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

Devotion for Thursday, August 12, 2021

The Rt. Rev. Archimandrite, Msgr. George Appleyard

August 8

An Invitation to Prayer

Bless the Lord, winter’s cold and summer’s heat,

sing to him and acclaim him gloriously forever.

—Bless the Lord, snowfall and dewfall,

sing to him and acclaim him gloriously forever.

(Daniel 3:67&68)

Psalm 122(123)

I have raised my eyes to you who dwell in heaven.

See! Like the eyes of a servant on the hands of his master,

like the eyes of a maid on the hands of her mistress,

so are our eyes on the Lord our God until he takes pity on us.

 

Have mercy on us, O God, have mercy on us

for we have had enough of contempt—

our soul has had more than its fill of it.

Censure for those who have it good,

and scorn for the proud!

  

From Basil’s homily on Psalm 14, sec. 6:

“Give to anyone who asks you for something, and do not refuse someone who wants to borrow from you.” (Matt. 5:42) The Bible exhorts us to community, mutual charity, and what is proper to our nature. A human being is a social and communal animal. Because our life is communal, and we spend our lives with each other, generosity toward improving the lot of the needy is a necessity. Give to those who beg from you. The Lord wants you, out of charity, to give to those who beg, but also to discern and reckon the need of each one who begs. And in Acts we learned how to do this successfully from those expert in fulfilling the goal of piety. “All those who had fields or houses sold them and, bringing the proceeds from what was sold, laid them at the feet of the apostles who distributed them to each one of those in need.” (Acts 4:34&35)

A Prayer

You call us to be as innocent as a dove, O Lord, but as smart as a snake, (Mat. 10:16) lest we squander our resources—whatever they may be—on charlatans, and thus diminish what we could give to relieve those genuinely in need. Beyond that, O Lord, do not allow me to give to someone begging simply to be rid of an inconvenience or annoyance. Rather, have you Spirit move me to make every contribution I make a genuine personal gift from one human being to another, in whom I should find you. Amen