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.

Did Jesus Fail a Market Study?--Feb. 10, 2017

Lord, you seem not to have studied marketing;
your target audience, for example, looks
to be a bunch of losers--broken spirits,
broken and contrite hearts, captives,
prisoners--altogether, a sorry crew.
Besides, what an unattractive pitch--
 greatness is only through servanthood,
and for a bonus they get to be persecuted?
That kind of marketing program could get you

Lectionary Readings
Ps. 51; 148; 142; 65
Isa. 61:1-9
2 Tim. 3:1-17
Mark 10:32-45

Selected Verses
Ps. 51:17
The sacrifice acceptable to God is a broken spirit;
          a broken and contrite heart, O God, you will not despise.

Isa. 61:1
 The spirit of the Lord GOD is upon me,
          because the LORD has anointed me;
he has sent me to bring good news to the oppressed,
          to bind up the brokenhearted,
to proclaim liberty to the captives,
          and release to the prisoners…

2 Tim. 3:12
Indeed, all who want to live a godly life in Christ Jesus will be persecuted. 

Mark 10:42-43
So Jesus called [his disciples] and said to them, “You know that among the Gentiles those whom they recognize as their rulers lord it over them, and their great ones are tyrants over them.  But it is not so among you; but whoever wishes to become great among you must be your servant…" 

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