This Daily Devotion is to help our members and others reflect on the understanding of Christian service to our Lord.
Devotion for Saturday, March 6, 2021
The Rt. Rev. Archimandrite, Msgr. George Appleyard
An Invitation to Prayer
Christ himself consecrated these forty days
by his own fasting.
—Let us bless him during this time,
and exalt him forever.
Out of the depths I cried to you, O Lord;
O Lord, listen to my voice!
Open your ears to the sound of my supplication.
If you keep count of offences, O Lord,
O Lord, who shall (remain) standing?
Atonement lies with you!
I waited for you because of your name.
My soul awaited your word,
my soul trusted the Lord from dawn to dusk.
Let Israel hope in the Lord,
for there is mercy with the Lord,
and full redemption with him,
and he shall redeem Israel from all its iniquity.
A reading adapted from Basil’s Long Rules, Question #2, cont.
We may say nothing of the sunrise, the phases of the moon, the changing of the seasons, the water that falls from the sky as rain, the mists that arise from the surface of the sea, and then the ocean itself, and all the creatures that live in the waters or fly through the air, and the countless varieties of animals, all destined for our welfare. But what we must not overlook, even if we cannot do it adequately—and what is virtually impossible for anyone with a good mind—is the fact that God created humanity in his image and likeness, and that God deemed humanity worthy to know him, something denied to all the other animals. God enabled people to think, and to find delight in the unbelievable beauties of paradise, and to govern all the creatures of the earth. But when people fell into sin by the cunning of the serpent—and from sin, into death and all its attending evils—God did not abandon people. God first gave the Law to guide them, and appointed angels to guard them, sent prophets to repudiate wickedness and teach virtue, helped them curb vice by threatening punishment and aroused them to virtue by rewards and by revealing—over and over—the fate of the good and the bad by selecting some individuals to demonstrate the fate of each group as a warning to others.
Blessed are you, the Infinite One, whose presence fills creation and who makes us holy through faith that leads to good works. You have given us your Word in his flesh and in the Holy Scriptures. May we plumb the depths, not simply of the written word but also of your living Word, that we might recover your divine likeness in ourselves and so find peace and joy unending. Amen.