July 2021 Daily Prayer


Bring Joy to your day and Read all the messages sent by Marisha and beautiful prayers that will

fill your day with the most precious gift, free to all, the word of God.

New: Rev'd John Poole will put out something on Fridays, and provide us with some ‘tasters’ for the coming Sunday

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Reading & Prayer 31st July 2021

Message from Marisha

Today's reading is part of one of the psalms of David, full of praise for the Lord. One of the lines says 'One generation shall laud your works to another, and shall declare your mighty acts' That is a very important statement. We are charged to pass on what we know to each generation and when you think of it that is why we are here at this point today. Someone told us about the Lord; maybe our parents or Sunday school. The history of the church is well known, both for failures and triumphs, never the less the essential truths have been handed down from one generation to another. Our own testimonies are a powerful tool for spreading the gospel. When the world sees changed lives, Christians thinking beyond their own interests and with the power of the Holy Spirit behind that, eyes will be opened and the truth revealed, it will surely change the world, person by person until all will come to know the love and goodness of God


Reading & Prayer 30th July 2021

John's study - a little preview of Sunday

There are several important issues concerning our life of faith in this Sunday’s readings (Ninth Sunday after Trinity).  We are prompted to consider what our faith in God really means.  Why are we looking for God, and for Jesus who shows us what God is like?  Is it merely for the things we hope he may give us – health, wealth, happiness (whatever that means)?  We all need to service our physical needs; we all need our share of material supports.  But what about our spiritual needs and growth?  Do we look diligently for Jesus for himself, for what he means for our lives?  It is he who makes our life meaningful and teaches us how we can keep growing as his brothers and sisters.  And he also asks us to learn from him to give of ourselves to others, to become each other’s ‘food and drink’ to enable them to live and thrive.


Reading & Prayer 29th July 2021

Message from Marisha

The bible is full of analogies of sheep and shepherds, isn't it? That would have been very pertinent to the people of Israel; sheep and shepherding would be in their blood, their livelihoods depended on keeping their sheep safe from predators.  In the verses preceding our scripture today condemnation was certainly poured on the heads of leaders of the people (their sheep) who they hadn't looked after, fed and kept safe. Now we have the Lord promising that He would seek out those who were lost and scattered and He would be their Shepherd. 

Leaders and shepherds of the flock; Bishops, priests, and ministers are still today, appointed by the Lord and that position holds a great responsibility. They are still human and have their shortcomings and failures and need our prayers; it is a privilege and a duty to pray for them that they may be worthy leaders of God's flock. 

We will always have the Lord, the Good Shepherd though, looking after us all.  He seeks and finds all and brings us back to safety however far we have strayed, whatever mess we have got ourselves into, however injured we have become.  The fold is a safe place to be but it can be an easy place to leave......little by little we can eat our way into another field, thinking that the grass is greener there, no restrictions about what you do, think as you please and use the world's standards for living.  In the Good Shepherd's fold, we have direction, the good food of the Word and all we need that is good for us. Keeping in the middle of that fold is the best place to be; the edges can be places of temptation where the field of the world beckons.  Keep safe everyone.


Reading & Prayer 28th July 2021

Message from Marisha

In the passage for today from Isaiah we are reminded that God is above any understanding and knowledge we have, his ways are beyond ours. God's word brings life. Right at the beginning in Genesis He spoke out and the heavens and the earth were created; his word had power and still does today. Whilst we cannot create as he did when we speak his Word, it is filled with his power and will achieve what He wants from it. It maybe that we have spoken to people who have not heard the Gospel and may even seem that it hasn't been heard but that is not so. God says his Word will never return void but will attain its purposes. We may not ever see the results. It takes both rain, sun and nutriments to grow crops; some will be putting in the seed, some may be watering, some may be making sure the seed is given all that it needs to grow.  Each one of us in some small way can be a part of the bringing to fruition God's plan. We work in tandem with the Holy Spirit; he directs, we do and then leave the rest to the Lord.


Reading & Prayer 27th July 2021

Message from Marisha

I was posed a question recently.' What have you most missed during the last 18 months ?  'Immediately came to mind was that by and large we haven't been able to meet together as previously.

What difference has that made? I can only speak for myself but I have missed the normal meeting together both in church and socially. That alone has tried my endurance and even though we have kept up contact it hasn't quite been the same. 

Our scripture today tells us to 'not fail to meet together and to encourage each other in love and good deeds. The meeting together in worship is important to our spiritual growth, inspiring each other, sharing our difficulties and finding ways to help others which always gives something back to us. The last months have been not in our control and for good reason many things have been curtailed. 

I pray that the situation changes for us all very quickly. That particular scripture was written with good reason. Some were becoming slack in their meeting together. Years ago, I was told an analogy of being a Christian and meeting together...........it is like a fire, many coals burning together burns brightly, one coal left on its own soon dims and goes out. We must do our best to keep up fellowship with each other in whatever way is safe and possible but praying too that it won't be too long until we are all back together in person.


Reading & Prayer 26th July 2021

Message from Marisha

I heard this week of someone, a long-standing church goer who had a spiritual revelation, a new birth, a renewal, born again. That is wonderful and really it doesn't matter what we choose to call it, God has revealed himself in a new way to that person. 

Some of us will remember clearly the day the Jesus made himself known to us and we gladly chose to follow him, to some it will have been a gradual awaking to Him. We are all loved uniquely and for each of us we will have been drawn to him in a different way. 

Of course, the first awaking, the first experience of knowing Jesus is very special but it doesn't stop there. 

Been in the church 50 years. 

Done great works in His name. 

Have a church title. 

All good and fine but he still wants to renew us each day by His spirit; open our eyes to all that He has to offer, see ourselves more clearly and be willing to be changed. Becoming a Christian means a life time of learning, being aware of his will for our lives and being obedient to Him, who always wants the very best for us


Reading & Prayer 24th July 2021

Message from Marisha

Today's scripture from Jeremiah contains a wonderful promise. We have our maker telling us that he has plans for our lives and we will come to no harm. That gives us security. Whilst we might not actually know all the details of what God has planned for us, we can trust him to have the very best in store for each one of us. Sometimes the knowing of God seems a little out of reach but here we have his promise that if we pray, he will hear us and reveal himself to us.

