A prayer for the twenty-second Sunday in Ordinary Time

God.

If I understand correctly,

You care both about what I say and how I say it,

You care both about what I do and what reasons I have for doing it.

You care about widows and orphans and invite me to do the same.

You care about the damage to others I can do with the anger in my heart.

You care about the stories I tell of you or the lack of those stories.

You care that the word you have put in us changes what we build our lives around, what we use to make our decisions.

We know that you care because we are warned that it takes work to remember what you have said.

We know that you care because you so clearly describe the struggles that we have with our anger at the incompetence of other people and our desire to current them, when our very anger illustrates often that our, my own, biggest problem isn’t with others, it is with myself.

Forgive me my trespasses. Help me to forgive those who I believe, though I’m not really sure, have trespassed against me.

And today, help us to spend time simply listening to you and then doing what you say, a little bit at a time.

And today, help us start by keeping a tight rein on our tongues. And the hearts that feed them self-rightousness or your graciousness.

Through Christ our Lord.

Amen.

+++

Reflecting on James 1:17-27 and Deuteronomy 4:1-9

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