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 Cry Out to God for Help--March 4, 2017

[From Feb. 12, 2005 archive]

Just when we think we are driven far from your sight
you hear our supplications and our cries for help. 
Just when we are amazed by your gracious acts,
you show us even greater wonders. 

Still, we find ourselves ensnared
by what is abhorrent to you. 
As we were once foolish and disobedient,
we shall be again unless you sustain us
when we cry to you for help.

Lectionary Readings
Ps. 43; 149; 31; 143
Deut. 7:17-26
Titus 3:1-15
John 1:43-51

Selected Verses
 I had said in my alarm,
          “I am driven far from your sight.”
But you heard my supplications
          when I cried out to you for help.

Deut. 7:25
The images of their gods you shall burn with fire.  Do not covet the silver or the gold that is on them and take it for yourself, because you could be ensnared by it; for it is abhorrent to the LORD your God.

Titus 3:1-3a
Remind them to be subject to rulers and authorities, to be obedient, to be ready for every good work, to speak evil of no one, to avoid quarreling, to be gentle, and to show every courtesy to everyone. For we ourselves were once foolish, disobedient…

John 1:50
Jesus answered [Nathanael], "Do you believe because I told you that I saw you under the fig tree?  You will see greater things than these."

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