Life is never a straight path, though we often wish it were; it has its twists and turns and we don't quite know what is in store for us. The closer we grow to God and allow our ears to be atuned to his voice the more we will be aligned to his plan for us. Even if we sometimes stray and not get it right he will gently lead us back to where he wants us to be. We will learn lessons from even those times when we go a little wrong. All thigs do work together for good for those who love God and are called according to his promise.


Reading & Prayer 23rd July 2021

John's study - a little preview of Sunday

In our Gospel journey through Mark, we have now reached the story of Jesus feeding a multitude with just five loaves and a couple of fish.  But rather than deal with it in one sitting, our lectionary compilers have given us four Sundays to cover this hugely significant event!  In order to do this, they give us an excursion into the Gospel of John who gives a deeper, and much longer reflection on the meaning of this story.  For John, the feeding of the five thousand at Passover time deliberately foreshadows the Last Supper.  In fact, this is his version of the institution of the Eucharist.  He makes no mention of the breaking of bread and giving of wine ceremony in the Upper Room on the night before Jesus’ crucifixion.  Instead, he focuses on what that event will mean for his disciples: to ‘break the bread of their own lives’ in self-giving service to God and to people, as symbolised in the washing of feet ceremony.


Reading & Prayer 22nd July 2021

Message from Marisha

It is said that no one can be persuaded into changing their minds about most things. Certainly, one can never argue a person into changing their minds. As far as explaining our faith goes, it is our duty when called upon, to give a good testimony of what we believe and how Jesus has changed our lives. We can pray that they will be receptive to hearing us but, in the end, it is down to the Lord to open peoples' eyes, ears and hearts. How people become Christians is a work of the Holy Spirit; we could be the finest orator in the world but still not convince anyone of our beliefs. That is a great relief really, not that it lets us off the hook in being willing and ready to speak up but the work on a person's heart is not down to us. There is a time which is right for every living soul to be convinced and the Lord knows when that is. Not all will take up the offer, that too is not our responsibility.  Having heard many people's testimony I realise that the Lord often works though lots of different Christians until the day when the hearer actually opens their heart to Him who saves and redeems.

A sacred duty for us all, is to pray for those who still do not know or love the Lord. 


Reading & Prayer 21st July 2021

Message from Marisha

So often we find ourselves troubled; by thoughts, fears and worries and yet the Lord very clearly says 'don't let your hearts be troubled'.

It is easy to feel overcome by all that life sends us at times but if we are to hold on to the peace which is promised to us we need to take action against the very things that disturb that peace. We need to guard our hearts by paying attention to what we think......as a man thinks so he becomes. When worries beset us, change the thoughts, focus on all that is good and well and put aside all that we cannot do anything about anyway, whether we worry or not. God's peace is something quite different to the world's idea of peace. His peace allows us to enjoy our lives even when we have problems. We know that we have a Father caring for us who wants us to live happy and victorious lives; it is by His power that situations change not by any will power of our own. His solutions are always best. Our lives can only become what we allow God to make of them. His peace is promised; let us hold on to that.


Reading & Prayer 20th July 2021

Message from Marisha

Do you know God never stops working? 

Sometimes it feels that God is far away and remote from us but that is very far from the truth. Whether we 'feel' his presence or not He is with us and transforming us into all that he wants us to be. Sometimes he uses our trials and tribulations to teach us and mould us but not always. Sometimes he reveals himself through blessing us which helps us to see all that we can be grateful for. 

It seems the longer one goes on in the Christian life the more there is to know about the Lord......we certainly will never be bored!

The only thing that is required from us is a willing and open heart; He will do the rest. He will show us gently those areas in our lives that we need to abandon, as they are not helpful in our Christian walk. He will encourage us in every tiny step we take in following Him; our faith will grow. 

Whilst we will never know everything that the Lord is in this life, one day we will, all will be revealed........ 


Reading & Prayer 19th July 2021

Message from Marisha

Greetings from a very hot Tenerife. Generally, we love the warmth of living here but of course when it becomes very hot it is a case of enduring until the temperature moderates. Our scripture today is about endurance.

I think it is fair to say that many of us struggle to count our troubles as joy, but that is what it says. It also says that endurance produces faith and makes us mature. Maturity in life and in faith usually is grown over time and I do believe that adversity makes us stronger, even though we may not enjoy the process. There are those among us who are very mature; is it that they have taken the Lord at his word and asked for wisdom? I suspect that is so. We can all be in that position. Wisdom is not doled out sparingly. The Lord wants us to be mature in the faith and gives generously to those who ask for his wisdom in our lives.


Reading & Prayer 17th July 2021

Message from Marisha

This morning's scripture is a portion of a psalm of David, written in a time of trouble for him. It made stop to think about my own prayers. How quick am I to go to the Lord with my problems? Do I leave it till matters are dire? Yes, the truth is that I often try to work things out for myself before putting the matter to Him who can actually solve the problem. 

How sad the Lord must be when we don't tell him everything. He knows anyway but he does actually want to engage with us. We speak, he hears. He speaks, we hear. As the hymn says 'what needless pain we bear all because we do not carry everything to God in prayer '

Of course, prayer isn't just about problems, it's about praise and thankfulness and just being in His presence. Today I was with someone whose prayer life is very precious and organised too. It reminded me of being at Synod with Rev. Debbie from Barcelona who gave a wonderful presentation of how to deepen our prayer life. She too was an organised pray-er . She set her watch to go off at regular intervals so that for a few minutes she put herself into the presence of God. We can learn a lot from each other's experience of prayer and walking with the Lord.


Reading & Prayer 16th July 2021

John's study - a little preview of Sunday

The theme of our worship this coming Sunday (Seventh Sunday after Trinity) provides the inspiration for all Christian life and ministry.  It is how we are called to be one people in Christ, with a spirit of care, compassion and inclusion.  The message is simple, but the reality is often more complicated.  It calls much of the world to a radical (rooted in God) refocusing of life following the pattern set by Jesus......


Reading & Prayer 15th July 2021

Message from Marisha

Another new day arrives.

All of us, absolutely all of us are called into Christ's service. It may not be with designated position, a label attached but for each of us we have our allotted tasks. Maybe it is to pray or maybe to be a helping hand to someone. It is at this point we need to be open to God's direction. He gives discernment to those who ask. Sometimes we do things which are not meant for us, maybe that was work the Lord assigned to someone else. Often, we carry burdens that are too heavy. That is not the way the Lord wants it to be. He says his burdens are light. So, what actually is happening? Is it that we don't know what the Lord requires of us .....have we asked?. Do you let others get on with work without thinking you could help?

