OREMUS: 23 September 2009
steve.benner at oremus.org
Tue Sep 22 17:00:01 GMT 2009
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OREMUS for Wednesday, September 23, 2009
Lord, open our lips,
and our mouth shall proclaim your praise.
Blessed are you, God of miracles and of mercy,
all creation sings your praise,
for your grace is extravagant and unexpected.
You lead us to repentance
and the acceptance of your grace,
that we may witness to your love,
which embraces both those we call friend
and those we call stranger.
For these and all your mercies, we praise you:
Father, Son, and Holy Spirit:
Blessed be God for ever!
An opening canticle may be sung.
Truly, God is good to Israel,*
to those who are pure in heart.
But as for me, my feet had nearly slipped;*
I had almost tripped and fallen;
Because I envied the proud*
and saw the prosperity of the wicked:
For they suffer no pain,*
and their bodies are sleek and sound;
In the misfortunes of others they have no share;*
they are not afflicted as others are;
Therefore they wear their pride like a necklace*
and wrap their violence about them like a cloak.
Their iniquity comes from gross minds,*
and their hearts overflow with wicked thoughts.
They scoff and speak maliciously;*
out of their haughtiness they plan oppression.
They set their mouths against the heavens,*
and their evil speech runs through the world.
And so the people turn to them*
and find in them no fault.
They say, 'How should God know?*
is there knowledge in the Most High?'
So then, these are the wicked;*
always at ease, they increase their wealth.
In vain have I kept my heart clean,*
and washed my hands in innocence.
I have been afflicted all day long,*
and punished every morning.
Had I gone on speaking this way,*
I should have betrayed the generation of your children.
When I tried to understand these things,*
it was too hard for me;
Until I entered the sanctuary of God*
and discerned the end of the wicked.
Surely, you set them in slippery places;*
you cast them down in ruin.
O how suddenly do they come to destruction,*
come to an end and perish from terror!
Like a dream when one awakens, O Lord,*
when you arise you will make their image vanish.
When my mind became embittered,*
I was sorely wounded in my heart.
I was stupid and had no understanding;*
I was like a brute beast in your presence.
Yet I am always with you;*
you hold me by my right hand.
You will guide me by your counsel,*
and afterwards receive me with glory.
Whom have I in heaven but you?*
and having you I desire nothing upon earth.
Though my flesh and my heart should waste away,*
God is the strength of my heart and my portion for ever.
Truly, those who forsake you will perish;*
you destroy all who are unfaithful.
But it is good for me to be near God;*
I have made the Lord God my refuge.
I will speak of all your works*
in the gates of the city of Zion.
A Song of the Bride (Isaiah 61.10,11; 62.13)
I will greatly rejoice in the Lord,
my soul shall exult in my God;
Who has clothed me with the garments of salvation,
and has covered me with the cloak of integrity,
As a bridegroom decks himself with a garland,
and as a bride adorns herself with her jewels.
For as the earth puts forth her blossom,
and as seeds in the garden spring up,
So shall God make righteousness and praise
blossom before all the nations.
For Zion(s sake I will not keep silent,
and for Jerusalem(s sake I will not rest,
Until her deliverance shines out like the dawn,
and her salvation as a burning torch.
The nations shall see your deliverance,
and all rulers shall see your glory;
Then you shall be called by a new name
which the mouth of God will give.
You shall be a crown of glory in the hand of the Lord,
a royal diadem in the hand of your God.
Worship the Lord, O Jerusalem;*
praise your God, O Zion;
For he has strengthened the bars of your gates;*
he has blessed your children within you.
He has established peace on your borders;*
he satisfies you with the finest wheat.
He sends out his command to the earth,*
and his word runs very swiftly.
He gives snow like wool;*
he scatters hoarfrost like ashes.
He scatters his hail like bread crumbs;*
who can stand against his cold?
He sends forth his word and melts them;*
he blows with his wind and the waters flow.
He declares his word to Jacob,*
his statutes and his judgements to Israel.
He has not done so to any other nation;*
to them he has not revealed his judgements.
FIRST READING [Ecclesiasticus 37:6-15]:
Do not forget a friend during the battle,
and do not be unmindful of him when you distribute your spoils.
All counsellors praise the counsel they give,
but some give counsel in their own interest.
Be wary of a counsellor,
and learn first what is his interest,
for he will take thought for himself.
He may cast the lot against you
and tell you, Your way is good,
and then stand aside to see what happens to you.
Do not consult one who regards you with suspicion;
hide your intentions from those who are jealous of you.
Do not consult with a woman about her rival
or with a coward about war,
with a merchant about business
or with a buyer about selling,
with a miser about generosity
or with the merciless about kindness,
with an idler about any work
or with a seasonal labourer about completing his work,
with a lazy servant about a big task
pay no attention to any advice they give.
