This Daily Devotion is to help our members and others reflect on the understanding of Christian service to our Lord.
Devotion for Sunday, July 4, 2021
The Rt. Rev. Archimandrite, Msgr. George Appleyard
An Invitation to Payer
Our hearts may make plans, but the Lord will judge them. —We may think them good,
Psalm 33(34) 11-22
Come, children, and listen to me
and I will teach you the fear of the Lord. Who is there that wants life,
yearning to see good days?
Keep your tongue from evil
and your lips from uttering lies.
Turn from evil and do good,
seek peace and pursue it.
The eyes of the Lord are on the righteous,
and his ears on their petitions.
But the Lord’s face is turned from those who do evil to wipe their memory from the earth.
The just cried out and the Lord heard them,
and from all their afflictions he delivered them.
The Lord is close to the crushed
and will save the humble-minded.
How many are the afflictions of the righteous, but the Lord will rescue them from them all. He will guard all their bones,
not one of them shall be broken.
How wretched the death of sinners,
how misguided those who hate the righteous. The Lord will redeem the souls of his servants, none of those who hope in him will go wrong.
From St. Basil’s Homily on Humility.
The human being should have remained in the glory God had given. He would have had a preeminence that was real rather than false, being elevated by the power of God, being illustrious for divine wisdom, happy to have eternal life and its blessings. But, having turned his back on a desire for divine glory, and looking for something “better,” and striving for what he could not obtain, he lost what he could possess. And so, the best renovation for him, both the remedy for his illness and the way back to his original condition, is humility—not a fantasy that he could do this on his own, but seeking it instead from God. For this is the way in which he corrects his fault. In this way he is cured of his illness. In this way he will return to the sacred mandate that he had rejected.
You wished to raise Lazarus from the tomb before proceeding to your passion, O Lord. You wept over your beloved friend to the amazement of the bystanders who said, “See how much he loved him.” Did you see in Lazarus the whole human race which you love so tender-heartedly, and for whose sorry plight in sin you mourn, and did that make you weep the harder? Give me a tender and compassionate heart like yours! Amen!