Daily Office Readings for Saturday of the 4th Week of Lent: Year 2
Morning, Psalm 107:33 to 43; Evening, Psalm 108:1-6(7-13); 33;
Exodus 2:23 to 3:15; 1st Corinthians 13:1 to 13; Mark 9:14 to 29:
“He said to them, ‘This kind can come out only through prayer.” (Mark 9:29)
I feel like not enough Christian effort is applied in prayer today either. By this I mean the “sit-in-your-room-alone – prayer.” After the disciples of our Lord Jesus failed to cast out the evil spirit by whatever means they were using, Jesus himself interviewed the father of the boy about how long this has been happening. Then Jesus told the evil presence not only to come out of the boy, but also to never enter him again. Our Lord Jesus later explains about needing to pray more. He says that “This kind can come out only through prayer.” This is still what we need today.
We have suffered as a planet from this Covid 19 and even some clergy, Christian clergy, have gone along with secular instruction to establish and maintain physical (social) distancing. And that has worked but perhaps during our time, (alone) distancing, we also prayed, prayed without ceasing.
Perhaps this physical distancing was good advice for the physical self. How about our spiritual selves? Sooner or later we will all stand before the One for whom nothing is impossible. What response will we give for not coming to our Lord for help? Our Presiding Bishop once said the most important prayer we can pray is one word, and that word is; “Help.”
Folks, we must have faith and believe. Our Lord Jesus took issue with the father who showed some doubt when he ask, “if you are able to do anything, have pity on us and help us.” (Mark 9: 22) To this Jesus responds, “‘If you are able!—All things can be done for the one who believes” (Mark 9: 23). My brothers and sisters in Christ Jesus, we must never under estimate the power of our faith in God or the power of prayer that it brings to bear on whatever troubles us. God loves us so much that God can’t refuse whatever we ask, but we must trust and ask. And we ask for the benefit of one another everywhere. We don’t ask just for ourselves, our family, or our Church or our Country, but for human kind all over the planet as our technology today enables us to know of it.
Our planet has an evil presence, it is war and violence. This is evidenced by the violence against Ukraine. It is wrong and sinful. And God needs to hear our concern about it as God heard about such evil through the cries of the people enslaved under pharaoh in our Exodus reading for today. So too, God needs to hear about how much we need for the evil of our day to go away. God wants us to ask for help. Oh my people of prayer, Pray! “This kind [of evil] can come out only through prayer.”
As we listen to what the Spirit is saying to us, let us live to love, to serve, and to teach, while pondering anew what the Almighty can do. John