But associate with a godly person
whom you know to be a keeper of the commandments,
who is like-minded with yourself,
and who will grieve with you if you fail.
And heed the counsel of your own heart,
for no one is more faithful to you than it is.
For our own mind sometimes keeps us better informed
than seven sentinels sitting high on a watch-tower.
But above all pray to the Most High
that he may direct your way in truth.
Words: Thomas Greene, 18th century
It is the Lord, my covenant God,
Whose claims are all divine,
Who has an undisputed right
To govern me and mine.
It is the Lord! Should I distrust
Or contradict His will,
Who cannot do but what is just
And must be righteous still?
It is the Lord who gives me all,
My wealth, my friends, my ease,
And of His bounties may recall
Whatever part He please.
It is the Lord who can sustain
Beneath the heaviest load,
>From whom assistance I obtain
To tread the thorny road.
It is the Lord, whose matchless skill
Can from afflictions raise
Matter eternity to fill
With ever-growing praise.
It is the Lord, my covenant God,
Thrice blessed be His name!
Whose gracious promise, sealed with blood,
Must ever be the same.
SECOND READING [2 Corinthians 11:16-end]:
I repeat, let no one think that I am a fool; but if you do, then accept me as a fool, so that I too may boast a little. What I am saying in regard to this boastful confidence, I am saying not with the Lords authority, but as a fool; since many boast according to human standards, I will also boast. For you gladly put up with fools, being wise yourselves! For you put up with it when someone makes slaves of you, or preys upon you, or takes advantage of you, or puts on airs, or gives you a slap in the face. To my shame, I must say, we were too weak for that!
But whatever anyone dares to boast ofI am speaking as a foolI also dare to boast of that. Are they Hebrews? So am I. Are they Israelites? So am I. Are they descendants of Abraham? So am I. Are they ministers of Christ? I am talking like a madmanI am a better one: with far greater labours, far more imprisonments, with countless floggings, and often near death. Five times I have received from the Jews the forty lashes minus one. Three times I was beaten with rods. Once I received a stoning. Three times I was shipwrecked; for a night and a day I was adrift at sea; on frequent journeys, in danger from rivers, danger from bandits, danger from my own people, danger from Gentiles, danger in the city, danger in the wilderness, danger at sea, danger from false brothers and sisters; in toil and hardship, through many a sleepless night, hungry and thirsty, often without food, cold and naked. And, besides other things, I am under daily pressure because of my anxiety for all the churches. Who is weak, and I am not weak? Who is made to stumble, and I am not indignant?
If I must boast, I will boast of the things that show my weakness. The God and Father of the Lord Jesus (blessed be he for ever!) knows that I do not lie. In Damascus, the governor under King Aretas set a guard on the city of Damascus in order to seize me, but I was let down in a basket through a window in the wall, and escaped from his hands.
The Benedictus (Morning),
the Magnificat (Evening), or
Nunc dimittis (Night) may follow.
God of all mercies, we praise you that you have brought
us to this day, brightening our lives with the dawn
of promise and hope in Jesus Christ. Especially we thank
the warmth of sunlight, the wetness of rain and
snow, and all that nourishes the earth...
(We thank you, Lord.)
the presence and power of your Spirit...
the support and encouragement we receive from others...
those who provide for public safety and wellbeing...
the mission of the church around the world...
Merciful God, strengthen us in prayer that we may lift up
the brokenness of this world for your healing, and share
the saving love of Jesus Christ. Especially we pray for
those in positions of authority over others...
(Lord, hear our prayer.)
the lonely and forgotten...
children without family or homes...
agents of caring and relief...
the church in Asia and the Middle East...
you know our faithlessness and our blindness
to the rewards of goodness.
Guide us with your counsel
and be the strength of our hearts,
that we may not fall
but rejoice in the life of your eternal city;
through Jesus Christ our Mediator. Amen.
Gathering our prayers and praises into one,
let us pray as our Savior has taught us.
- The Lord's Prayer
Teach us your ways of justice, O Lord,
and lead us to practice your generosity. Amen.
The psalms are from _Celebrating Common Prayer_ (Mowbray), (c) The Society of Saint Francis 1992, which is used with permission.
The canticle is from _Common Worship: Daily Prayer, Preliminary
Edition_, copyright (c) The Archbishops' Council, 2002.
The biblical passage is from The New Revised Standard Version (Anglicized
Edition), copyright (c) 1989, 1995 by the Division of Christian Education
of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the USA. Used by
permission. All rights reserved.
The opening prayer and closing prayer are adapted from _Revised Common
Lectionary Prayers_, copyright (c) 2002 Consultation on Common Texts
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