Pondering for Friday, April 23, 2021

Daily Office Readings for Friday of the 3rd Week of Easter: Year 1

Morning,  Psalm 105:1 to 22; Evening,  Psalm 105:23 to 45
Daniel 6:1 to 152nd  John 1 to 13Luke 5:12 to 26

“The men said, ‘We shall not find any ground for complaint against this Daniel unless we find it in connection with the law of his God.” (Daniel 6:5)

Throughout the Bible, and in our life today, we try to justify our evil intentions by finding fault in the traditions and pious practices of others. These subjects of King Darius now conspire to destroy Daniel out of their jealousy and contempt for him.

This jealousy and contempt happens when we behold others around God rather than through God.  People who perhaps didn’t pray in their tradition at all, go and point their finger at one who is trying to hold to his practice of regular prayer.  “Then they responded to the king, ‘Daniel, one of the exiles from Judah, pays no attention to you, O king, or to the interdict you have signed, but he is saying his prayers three times a day.” (Daniel 6:13)  Of course this accusation will condemn Daniel even though the king does not want to do this. 

Regardless of the faith path we are on we must view one another through the eyes of our Creator as we understand that that Creator does not make worthless people or people brought into the world only to be hated.  We are all worthy of God’s love and therefore should be worthy of the love of each other.  We should question any interdict, rule, custom, policy, law, or legislation that hinders or harms another human being who is trying to honor God in his or her own way.

If we admire the good of a person who worships different than ourselves we should lift that up to be appreciated if not copied. I have heard that Muslims pray five times a day. I think that’s wonderful. Our own Book of Common Prayer offers opportunities for us to pray at least four times a day: we have Morning Prayer, Noonday Prayers, Evening Prayer and Compline for the close of the day. It is from our Daily Office that this blog is based. Unfortunately, some of our none praying Episcopalians will be critical of the practice of Muslims and other traditions, to include some Christian traditions. Such criticism comes from gazing at others around God, rather than through God. It leads only to condescension and an arrogance that is not born from the love of God, as was our Lord Jesus, who loves everybody, as we should also.

For this evening and tomorrow day my friends; Shabbat Shalom

Let us live to love, more than we just love to live, listening to what the Spirit is saying to, and through, the saints of God, while pondering anew what the Almighty can do. John

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