24“A disciple is not above the teacher, nor a slave above the master;25it is enough for the disciple to be like the teacher, and the slave like the master. If they have called the master of the house Beelzebul, how much more will they malign those of his household!
26“So have no fear of them; for nothing is covered up that will not be uncovered, and nothing secret that will not become known.27What I say to you in the dark, tell in the light; and what you hear whispered, proclaim from the housetops.28Do not fear those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul; rather fear him who can destroy both soul and body in hell.29Are not two sparrows sold for a penny? Yet not one of them will fall to the ground apart from your Father.30And even the hairs of your head are all counted.31So do not be afraid; you are of more value than many sparrows.
32“Everyone therefore who acknowledges me before others, I also will acknowledge before my Father in heaven;33but whoever denies me before others, I also will deny before my Father in heaven.
34“Do not think that I have come to bring peace to the earth; I have not come to bring peace, but a sword.35For I have come to set a man against his father, and a daughter against her mother, and a daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law;36and one’s foes will be members of one’s own household.37Whoever loves father or mother more than me is not worthy of me; and whoever loves son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me;38and whoever does not take up the cross and follow me is not worthy of me.39Those who find their life will lose it, and those who lose their life for my sake will find it.
- Light a candle to remember Christ’s presence with you.
- Sit five to fifteen minutes in silence bringing your attention to the Breath.
- As you find freedom in the Breath, reflect on your relationships.
- Which relationships are keeping you from God today?
- Where do you notice this unfreedom in your body?
- Hear the invitation from Jesus today to lean into your relationship with God.
- Let your relationship with God be primary.
- Let your relationship with God free you in the places of unfreedom.
- What is your message from God?
- Give thanks to God for this time in prayer and for any new insights you have received.
- Share as you feel led in the reply box below.
Revised Common Lectionary Readings for Sunday, June 21, 2020, the Twelfth Sunday in Ordinary Time (Year A)
Psalm 86:1-10, 16-17
If you use these prayers in other groups, please give credit to author. Permission to use in not-for-profit settings. (c) 2020 The Rev. Dr. Lil Smith, DASD
Rev. Dr. Lil Smith is a trained spiritual director, supervisor, and co-founder of Retreat House Spirituality Center in Richardson, TX. Upon completion of her spiritual direction training, Lil began Praying the Lectionary in 2011 as a spiritual practice for her morning prayer time. Instead of reading about someone else’s experience of God, it was important for her to create a prayer practice that would encourage felt sense experience of the Holy emerging from within. It dawned on her others might enjoy the practice, as well. So she began to share them on this site.
As you experience the practice of Praying the Lectionary, adopt a loving, caring, and compassionate stance. If the end of your prayer and meditation time is not pointing to love and hope, there is more work to do. Keep wrestling. God is faithful to your journey. Love and hope will emerge. Be gentle with yourself and befriend any judgment that arises in you.