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.

Humbled or Exalted--Nov. 5, 2016

[From the Nov. 14, 2014 archive]

We exalt ourselves, long for our dainties and our splendor;
but they are gone from us, never to be found again—
we are humbled.

We humble ourselves, with our whole heart give you thanks
for your steadfast love and faithfulness; then, all unawares—
we are exalted.

You are in our midst, in you we are victorious;
you rejoice over us in gladness, renew us in your love;
we give you thanks and sing your praise.

Lectionary Readings
Ps. 104; 149; 138; 98
Zeph. 3:14-20
Rev. 18:1-14
Luke 14:1-11

Selected Verses
Psalm 138:1-2
I give you thanks, O LORD, with my whole heart;
            before the gods I sing your praise;
I bow down toward your holy temple
            and give thanks to your name for your steadfast love and your faithfulness;
            for you have exalted your name and your word
            above everything.

Zeph. 3:17-18a
The LORD your God, is in your midst,
            a warrior who gives victory;
he will rejoice over you with gladness,
            he will renew you in his love;
he will exult over you with loud singing
            as on a day of festival.

Rev. 18:14
“The fruit for which your soul longed
            has gone from you,
and all your dainties and your splendor
            are lost to you,
            never to be found again!”  [The angel to “Babylon”]

Luke 14:11
“…For all who exalt themselves will be humbled, and those who humble themselves will be exalted.”  [Jesus to the banquet guests]

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