This Daily Devotion is to help our members and others reflect on the understanding of Christian service to our Lord.
Devotion for Sunday, December 18, 2022
The Rt. Rev. Archimandrite, Msgr. George Appleyard
An Invitation to Prayer
This is what the Lord of Hosts says,
In a little while I will shake the heavens and the earth, the sea and the dry land.
I will shake all the nations
and the treasures of all the nations shall come
and I will fill this house with glory. (Haggai 2:7)
–O come, let us adore him.
I have practiced justice and right,
do not abandon me to those who oppress me.
Guarantee good things to your servant,
do not let the arrogant oppress me.
My eyes languish for your salvation,
and for word of your justice.
Deal with your servant according to your mercy,
and teach me your precepts.
I am your servant; teach me
and I will know your testimonies.
It is time for the Lord to act,
they have voided your law.
And so I have loved your commandments more than gold, even pure gold.
And every one of them I find right
and every path of evil I have hated.
A reading adapted from Basil’s, On the Human Condition
“And God blessed them and said, Grow and multiply, and fill the earth.” [Gen. 1:28] There are two kinds of growth, physical and psychological. The growth of the mind is progress to perfection through things learned, while physical growth is development from a smaller stature to an appropriate stature. Thus “grow,” addressed to the irrational animals, is aimed at full physical development, to a natural maturity; but we are told to “grow” in our inner humanity, which is progress in growing toward God. This is what Paul meant when he said [Phil. 3:13], “I reach out for the things ahead while forgetting what I left behind.” This is growth in vision, in piety, toward improvement, as we ever grasp for true realities, always leaving what had been to seek what is lacking in piety, as far as this is required of us.
O Lord God, as you spoke through the prophet Haggai of a new temple, to be more glorious than the previous, make our Order a cathedral of your glory, and every member a chapel therein, so that by our pledged way of life in your service we may come to see your glory in Christ Jesus, our Lord, the living Temple rebuilt in three days. [Cf. John 2:21] Amen.
Note: The prophet Haggai is remembered in the East today.