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.

Before the Night Comes, when No One Can Work--Sept. 1, 2016

Sometimes when we are brought low, O God--
when are spirit is broken and we have lost all hope--
it is in such times that we experience your saving grace.
That said, we may also find you through worship,
when we experience a call to do your work.
If so, while it is day, may we work
the works you send us to do,
before the night comes,
when no one can work.

Lectionary Readings
Ps. 116; 147:12-20; 26; 130
Job 16:16-22, 17:1, 17:13-16
Acts 13:1-12
John 9:1-17
Selected Verses
Ps. 116:6
The LORD protects the simple;
          when I was brought low, he saved me. 

Job 17:1, 16
"My spirit is broken, my days are extinct, the grave is ready for me.  …where then is my hope?  Who will see my hope?  Will it go down to the bars of Sheol?  Shall we descend together into the dust?" [Job to Eliphaz and the other friends]

Acts 13:1-2
Now in the church at Antioch there were prophets and teachers: Barnabas, Simeon who was called Niger, Lucius of Cyrene, Manaen a member of the court of Herod the ruler, and Saul.  While they were worshiping the Lord and fasting, the Holy Spirit said, "Set apart for me Barnabas and Saul for the work to which I have called them."

John 9:4
"…We must work the works of him who sent me while it is day; night is coming when no one can work.  …"  [Jesus to his disciples]

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