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.

My Hand to the Plow--May 29, 2017

[From June 6, 2011 archive]

Jesus, I have put my hand to the plow.  If I look back,
may it be only to remember your abundant goodness

and to sing aloud of your righteousness, not to regret
the loss of things from which you have called me.

If I look forward, may it be only in eagerness to plow,
in assurance of the hope I have in you to the very end.

Lord Jesus, with cords of love bind me to your
work of plowing, to which you have called me.

Lectionary Readings
Ps. 97; 145; 124; 115
Ezek. 4:1-17
Heb. 6:1-12
Luke 9:51-62
           
Selected Verses
Ps. 145:7
They shall celebrate the fame of your abundant goodness,
          and shall sing aloud of your righteousness.

Ezek. 4:8
See, I am putting cords on you so that you cannot turn from one side to the other until you have completed the days of your siege.

Heb. 6:11
And we want each one of you to show the same diligence so as to realize the full assurance of hope to the very end…

Luke 9:62
Another said, "I will follow you, Lord; but let me first say farewell to those at my home."  Jesus said to him, "No one who puts a hand to the plow and looks back is fit for the kingdom of God."

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