Friday 22 September 2023

Today is Friday 22 September, in the 24th week of Ordinary time.

The monks of Pluscarden Abbey sing Venite filii, audite me. “Come, my sons and daughters, listen to me. Come to the Lord and be enlightened; and your faces will not be put to shame.” As I enter into prayer now, can I sense that invitation from God? Can I hear those words spoken to me? - and accept that welcome, and that reassurance that God wants to give me?

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Today’s reading is from the Gospel of Luke.

Luke 7:31-35

‘To what then will I compare the people of this generation, and what are they like? They are like children sitting in the market-place and calling to one another,

“We played the flute for you, and you did not dance;
we wailed, and you did not weep.”

For John the Baptist has come eating no bread and drinking no wine, and you say, “He has a demon”; the Son of Man has come eating and drinking, and you say, “Look, a glutton and a drunkard, a friend of tax-collectors and sinners!” Nevertheless, wisdom is vindicated by all her children.’

When Jesus says, "What are they like?" about the people of his own time, is there a hint of annoyance or frustration there? What is it, do you think, that might cause that?

‘We played the flute for you, and you did not dance; we wailed, and you did not weep.’ Could Jesus speak those words to you? Could it be that he's been inviting you to mourn, or to dance, or to do something else, and you've failed to notice?

As you hear the passage read again, imagine Jesus speaking these words, not two thousand years ago, but to the people of today, to you. How does it feel? What thoughts does it give rise to?

What is God saying to you today through these words? How is he speaking to you? Talk to God now about this, freely, as one friend speaks to another.

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, 22 September
24th week in Ordinary Time
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