Wednesday 17 June
Today is Wednesday the 17 June, in the Eleventh Week of Ordinary Time.
The monks of Pluscarden Abbey sing Laetetur cor quaerentium: Let the heart of those who seek the Lord rejoice; seek the Lord and be strengthened, seek his face always. // Entering into prayer today, I too am seeking the Lord, seeking his face, looking for the signs of his presence in my life, gently guiding me in truth and peace and love.
Today’s reading is from the Gospel of Matthew.
Jesus said to his disciples: “Beware of practising your piety before others in order to be seen by them; for then you have no reward from your Father in heaven. "So whenever you give alms, do not sound a trumpet before you, as the hypocrites do in the synagogues and in the streets, so that they may be praised by others. Truly I tell you, they have received their reward. But when you give alms, do not let your left hand know what your right hand is doing, so that your alms may be done in secret; and your Father who sees in secret will reward you. "And whenever you pray, do not be like the hypocrites; for they love to stand and pray in the synagogues and at the street corners, so that they may be seen by others. Truly I tell you, they have received their reward. But whenever you pray, go into your room and shut the door and pray to your Father who is in secret; and your Father who sees in secret will reward you.”
Nobody likes a show off! Nobody likes a drama queen! But sometimes we do want to be seen. Sometimes we do want to be recognised. If I do something good, and somebody’s opinion of me goes up, is that bad? Maybe not, but am I watching to see who is marking my card? Is that how I see God? And is that how I think God sees me?
We hope, don’t we(?), that we do good things because they come from the heart. The heart is my secret place out of which I act. It is there that God sees me, it is there that God reads me. How does that make me feel?
Listen to the reading again, and in the quiet of your headphones, or the privacy of your room, or wherever you are, in that quietness, let it touch the secret place of your heart.
What is in my heart now that I want to share with God?
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.