Friday 27 January 2023

Today is Friday the 27th of January, in the third week of Ordinary time.

The King’s Singers sing Spem in Alium by Thomas Tallis. ‘I have never put my hope in any other but in you’. As I begin this time of prayer today, can I speak those words to God? Can I place all my hope, all my trust, all my faith in him?

Spem in alium nunquam habui
præter in te, Deus Israël,
qui irasceris et propitius eris,
et omnia peccata hominum in tribulatione dimittis.
Domine Deus, Creator cæli et terræ,
respice humilitatem nostram.

I have never put my hope
in any other but in You, God of Israel,
who will be angry and yet become again gracious,
and who forgives all the sins of man in suffering.
Lord God, Creator of heaven and earth,
look upon our lowliness.

Today’s reading is from the letter to the Hebrews.

Heb 10:32-39

But recall those earlier days when, after you had been enlightened, you endured a hard struggle with sufferings, sometimes being publicly exposed to abuse and persecution, and sometimes being partners with those so treated. For you had compassion for those who were in prison, and you cheerfully accepted the plundering of your possessions, knowing that you yourselves possessed something better and more lasting. Do not, therefore, abandon that confidence of yours; it brings a great reward. For you need endurance, so that when you have done the will of God, you may receive what was promised. For yet
‘in a very little while,
the one who is coming will come and will not delay;
but my righteous one will live by faith.
My soul takes no pleasure in anyone who shrinks back.’
But we are not among those who shrink back and so are lost, but among those who have faith and so are saved.

Here is a reading about how faith can be costly. It includes the line phrase that “you possessed something better and more lasting”. What’s the something better that is lasting for you?

This letter to the Hebrews speaks of cheerfulness even in difficult times; times when others or perhaps just life is persecuting you. We live in troubled times now. Would you like to catch more of that spirit of cheerfulness?

Listen again and be encouraged by the confidence and hope in this passage.

In the living of your life, with all its challenges and difficulties, what grace do you feel you need to keep going with good cheer? . . . Ask God for that grace.

Glory be to the Father and to the Son and to the Holy Spirit. As it was in the beginning, is now and ever shall be, world without end. Amen.

Friday, 27 January
3rd week in Ordinary Time
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