February 23 Devotional

Come to Stillness: Take a few minutes to allow your mind and heart to be still before God.

Opening Prayer: O Lord our God, help us to be faithful to gather what you have provided for our hearts and souls this day - that we may feed on you and live. In the name of Jesus, the bread of life. Amen.

Scripture Reading for the Day: Luke 9:57-62

Reading for Reflection: I love the plough that opens up the earth, lays bare the soil where seed can fall. It matters little that the widening wound of earth still hesitates, uncertain of the nutrients it has to offer falling seed. The seed is sown, the wound of earth closed up again. The broken soil becomes a womb, a sheltering tomb of life protecting what must die to live. We wait then for signs of life: the stem, the leaf, the bud, the fruit or vegetable to wend its way from dark to light. The image of the plough opening the soil to welcome seed offers us a metaphor for the human heart. The heart too must be prepared, readied to receive its daily seed. No more looking back!

I love the Word of God that pierces the human heart, lays bare the soul where seed can fall. The sower’s passion invites the heart to receptivity. The sower looks not back to see if the heart is worthy. Sower and plough become one. With contemplative awareness they trust the widening wound of the opening heart. This laying bare the heart’s good soil is a moment of readiness. She or he who receives the seed of the Word of God receives also the silence of the Word and waits to be transformed. No more looking back!

I love the disciple who allows the heart to be pierced. Obedient to the piercing Word and broken heart, the disciple learns to wait, trusting the Word to die and live within the heart’s good soil. The disciple’s heart becomes a sheltering womb and tomb for what must die to live. I love the one who is transformed into a disciple by surrendering to the Word of God. Rooted in obedience to the Word, there is no more looking back! (Abide by Macrina Wiederkehr)

Reflection and Listening: silent and written

Hymn of the Day

Prayer: for the church, for others, for myself

Pray for the Global Mission Conference today - for the attending missionaries, travel, safety, health, physical rest, spiritual healing and renewal. Pray for the regions of Southeast Asia and South Asia.

Closing Prayer: You alone bring order to the unruly wills and affections of sinners. Grant us grace to love what You command, and desire what You have promised, so that, among the swift and varied changes of this world, our hearts may be fixed where true joy is to be found. Amen. (Venite by Robert Benson)