Prayer of the Week
(pray this prayer each day this week)
God of Cleansing and Healing,
My life has been imperfect. Many of my past mistakes have caused me grief and shame. I am sick, sick with a disease called sin. And this illness, like an addiction, causes me to behave selfishly. Under its influence, I may say and do things that hurt other people, neglect other people, treat other people unjustly and unfairly. I know this is wrong… yet, I continue to do it. God, you have blessed me, and all people, with the gift of relationships with others. I can, by the power of your Spirit, treat others as I would like to be treated. I can, by the power of your Spirit, be filled with joy and thanksgiving sharing life and love with others. This week help me to cherish my relationships with loved ones, neighbors, fellow Christians, and fellow human beings in such a way that I care for their well-being, treat them fairly, and protect them from injustice. In Jesus name I pray. Amen
Read 1 Samuel 11; 1 Samuel 12:1-7; Psalm 51
Ash Wednesday: Questions for Reflection
King David saw Bathsheba, desired her, imposed himself upon her, and committed adultery with her. When she was found to be pregnant, he conspired to murder her husband Uriah (a faithful soldier of David’s). David ordered Uriah into the thick battle and then had the army retreat, leaving Uriah to perish.
(1 Samuel 11) David knew God, God’s will, God’s favor… why would David do these things? On the surface, it seems like ‘lust’ was the culprit… David was just swept away by desire. But, IS this the whole story? What other factors are playing a role in David’s actions? Why are his crimes more than just the result of hot-headed lust, but crimes of terrible injustice?
(1 Samuel 12:1-7) The prophet Nathan comes to David with an account of a rich man who exploited a poor man and took his beloved lamb. The injustice so enraged David that he called for the man’s death. Of course, Nathan, in parable form, was Describing David’s own actions. What was David’s reaction when Nathan accuses him?
Action for the Week
Like David, we are all capable of great evil and sin… as well as deep repentance and healing. Allow God to help you discern one way you have treated someone with injustice. Repent before God in prayer. Seek out that someone (if appropriate) and apologize. If it’s in your power… act to begin healing that relationship. If its not in your power… pray for God to begin the healing.