Have a look at today's picture and see what it says to you.

Each day we have choices.  Sometimes that is an easy thing; we want to do something and we just do it, simple. How much more joy we will have though when it is in our Father's will.


Reading & Prayer 14th July 2021

Message from Marisha

The world is a strange place at the moment and maybe it always has been. Life is changing and there is certainly seems to be a lot of worry, concern and even fear that was not noticeable at one time. For those of us that live in the West, life has been pretty comfortable. By and large we don't go hungry and our lives are fairly secure. In other parts of the world, they have faced much more difficult times with constant poverty, wars and fear. How have Christians around the world and in times gone by coped with their daily circumstances?

Our scripture this morning can give us an indication of the attitude we can take in whatever circumstances befall us. Our situation may not change; there will still be hunger, uncertainty, worry, bad treatment from others, all sorts of things which could cause us to be very afraid. However, we can have confidence in God's protection and that nothing at all can take away the love of God in Christ Jesus.  Our part is to trust him, knowing that He is right with us whatever is happening.


Reading & Prayer 13th July 2021

Message from Marisha

Tenerife is a great place for rainbows especially during the winter time. They always remind me of the promise described in today's verses. How often we make promises, even if it is just to ourselves that we will do this or that and then promptly forget about it or just can't fulfil them.  Don't you think it is just amazing that God always keeps his promises? It is always good to know what is promised to us; the scriptures are full of them. Commit some of them to memory so that we can be reassured when times get difficult. A special promise for me is 'all things work together for good to those who love God and are called according to his purposes. 

Sometimes it is a case of waiting on God's timing to see them come to pass but without fail they will. 

His great promise of giving us a covenant of peace which will not ever be removed, cannot help but give us reassurance of His close presence in our lives. We live in a world that has little peace but we can still know the peace of God in our hearts


Reading & Prayer 12th July 2021

Message from Marisha

Have you heard of the phrase ' he's a self-made man'? I have heard it said often and always in a very proud way; a person has made it, been successful in life by their own efforts. I wonder if it is thought that will be the ticket of admission into God's Kingdom.

Actually, that is the complete opposite of our understanding of this morning's scripture from Ephesians. We are told that it is nothing we have done that that has saved us, no work by our own hands, no effort on our part but only by Grace have we been saved. How we are viewed by the world's standard of success will have no bearing on our position with God. He gives us a seed of faith to believe, he forgives all that is past and wants us to grow in faith and love, doing all that he sets before us to do, not in our strength or effort but His.


Reading & Prayer 10th July 2021

Message from Marisha

I have probably spoken about today's psalm previously as it is a favourite of mine.

Life for us all has been uncertain over the last year or more and sadly we have had to say goodbye, for the time being to friends who have gone before us, to be with the Lord. This time has not been easy for many but our psalm is a great comfort; we are promised God's protection over our lives. We are reminded that our help comes from Him who made us and loves us and that our days are numbered by him not by any outside forces. Whilst we are not immune to life's problems, we can still be secure in the knowledge that He is watching over us.


9th July 2021 Trinity 6 reflections

From Rev'd John Poole

Good morning everyone,

It is difficult to draw ‘good news’ out of this Sunday’s (Sixth after Trinity) Gospel reading about the execution of John the Baptist.  Like the Passion of Jesus, it presents us with the consequences of speaking the truth to power. It is a further reminder that in the world of the New Testament, violence by the imperial power and its collaborators was a normal part of life.   


Reading & Prayer 3rd July 2021

Message from Marisha

In our reading today we are reminded who it is who keeps us us safe and who to go to in times when we feel surrounded by trouble. Of course, we know that the Lord God is always present in our lives, but sadly we sometimes become unaware of him when all is going well.  He wants to be in our lives through all kind of times not just the hard ones. I think it is a good practice when we first wake to say thank you for all we have and ask him to be with us throughout the day. 


Reading & Prayer 2nd July 2021

John's study - a little preview of Sunday

Our readings for this Sunday (Fifth after Trinity) are certainly rich in inspiration and encouragement for the work of Christian mission.  If there is a single theme that unites them it is:  in your human weakness know that if you put your trust in Lord, you will be strong and have sufficient resources for the task.  You have been given much by God so now you must also give of yourself for God, and not be put off by the obstacles that will inevitably accompany your journey...........


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 Reading & Prayer 31st July 2021

I will extol you, my God and King, and bless your name forever and ever.

Every day I will bless you, and praise your name forever and ever.

Great is the Lord, and greatly to be praised; his greatness is unsearchable.

One generation shall laud your works to another, and shall declare your mighty acts.

On the glorious splendour of your majesty, and on your wondrous works, I will meditate.

The might of your awesome deeds shall be proclaimed, and I will declare your greatness. They shall celebrate the fame of your abundant goodness, and shall sing aloud of your righteousness.

The Lord is gracious and merciful, slow to anger and abounding in steadfast love.

The Lord is good to all, and his compassion is over all that he has made.

Psalm 145 :1-9

Mighty God, let we never forget your great mercies and goodness towards us. We give you praise and thanks that our riches, in you, are beyond compare and without you we have nothing. May we, with hearts and hands and voices, be loud in our praise and the telling of the Gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ, so the whole world will know of your love and eternal plan for each person and all of creation. Amen

30th July 2021

There are several important issues concerning our life of faith in this Sunday’s readings (Ninth Sunday after Trinity).  We are prompted to consider what our faith in God really means.  Why are we looking for God, and for Jesus who shows us what God is like?  Is it merely for the things we hope he may give us – health, wealth, happiness (whatever that means)?  We all need to service our physical needs; we all need our share of material supports.  But what about our spiritual needs and growth?  Do we look diligently for Jesus for himself, for what he means for our lives?  It is he who makes our life meaningful and teaches us how we can keep growing as his brothers and sisters.  And he also asks us to learn from him to give of ourselves to others, to become each other’s ‘food and drink’ to enable them to live and thrive.

