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.

How Many Loaves Do You Have?--Jan. 31, 2017


The refugees are despoiled; they groan;
rise up, Lord God, put them in
the safety for which they long.
Your people, long ago, went down to Egypt
and were oppressed as aliens.
You call us to welcome aliens,
not to scorn or despise them.
We ask, how can we feed so many people?
Christ asks, how many loaves
do you have?

Lectionary Readings
Ps. 12; 146; 36; 7
Isa. 52:1-12
Gal. 4:12-20
Mark 8:1-10

Selected Verses
Ps. 12:5
“Because the poor are despoiled, because the needy groan,
          I will now rise up,” says the LORD;
          “I will place them in the safety for which they long.” 

Isa. 52:4
For thus says the Lord GOD: Long ago, my people went down into Egypt to reside there as aliens; the Assyrian, too, has oppressed them without cause.

Gal. 4:14
…though my condition put you to the test, you did not scorn or despise me, but welcomed me as an angel of God, as Christ Jesus. 

Mark 8:4-5
[Jesus'] disciples replied, "How can one feed these people with bread here in the desert?"  He asked them, "How many loaves do you have?" They said, "Seven."

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