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Wednesday, 10 June 2015

"Dear God, This is What You Ought To Do...."

Or, maybe, "This is what I would do if I were You, God."
"And by the way, You should know this...."

I read once about how off-putting some Prayers of the Faithful are, and how difficult it can be to compose them.
"For XXX, that YYY, we pray to the Lord...."
                             "Lord, hear our prayer."

Not the XXX part, we know pretty well what the problems, our problems are.
But the YYY?
Do we really want to tell God what the solution to the problems with which we present Him should be?

Isn't this a corker?
Lord God, we seek to follow the example of your Word, your Son and our Brother, Jesus.
We know from Him that your Holy Spirit is with us when we gather together in Your Name.
(Pretty good, so far.)
Therefore it is important to us that....
(Nope, couldn't resist giving the Big Fellow, and I don't mean the cardinal archbishop of NY, a word of advice, could ya?)
We believe that this is only possible for a Church that...
So much for,
Jesus looked at them and said, “For human beings it is impossible, but not for God. All things are possible for God.”
Of course, that's not a very popular chapter just now in the world at large, is it?
In fact, I shouldn't be surprised if it has been excised from a number of Bibles - so the authors of that prayer are not to blame for not knowing it. This is how the beginning of it goes:
The Pharisees approached and asked, “Is it lawful for a husband to divorce his wife?” They were testing him. He said to them in reply, “What did Moses command you?” They replied, “Moses permitted him to write a bill of divorce and dismiss her.” But Jesus told them, “Because of the hardness of your hearts he wrote you this commandment. But from the beginning of creation, ‘God made them male and female. For this reason a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife and the two shall become one flesh.’ So they are no longer two but one flesh. Therefore what God has joined together, no human being must separate.” In the house the disciples again questioned him about this. He said to them, “Whoever divorces his wife and marries another commits adultery against her; and if she divorces her husband and marries another, she commits adultery.” 
Oh, VOTF finish their prayer like this:
We long for a Church which acknowledges the full value of all its people and bases its judgments on Your Word.
Please help us become that Church. Amen.
Basing our judgements on Your Word.... hmm.
And on His words?

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