Exodus 16: 2 – 4 & 9 – 15

The story of God feeding the ancient Israelites in the wilderness with manna, or bread from heaven, is referred to several times in the New Testament, and has special focus in today’s Gospel reading.  Naturally, in the Gospel as elsewhere the physical bread is seen as a symbol or precursor of the true bread from heaven, the spiritual bread in the person of Jesus himself.  However, we should not overlook the provision of physical food as an important part of God’s concern and involvement with humanity.  That was also a huge part of the meaning of the feeding of the multitude by Jesus which we read last Sunday.  The provision of manna is a justice issue.  Under the leadership of Moses, God has just liberated the Israelites from slavery in Egypt.  Ensuring that they have sufficient food for their long journey and sojourn in the wilderness would ensure their survival and would (or should) also make it clear that God loved them.  Our life in Christ calls us to share and express God’s love for the world.  It must always include compassion for those who hunger, whether for food or other physical needs, and a longing that all should have enough resources for life to be lived rather than suffered or endured.

Ephesians 4: 1 - 16

How the new life in Christ will be lived out is the focus of our second reading.  It is about our Christian formation not just as individuals but as part of the Body of Christ, the Church.  The gifts and graces that Christ gives to each one of us are to help shape our Christian community life, and our individual relationships with our brothers and sisters in Christ.  So we are urged to live lives that are worthy of our calling.  We are to bear with one another in love; we are to maintain the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace.  We are to speak the truth in love.  All this leads to maturity in our life of faith.  We are to grow up in every way into him who is the head, into Christ himself.

John 6: 24 – 35

We continue reading from the ‘bread of life’ discourse in John 6.   Jesus has just fed more than 5,000 hungry people, initially with a very limited supply of food.  The people were very happy about that.  But they wanted more.  Their faith was clearly distorted.  They searched for Jesus because he had satisfied their material needs.  Jesus tells it to them straight, ‘Do not work for the food that perishes, but for the food that endures for eternal life, which the Son of Man will give you.’ 

The people that Jesus fed now demand another sign so that they will believe.  Yet they have already seen and still do not believe!  Are we tempted to look for ‘proofs’ when the presence and power of God is daily right in front our eyes and within ourselves?

As we considered last week, the story of the feeding of the multitude and the discourse which follows about Jesus as the Bread of Life, is John’s reflection on the meaning of Eucharist, the Christian Passover.   St Augustine observed that when we eat earthly food, it is absorbed into our earthly bodies.  In contrast, when we receive the Eucharist, we are drawn into Christ’s body.  Through this sacrament, we live in him, and he lives in us. 

The Eucharist, then, is the guarantee of the presence of the risen Lord.  And our frequent participation in it is our practical acceptance of this reality and it is the most important expression of our faith in Jesus.  Faith means not just a belief in the mind but in a heart that inspires practical engagement with the gospel.  This is the way we ‘get a life’ as Christians, true life because Jesus is in it.  Like material bread when we are hungry, it is up to us to receive the spiritual bread of the life of Jesus himself, and wholeheartedly continue an amazing adventure to discover where life lived in him will lead us.

A prayer for the day:

Our living and loving God, we hunger for lasting life and happiness and the fulfilment of all our hopes.  Give us the courage and faith to know that all our hungers are satisfied through your Son Jesus Christ who is our bread of life.  And when he has filled us with himself, may he lead and strengthen us to bring to a waiting world the food of reconciliation, justice, peace, joy, and love which you alone can give to the full.  We ask this in his name, Jesus Christ our Lord.  Amen 

 Reading & Prayer 29th July 2021

My sheep were scattered, they wandered over all the mountains and on every high hill; my sheep were scattered over all the face of the earth, with no one to search or seek for them. For thus says the Lord God: I myself will search for my sheep, and will seek them out. As shepherds seek out their flocks when they are among their scattered sheep, so I will seek out my sheep. I will rescue them from all the places to which they have been scattered on a day of clouds and thick darkness. I will bring them out from the peoples and gather them from the countries, and will bring them into their own land; and I will feed them on the mountains of Israel, by the watercourses, and in all the inhabited parts of the land. I will feed them with good pasture, and the mountain heights of Israel shall be their pasture; there they shall lie down in good grazing land, and they shall feed on rich pasture on the mountains of Israel. I myself will be the shepherd of my sheep, and I will make them lie down, says the Lord God. I will seek the lost, and I will bring back the strayed, and I will bind up the injured, and I will strengthen the weak, but the fat and the strong I will destroy. I will feed them with justice.

Ezekiel 34:6.11-16

Lord God , we are the sheep of your pasture. We give you thanks that you found and rescued us when we were lost and had no hope. Keep us safely in your fold, that might not stray from your protection. May we eat and drink and be filled us with all that is good which comes from you, that we might grow into worthy followers of you, the Good Shepherd. Amen

 Reading & Prayer 28th July 2021

My thoughts are not your thoughts, nor are your ways my ways, says the Lord.

For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts.

For as the rain and the snow come down from heaven, and do not return there until they have watered the earth, making it bring forth and sprout, giving seed to the sower and bread to the eater, so shall my word be that goes out from my mouth; it shall not return to me empty, but it shall accomplish that which I purpose, and succeed in the thing for which I sent it. For you shall go out in joy, and be led back in peace; the mountains and the hills before you shall burst into song, and all the trees of the field shall clap their hands. Instead of the thorn shall come up the cypress; instead of the brier shall come up the myrtle; and it shall be to the Lord for a memorial, for an everlasting sign that shall not be cut off.

Isaiah 55:8-13

Lord God, maker of the heavens and the earth and all that is in it, we praise your Holy name. Your words are a delight to our ears and food for our soul. We thank you that your goodness is spread through out the world and we your children can know the love, joy and peace that it brings. Lord, we desire to know and understand your Word to us; open our ears may hear, our hearts that we may understand and our lips that we might tell of your gospel of love. Amen 

 Reading & Prayer 27th July 2021

Let‌ ‌us‌ ‌hold‌ ‌fast‌ ‌to‌ ‌the‌ ‌confession‌ ‌of‌ ‌our‌ ‌hope‌ ‌without‌ ‌wavering,‌ ‌for‌ ‌he‌ ‌who‌ ‌has‌ ‌promised‌ ‌is‌ ‌faithful.‌ ‌And‌ ‌let‌ ‌us‌ ‌consider‌ ‌how‌ ‌to‌ ‌provoke‌ ‌one‌ ‌another‌ ‌to‌ ‌love‌ ‌and‌ ‌good‌ ‌deeds,‌ ‌not‌ ‌neglecting‌ ‌to‌ ‌meet‌ ‌together,‌ ‌as‌ ‌is‌ ‌the‌ ‌habit‌ ‌of‌ ‌some,‌ ‌but‌ ‌encouraging‌ ‌one‌ ‌another,‌ ‌and‌ ‌all‌ ‌the‌ ‌more‌ ‌as‌ ‌you‌ ‌see‌ ‌the‌ ‌Day‌ ‌approaching.‌ 

