary Readings
Ps. 97; 145; 124; 115
Exod. 32:1-20
Col. 3:18-4:18
Matt. 5:1-10

Selected Verses
Ps. 115:4
 O Israel, trust in the LORD!
          He is their help and their shield. 

Exod. 32:8
“…[your people] have been quick to turn aside from the way that I commanded them; they have cast for themselves an image of a calf, and have worshiped it and sacrificed to it, and said, 'These are your gods, O Israel, who brought you up out of the land of Egypt!'" [The LORD to Moses]

Col. 4:2
Devote yourselves to prayer, keeping alert in it with thanksgiving.

Matt. 5:8
"Blessed are the pure in heart, for they will see God. …”  [Jesus to the crowds on the mountain]

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