This Daily Devotion is to help our members and others reflect on the understanding of Christian service to our Lord.
Devotion for Wednesday, August 3, 2022
The Rt. Rev. Archimandrite, Msgr. George Appleyard
An Invitation to Prayer
Wisdom is a kindly spirit
but is not indifferent to blasphemy. —For God knows our inmost feelings,
he searches the heart and hears the tongue. (Wis. 1:6) Let us aim to please him in thought, word and deed!
Lord, O Lord, the strength that will save me, you are my helmet on the day of battle.
Do not hand me over to the designs of sinners who have schemed against me—
do not abandon me so they can gloat.
The thrust of those that surround me,
the venom of their lips, will drop on them. Blazing coals will fall on those on earth, and you will send them down to hard labor and they shall never get back up.
A gossip will not prosper on earth,
evil shall hound the wicked to destruction.
I know that the Lord will maintain
the cause of the poor and the rights of the needy. Surely the just will acknowledge your name, and the upright will live in your presence.
From St. Basil’s Homily on Humility.
If you are mindful of what Christ said (Cf. Matt 6:2)—that a reward from God is supplanted by deliberately seeking adulation from others and doing good to be noticed by them—try not to elicit praised from others the way some do, for “they have already received their reward.” Since God is an impartial witness, strive to win his esteem since he gives a more abundant reward. But, have you been thought worthy of a privileged position? Do people respect and honor you? Then bring yourself down to the level of your subordinates rather than “lording it over those in your charge” (I Pet. 5:3), and do not behave like the rulers of this world since the Lord instructed those who wish to be preeminent to be the servant of all. (Mk. 10:44)
Humility may be counterfeit, O God, and a salve for my ego may be wrung from others in the most devious of ways, as bait is set out in a trap. May your Holy Spirit bring me to know myself, as painful as it may be at times, so that I am no longer my own worst enemy. May I learn to prize your approval—and only that—especially when I make some progress in my spiritual life, and may this be enough for me. Amen.