Hebrews 10:23-26

Father Almighty, our hope is fixed on you who gave us life. We give thanks with our whole hearts, that a way was made for us to be reconciled with you, now and forever through our Lord Jesus Christ. Keep us close to you and each other as we live our lives with faith in you. We pray for all who over the last months have been prevented from worshipping together. May the day soon come, that once again we can all meet together in fellowship and love. Amen

 Reading & Prayer 26th July 2021

A new heart I will give you, and a new spirit I will put within you; and I will remove from your body the heart of stone and give you a heart of flesh. I will put my spirit within you

Ezekiel 36:26-27a

Father God, we give thanks for your enduring love for us. Though we have been blinded with our own understanding of life; you pursue us in love, until our eyes are open to all that you want to give us and fulfil in us. May your Holy Spirit break down every barrier that prevents us from receiving the new heart you have promised. Let all the circumstances of our life with and in you, mould us evermore, into the likeness of Jesus our Saviour. Amen 

 Reading & Prayer 24th July 2021

"I know the plans I have for you", says the Lord, "plans for your welfare and not for harm, to give you a future with hope. Then when you call upon me and come and pray to me, I will hear you. When you search for me, you will find me; if you seek me with all your heart, I will let you find me," says the Lord

Jeremiah 29:11-14a

Father God, our hope and joy is in you. We are in your hands and trust your loving purposes for our lives. Teach us how to pray that we may grow closer to you each day, know more of you, and hear you when you direct us in our daily living. Keep us, O Lord on the straight path, glorifying you in all our words and actions. Amen

23rd July 2021

In our Gospel journey through Mark, we have now reached the story of Jesus feeding a multitude with just five loaves and a couple of fish. But rather than deal with it in one sitting, our lectionary compilers have given us four Sundays to cover this hugely significant event! In order to do this, they give us an excursion into the Gospel of John who gives a deeper, and much longer reflection on the meaning of this story. For John, the feeding of the five thousand at Passover time deliberately foreshadows the Last Supper. In fact, this is his version of the institution of the Eucharist. He makes no mention of the breaking of bread and giving of wine ceremony in the Upper Room on the night before Jesus’ crucifixion. Instead, he focuses on what that event will mean for his disciples: to ‘break the bread of their own lives’ in self-giving service to God and to people, as symbolised in the washing of feet ceremony.

2 Kings 4: 42 – 44

In addition to the story of God feeding his ancient people with manna in the wilderness, we have another brief story here that no doubt provided inspiration for the Gospel feeding miracles. As in the Gospels where Jesus has compassion for a large number of hungry people, so here we find Elisha the prophet of Israel having compassion on the gathered company of prophets who were hungry because of famine in the land. Elisha orders his servant to feed them with the twenty available barley loaves in spite of the servant’s protest that there is not enough to go round. Elijah insists that God has promised that they will be fed and there will be food left over.

Ephesians 3: 14 – 21

The first part of this epistle ends with a prayer summing up what has already been covered in the text and anticipating the second part. The prayer alternates between extolling the greatness of God’s love and the life of the Christian within that love. God our creator has glorious riches with which to bless us, but the writer (Paul, or more likely a later disciple writing in his name) prays that God will strengthen the readers so that they will be rooted and grounded in the love of Christ. God’s power is beyond our imagining, yet it is always at work within us. This is true even for those who do not know it. The hope in this message is that the Church as God’s family will one day extend to the whole of humanity.

John 6: 1 – 15

The reference to it being Passover time is not simply an incidental note about the time of the year. It is stated to link it with the Last Supper, and, as mentioned above, this is John’s version of the institution of the Eucharist, making the important point that this liturgical activity is the Christian Passover centred in the person of Jesus himself. The feeding of the multitude is reported in all four Gospels, and each reflects the words and actions of Jesus breaking bread at the Last Supper (‘he took, he blessed, he broke, he gave’).

We cannot underestimate the social/political implications of the miracle whether we understand it as a factual event of a feeding of a multitude with very little food, or as a parable of the significance of Jesus himself as the bread who satisfies all our hungers. It contains a powerful message of justice, that God’s desire is for all people to be fed and not have to live with hunger. Those who have enough and more than enough are called to share with those who have little. We know that on a global scale it can be done. We just need the will, the energy, the commitment, and a reordering of priorities as nations and peoples to make it happen.

However, John’s version of today’s miracle provides a warning against greed, dependence or craving for bread (food, physical satisfaction) alone.  The crowd is preoccupied with Jesus’ material provision of bread, rather than the real or whole message that it seeks to communicate.  We read that they wanted to ‘make him king’ (not that it was in their power to do so!).  Jesus’ kingdom is not of this world (as he later says to Pilate).  So he withdraws from them.  The point of the miracle was to assure them of God’s loving concern for them and to encourage them (and us) to understand that the characteristics of God -  love, selflessness, self-giving service, generosity, grace, must be the characteristics of our life, in our relation to God, to each other and to the whole world.

A prayer for the day:

God our Father, you give your children everywhere all the good gifts for a fully human life.  We repent of the ways that we human beings often prevent those gifts from being received and enjoyed by all.  We pray that Jesus your Son will continue to give us the bread of his word that nourishes our faith and outlook, his peace that gives us rest and assurance, his consolation that gives us hope and joy, his nourishing bread of the Eucharist that sustains us on our journey to you and makes us into members of your family on earth.  May your generous gifts inspire and empower us to share the bread of our own lives with everyone as a token of the festal meal that you are preparing for us in your eternal kingdom.  We ask this in the name of him who is Bread of life for us all, your Son, Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen 

 Reading & Prayer 22nd July 2021

Jesus said to the disciples 'the reason I speak to the people in parables is that ‘seeing they do not perceive, and hearing they do not listen, nor do they understand.’ With them indeed is fulfilled the prophecy of Isaiah that says:

‘You will indeed listen, but never understand, and you will indeed look, but never perceive. For this people’s heart has grown dull, and their ears are hard of hearing, and they have shut their eyes; so that they might not look with their eyes, and listen with their ears, and understand with their heart and turn— and I would heal them.’

But blessed are your eyes, for they see, and your ears, for they hear. Truly I tell you, many prophets and righteous people longed to see what you see, but did not see it, and to hear what you hear, but did not hear it.'

