This Daily Devotion is to help our members and others reflect on the understanding of Christian service to our Lord.
Devotion for Wednesday, March 10, 2021
The Rt. Rev. Archimandrite, Msgr. George Appleyard
An Invitation to Prayer
Let us purify ourselves in these three weeks
as Israel purified itself in three days. (Cf. Ex. 19:10 & ff.)
—Then we shall climb the Mount of our prayerful desires
and we shall praise Christ our Lord.
Show no mercy to all those who do evil.
They return at evening
and roam the city like hungry dogs.
See how they utter an opinion with their mouth
while there is a sword behind their lips,
but who’s listening?
But you will burst out laughing at them;
you will spurn all the nations.
My Strength, I will watch for you
because you are my helper:
the God whose mercy goes before me,
my God, who will take vengeance on my enemies.
Do no kill them, lest they forget your law.
Scatter them by your power
and bring them down, O Lord my protector.
A reading adapted from Basil’s Long Rules, Question #3
Question: What of charity toward our neighbor?
We have already said that the law of God sustains and develops the powers already latent within us. So, since we have been directed to love our neighbor as our self, let us consider if the Lord has given us the ability to fulfill this commandment. Does anyone deny that humans are social and gregarious creatures, neither savage nor solitary? There is nothing as compatible with our nature as living in a community and depending on each other, and loving our own kind. You see, the Lord himself implanted the seeds of these qualities in us in anticipation of their fruits at the proper time as his due. He said, “A new commandment I give you, that you love one another.” Moreover, wishing to stimulate our soul to observe this mandate, he did not demand signs and wonders as a way to recognize his disciples (although he gave the power to do so as well in the Holy Spirit), but said, “This is how everyone will know you are my disciples, if you love each other.” In fact, he established so close a connection between the two great commandments that the benefit we bestow on a neighbor passes to him. “He says, when I was hungry you fed me,” and so on and added, “as long as you did it for one of my least brothers or sisters, you did it for me.”
As we approach the middle of this sacred season and turn our gaze to the commemoration of your passion and resurrection, let us see your cross and exclaim, how great is Christ, the loving friend of all people! How great his works! Let us give glory to his infinite mercy! Amen.