This Daily Devotion is to help our members and others reflect on the understanding of Christian service to our Lord.
Devotion for Friday, December 3, 2021
The Rt. Rev. Archimandrite, Msgr. George Appleyard
An Invitation to Prayer
The cow and the bear shall live together,
their children play together,
and the lion will eat hay like an ox.
The baby shall play beside the cobra’s den,
and a child put his hand in the viper’s lair.
There shall be no harm or destruction on my holy mountain
for the earth shall be filled with the knowledge of the Lord. [Isaiah 11:7] –O come, let us look for the Kingdom of Peace!
Your word is a lamp for my feet, and a light on my path.
I have sworn and will stand firm to observe your just laws.
I have been greatly humbled, O Lord,
enliven me according to your word.
Be pleased with the gift from my mouth, I pray, O Lord, and teach me your judgments.
My life is always in my hands
yet I have not forgotten your law.
Sinners set a trap for me,
but I did not stray from your precepts.
I have inherited your testimonies forever;
they are the joy of my heart.
I have set my heart to carrying out your laws forever,
to the very end.
A reading adapted from Basil’s, On the Human Condition
You were appointed to rule irrational fish, and so you should become the master of irrational passions. “And let them rule the wild beasts.” You do rule wild beasts? You might ask what beasts you have within yourself. Frankly, you have thousands within you, a huge herd of beasts. Please don’t dismiss this as outrageous. Anger is a little beast when it barks in the heart. Isn’t it wilder than any dog? Isn’t the deceit lurking in a lying soul harder to tame than any wild bear? Isn’t hypocrisy a beast? Isn’t the vicious insult a scorpion? Isn’t someone secretly perpetrating revenge more dangerous than any snake? Isn’t a greedy individual a hungry wolf? What kind of beast is not in us! We become like irrational animals when we give the passions free reign and then find herds of beasts within us.
Holy Spirit of the Living God, fill us with divine knowledge that we may tame our obsessions and bridle our addictions. May your great light help us to recognize those impulses which bring strife and discord, which divide us against ourselves as well as rupture our relationships with others. Bring balance to our lives, and such authentic living, that we shall experience peace and contentment in our days and forever. Amen!