Matthew 13:13-17

Almighty God, we praise and thank you that our eyes, ears and hearts have been opened to your love through our Lord Jesus Christ. We long to know more of you and your ways. Direct us and keep us, on the straight path in this life, that one day we may come before your throne, spotless and confident that we have been obedient and served you as we ought. Amen

 Reading & Prayer 21st July 2021

Do not let your hearts be troubled. Believe in God, believe also in me.                     

I have said these things to you while I am still with you. But the Advocate, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, will teach you everything, and remind you of all that I have said to you. Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled, and do not let them be afraid.

John 14:1,25-27

Father of all, your gift of peace is priceless to us. We are sorry that we so often shatter that peace by worry, anxiety and fear. May our hearts be guarded against all that is not of you, that we might live the new life we now have by belief in our Lord Jesus Christ. Let our lives be a true reflection of the love, joy and peace that has been gifted to us as your precious children. Amen 

 Reading & Prayer 20th July 2021

May you experience the love of Christ, though it is too great to understand fully. Then you will be made complete with all the fullness of life and power that comes from God.

Now all glory to God, who is able, through his mighty power at work within us, to accomplish infinitely more than we might ask or think. Glory to him in the church and in Christ Jesus through all generations forever and ever! Amen.

Ephesians 3 :19-21

Lord God, we give thanks for the love of Christ which saved and redeemed us. May our hearts be ever open to the Holy Spirit and willing to be changed and grow more like our Saviour each day. Take away, all that hinders us, from seeing you more clearly working in our lives and the world. Amen

 Reading & Prayer 19th July 2021

My brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of any kind, consider it nothing but joy, because you know that the testing of your faith produces endurance; and let endurance have its full effect, so that you may be mature and complete, lacking in nothing.

If any of you is lacking in wisdom, ask God, who gives to all generously and ungrudgingly, and it will be given you. But ask in faith, never doubting, for the one who doubts is like a wave of the sea, driven and tossed by the wind;

James 1 : 2-6

Almighty Father, we come to you in faith, trusting and believing your word. We give thanks that your Word brings life and in that we can rely. In our moments of doubts sustain us and cause us to remember your promises; stir up once again our faith and our joy in you. May we though our adversities learn to endure, become refined as pure gold and be a good witness to those who see and observe our lives in you. Amen 

 Reading & Prayer 17th July 2021

Incline your ear, O Lord, and answer me, for I am poor and needy.

Preserve my life, for I am devoted to you; save your servant who trusts in you.

You are my God; be gracious to me, O Lord, for to you do I cry all day long.

Gladden the soul of your servant, for to you, O Lord, I lift up my soul.

For you, O Lord, are good and forgiving,

abounding in steadfast love to all who call on you.

Give ear, O Lord, to my prayer; listen to my cry of supplication.

In the day of my trouble I call on you, for you will answer me.  

Psalm 86

Lord God, you are our maker and redeemer, 

Show us the way of faith, we pray

Show us the way of trust, we pray

Show us the way of forgiveness, we pray

Show us the way of living and walking in the spirit, we pray 

May our lives be hidden in you, that we may know the joy of our salvation all the days of our life. Amen

 Reading & Prayer 16th July 2021

The theme of our worship this coming Sunday (Seventh Sunday after Trinity) provides the inspiration for all Christian life and ministry. It is how we are called to be one people in Christ, with a spirit of care, compassion and inclusion. The message is simple, but the reality is often more complicated. It calls much of the world to a radical (rooted in God) refocusing of life following the pattern set by Jesus.

Jeremiah 23: 1 – 6

The historical context of the book of Jeremiah covers the period and events leading up to and following the siege and capture of Jerusalem by the Babylonians and the deportation of many of its inhabitants to years of exile in Babylon (597BC). Jeremiah himself is a symbol of the agonies of the loyal Israelites as opposed to those whose infidelity to God’s covenant with them had brought conquest and exile upon themselves.

The shepherds referred to at the beginning of today’s passage are the sinful kings of Judah whose behaviour has particularly led to the nation’s misfortune. But the overall message here is one of hope. God will redeem his people in the end. There will be a righteous king of the house of David who will be a true shepherd to the people, a people restored to their own land. It is not clear who Jeremiah is referring to. He appears to be repeating the hopes of his predecessors for the restoration of the Davidic monarchy which would be faithful to God’s covenant with his people, and which would restore its religious and moral obligations for the people. We can see how Christians came to see this as a prophecy of Jesus, for in him many saw the shepherding leadership that Israel had been lacking for centuries. He did not, of course, become ‘king of Israel,’ but hopefully, his kind of kingship and kingdom reigns in the hearts and lives of all who follow him, and by God’s grace will one day rule the world. 

Ephesians 2: 11 – 22

The writer explains how the cross of Christ has destroyed the division between Jew and Gentile and has created a new humanity which is different from both groups and is open to all. This is a huge message of hope and encouragement in a divided social and religious world, and it remains relevant today. Union with Christ means the end of all humanly created divisions. There are no longer foreigners or aliens within the Church, and no more social or ethnic barriers. We are a new creation in Christ, a dwelling place for God in the Spirit. 

Mark 6: 30 – 34 & 53 – 56

Today’s Gospel gives us two scenes from Jesus’ ministry which are sandwiched by the story of the feeding of the five thousand.  That episode and its impact will be covered over the next four Sundays in the more detailed and in-depth exploration from the Gospel of John.  Today we see something deep about Jesus – his attractive character, his immense compassion, and his power to heal people, all of which drew huge crowds to see him and to be ministered to by him.   Jesus has sympathy with them for they are ‘like sheep without a shepherd,’ rather like the leaderless people of Israel in Jeremiah’s time.  He appears as a true shepherd of the people, ministering to every need and touching every part of people’s lives.  We see in Jesus a huge ministry of welcome and acceptance, of inclusion and care. 

How well does the Church and its ministry, in which we all share, live and work according to the example of the Master?

Collect for the Seventh Sunday after Trinity:

Lord of all power and might, the author and giver of all good things:  graft in our hearts the love of your name, increase in us true religion, nourish us with all goodness, and of your great mercy keep us in the same; though Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen

 Reading & Prayer 15th July 2021

“Come to me, all you that are weary and are carrying heavy burdens, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn from me; for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.”

