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.

When We Try to Speak Your Word--June 29, 2016

[From July 4, 2012 archive]

We must take great care what we say
when we try to speak your word.
Though we mean to do good,
evil lies close at hand;
deeds of iniquity
overwhelm us.

Forgive our
and help us produce
the fruits of the kingdom.

Lectionary Readings
Ps. 65; 147:1-11; 125; 91
Numb. 22:41-23:12
Rom. 7:13-25
Matt. 21:33-46

Selected Verses
Ps. 65:3
When deeds of iniquity overwhelm us,
          you forgive our transgressions.

Numb. 23:12
[Balaam] answered [Balak], "Must I not take care to say what the LORD puts into my mouth?"

Rom. 7:21
So I find it to be a law that when I want to do what is good, evil lies close at hand.

Matt. 21:43
"…Therefore I tell you, the kingdom of God will be taken away from you and given to a people that produces the fruits of the kingdom.  …"  [Jesus to the chief priests and Pharisees]

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