This Daily Devotion is to help our members and others reflect on the understanding of Christian service to our Lord.

Devotion for Tuesday, May 18, 2021

The Rt. Rev. Archimandrite, Msgr. George Appleyard

An Invitation to Prayer

O Comforter, to you we cry,
O heavenly gift of God most high;
—O fount of life and fire of love,
and sweet anointing from above.

Psalm 138/139:7-12

Where can I go from your Spirit?
Where can I escape your presence?
If I go up to the heavens, you are there.
If I descend into the underworld, you are there.
If I take wing at dawn and come to rest at the limits of the sea,
indeed, you hand would guide me
and your right hand would secure me.
If I say, surely the darkness will cover me,
even the night is brighter for me.
For darkness will not be dark for you,
and night will light up like day—
night and day are the same to you.

From Basil’s On the Holy Spirit, chapter 15 concluded

By this we can grasp the distinction between the grace that comes from the Holy Spirit as compared to just baptism in water. John baptized with water, but the Lord Jesus Christ by the Holy Spirit. John said, “Indeed, I baptize you with water for repentance, but the one coming after me is mightier than I—and I’m not worthy to carry his shoes. He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and with fire.” Here he is referring to the Last Judgment when he mentions the baptism by fire because Paul says, “Everyone’s work will be tested by fire to assay it.” And again, “that day will make it clear, because it will be revealed by fire.” Now there have been some who, in championing true religion, have undergone death for Christ’s sake actually and not simply figuratively; and these have no need of the outward sign of water for their salvation because they were baptized in their own blood.

A Prayer

Most Holy Spirit, how sweet is your fruit of kindness! May it grow in us and season everything we attempt and do. May it relieve the pains of life in this world and entice us to follow Jesus, and may those who find kindness in our dealings with them sense your goodness through us so that they, too, may desire the Kingdom of Heaven for themselves. Amen.