Matthew 11:28-30

Loving Father, we come willingly into your service in gratitude for all you are and for the new life you have given us in Jesus; show us we pray what tasks are ours to carry out and those which are not. Help us to be so closely yoked with you that there will be no burden too heavy to carry and that we will find our rest in you. Give us your discernment that we will only be working in union with your plans for us and your kingdom. Amen

 Reading & Prayer 14th July 2021

I am convinced that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor rulers, nor things present, nor things to come, nor powers, nor height, nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord

Romans 8:38-39

Lord and Father, in you we put our trust, for your love endures forever. Forgive us for our moments of doubt and uncertainty and send us your peace. By your Grace and by the power of the Holy Spirit may we live our lives confidently, assured of your presence and protection. Amen 

 Reading & Prayer 13th July 2021

This is like the days of Noah to me:

Just as I swore that the waters of Noah 

would never again go over the earth,

so I have sworn that I will not be angry with you

and will not rebuke you.

For the mountains may depart and the hills be removed,

but my steadfast love shall not depart from you,

and my covenant of peace shall not be removed,

says the Lord, who has compassion on you.

Isaiah 54:9-10

Lord God Almighty, great is your faithfulness to us, great is your loving compassion; we give you all thanks and praise. May your promises reside in our heart and cause us  to to have no fear for the future; for your promises are like pure gold and finer than any precious stone to us. Your loving presence with us today and always is more valuable than can be described. We praise your Holy name. Amen

 Reading & Prayer 12th July 2021

God, who is rich in mercy, out of the great love with which he loved us even when we were dead through our trespasses, made us alive together with Christ—by grace you have been saved—and raised us up with him and seated us with him in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus, so that in the ages to come he might show the immeasurable riches of his grace in kindness toward us in Christ Jesus. For by grace you have been saved through faith, and this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God—not the result of works, so that no one may boast. For we are what he has made us, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand to be our way of life.

Ephesians 2:4-10

Father God Almighty, we give you thanks and praise that you love us despite our weakness and failings. We thank you that you have redeemed us and that we now belong to you. Forgive us when we forget the immeasurable gift you have given us of eternal life. By Grace, may we walk as your children, ready and willing to hear your voice and obey your commands. Amen 

 Reading & Prayer 10th July 2021

I lift up my eyes to the hills—from where will my help come?

My help comes from the Lord, who made heaven and earth.

He will not let your foot be moved; he who keeps you will not slumber.

He who keeps Israel will neither slumber nor sleep.

The Lord is your keeper; the Lord is your shade at your right hand.

The sun shall not strike you by day, nor the moon by night.

The Lord will keep you from all evil; he will keep your life.

The Lord will keep your going out and your coming in

from this time on and for evermore.

Psalm 121

Father God, in our weakness, we look to you for strength as we walk through this life. We give you thanks that we are in your hands and we need not be anxious for this today or the tomorrows to come. May the days we have be filled with joy and thanksgiving for all that has been made possible for us through your love and protection. Give us Grace to walk in your ways and in your presence, that all we are and do may be pleasing to you. Amen

 Reading & Prayer xxxth January 2021

Amos 7: 12 – 15 Amos is the earliest of the prophets whose preaching and utterances are contained in book form (c. 750BC).  The original united kingdom of David and Solomon’s time is now divided into two separate kingdoms – Judah in the south and Israel in the north.  Amos is from the southern kingdom but has been called by God to go and prophesy in the north.Among several visions that Amos experiences, in today’s passage he sees the Lord standing beside a wall, with a plumb line in his hand.  (A builder would always check that a wall was vertical with a plumb line, and if it was not true he would destroy it).  The Lord has tested the ‘wall’ that is the people of Israel and has found them to be corrupt and untrue.  Therefore, he vows to destroy them and bring an end to their royal sanctuaries and dynasty.Amaziah, the guardian of the ‘state religion,’ tries to silence Amos, regardless of whether he considers Amos’ prophecy to be right.  He also complains that Amos has no right to prophesy in Israel, because he is demoralising the people.  In any case, he is an outsider, a southerner, so he should go home and prophesy there.  Amos protests that he is simply obeying God’s call to come to the centre of crisis, the spiritual front line.  God’s word is not always palatable and popular, sometimes it requires someone sent from far away to deliver it, and a good preacher or prophet needs a thick skin as well as a tender heart.

Ephesians 1: 3 – 14 Several, possibly six, of the thirteen letters attributed to Paul were probably not written by the apostle himself, and the style, theology and language of the letter to the Ephesians has prompted most mainstream scholars to conclude that this is one of those from a later ‘school of Paul’ writing in the apostle’s name.  Also, many early manuscripts omit the destination of this letter, so it widely thought to be a kind of baptismal manifesto written to everybody in general and to nobody in particular. Our passage today which follows the opening greeting is a single long sentence written in a typical Jewish style which prepares the writer to celebrate the reconciliation between Jews and Gentiles later in the letter (see 2: 11 – 22).  The verses represent a sweeping vision of the Church as God’s choice from the beginning and God’s intention that Christ’s people live holy and irreproachable lives.  The sacrificial death of Jesus is shown as all part of God’s plan leading to abundant grace being poured on God’s people.  This plan extends to the whole of creation being gathered into Christ.  Christians, living in this hope and sustained by the Holy Spirit who is the assurance of greater blessings to come, are called to praise God through their living, which has a divine and world-transforming purpose.  This is a wonderful message of hope and encouragement to a fragile Church living within a pagan and hostile culture and political environment. 

Mark 6: 14 – 29 This reading represents a dramatic interlude filling the gap between the sending out of the disciples on their mission (last Sunday’s reading) and their return.  It provides a catch up on the fate of John the Baptist whose arrest by Herod Antipas is recorded in the first chapter of Mark’s Gospel providing Jesus with a trigger to begin his own ministry.  The execution of John is certainly an historical event, but it is here set within a tawdry and shocking tale that was probably the stuff of village gossip.  It includes a royal divorce involving a king marrying his brother’s wife, a queen’s wrath, a king’s birthday banquet, a dancing girl, a rash royal promise, and the head of John the Baptist being delivered to the banquet on a platter.  Much of the narrative is likely to be Mark’s own creation inspired by Old Testament sources such as the wrath of wicked queen Jezebel who wanted the prophet Elijah slain (1 Kings 19), and Esther’s banquet to expose the evil intentions of Haman which results in his execution (Esther 7).  There are also resemblances to a well-known story in the Mediterranean world of a Roman official granting the wishes of his lover in having a prisoner beheaded at a banquet, an account recorded by the historians Cicero and Livy.

Herod Antipas was called a ‘king’ by custom but was only a vassal prince permitted by the Romans to rule over a third of the kingdom originally ruled over by his father, Herod the Great (died 4BC).  His proper title and role were tetrarch of Galilee and Perea.  According to the first century Jewish historian Josephus, Herod put John to death to stop his influence over the people leading to a rebellion.  Herod had a curious respect for John, and his fear at the beginning of this passage appears to be that Jesus is John raised from the dead. Mark clearly wishes to show certain parallels between the fate of John the Baptist and that of Jesus, especially how both were put to death at the insistence of others, how both deaths were ordered by reluctant and spineless authorities (Herod for John and Pilate for Jesus).  Jesus saw himself in some sense as continuing what John had begun.  John’s execution highlights the risk or danger of both the task and the message in speaking God’s truth, whether to secular and hostile power or corrupt religion.

Almighty God, you called your servant John the Baptist to be the forerunner of your Son in birth and death:  strengthen us by your grace that, as he suffered for the truth, so we may boldly resist corruption and vice and receive with him the unfading crown of glory; through Jesus Christ our Lord.  Amen.

Every blessing for Sunday and the week ahead, 

Love and prayers,


 Reading & Prayer 3rd July 2021

The Lord is my rock, my fortress, and my deliverer,

my God, my rock, in whom I take refuge,

my shield and the horn of my salvation,

my stronghold and my refuge,

my saviour; you save me from violence.

I call upon the Lord, who is worthy to be praised,

and I am saved from my enemies..

2 Samuel 22:2-4

Almighty Father, we praise you and remember your goodness to us. From the beginning you have had our lives in your hand and protected us. You are our firm foundation, the one in whom we can trust. Help us to keep our our eyes fixed on you when problems come ,all about us feels uncertain and our own doubts threaten to overwhelm us. Amen

2nd July 2021

Our readings for this Sunday (Fifth after Trinity) are certainly rich in inspiration and encouragement for the work of Christian mission. If there is a single theme that unites them it is: in your human weakness know that if you put your trust in Lord, you will be strong and have sufficient resources for the task. You have been given much by God so now you must also give of yourself for God, and not be put off by the obstacles that will inevitably accompany your journey.

Ezekiel 2: 1 – 5

Ezekiel is an unusual prophet, a priest and a visionary, called to a tough ministry in the darkest period of ancient Israel’s history. He was to be prophet to the newly exiled Israelites and was himself presumably among the first batch of exiles taken to Babylon in 597BC. Our short passage today is about the beginning of his call and commission. He is to speak in God’s name to a stubborn, heard-hearted people who are being punished because of their wilfully disobedient behaviour, their faithlessness, and their failure to live as God’s chosen people. This people had long been rebellious. They would now come to know that a prophet, a messenger of God, is among them, who will admonish them but show that God is in control of their destiny. Ezekiel will assure them that God has not abandoned them but will instil in them a new heart and spirit and ultimately restore them to their own land.

2 Corinthians 12: 2 – 10

Paul is also having to deal with troublesome people! Some of them have been questioning his authority and spiritual experiences. There are clearly some Corinthian Christians who are obsessed with spiritual gifts and ‘highs.’ By relating a special spiritual high of his own, Paul attempts to refocus his readers’ attitudes. To avoid any hint of boasting, he tells of his experience in the third person. Clearly, he is not referring to his dramatic conversion but to some more recent transcendent experience. He wishes to make no capital out of it and plays it down, as if to say to his readers, ‘Whatever spiritual grace God gives you, it is not a matter for boasting, but is to encourage you and help you build up others in the faith.’

Paul then goes on to speak about a ‘thorn in the flesh’ that he has been given by ‘a messenger of Satan’ to keep him humble. What he means is unclear, and all manner of afflictions have been suggested – epilepsy, bouts of malaria, stammering, struggles with his celibacy, and more. However, it could be a metaphor for hardships such as he relates in the previous chapter, or even having to deal with difficult people in the Church, such as at Corinth itself. ‘A thorn in the flesh’ does rather sound like ‘a pain in the neck’ (or wherever)!

Whatever this ‘thorn’ is, it reminds Paul of his weaknesses, which he discovers are a gift because they make him totally dependent on God’s grace, and the power of Christ within him, which through prayer he has found is sufficient for him and enables him to have the strength to put up with his sufferings and challenges in whatever form they take. Of his weaknesses he is happy to boast.

Here, we have a passage to help us put our own varied Christian experiences into perspective. Sometimes we are lifted up in joy by the experience of God’s presence and love. But deeper and more solid roots may be planted when our difficulties and sufferings make us more aware of our need of the grace of God. Such hardships lived through with humility and resilience produce a deeper witness of faith and can become useful tools to encourage and assist the growth of our fellow Christians.

Mark 6: 1 – 13

Jesus was already famous in Galilee. People were thronging to him in the villages and towns around the Sea of Galilee. His home base was Capernaum on the north west shore of the lake. But now he journeys a few miles west to Nazareth where he had been brought up. His reception there is rather different and rather shocks him. He faces rejection from the people who all knew him and his family, which he understands as the lot of a prophet.

The stress so far in the Gospel is that Jesus has been able to do works of power such as healing and deliverance because of the faith in him of the recipients or their sponsors. But in Nazareth Jesus can do no such work, although he does manage to heal a few sick people. It is a case of familiarity breeding, if not exactly contempt, then clearly a lack of expectation and respect.

In the following scene, Jesus sends out his disciples to do the sort of work he himself had been doing. They have been following Jesus and watching him as he works, now it is the time for them to go and represent him. He warns them that they too face the possibility of rejection from some people. Their poverty of resources and dependence on God are highlighted. This reflects Paul’s teaching about human weakness as the spiritual ‘base’ for being effective servants of God.  

Christian mission is all about representing Jesus in our own localities and communities and wherever we are in life. It requires no special skills or techniques, just the possession of an openness that will allow God to take the initiative.

A prayer for the day:

Gentle God of power and strength, you chose us, weak as we are, to put the mighty to shame and to stand up and speak up with our words and our lives for what is right and good.  Make us realize more deeply that without your help our human efforts cannot but fail and that our very weakness entitles us to your strength.  Be our courage and joy through him who was weak with the weak, but who revealed the strength and power that comes from you alone, Jesus Christ, your Son and our Lord. Amen