Plead Your Case Before the Mountains: Micah 6:1-8

Micah 6:1-8

1   Hear what the LORD says:
          Rise, plead your case before the mountains,
          and let the hills hear your voice.
2   Hear, you mountains, the controversy of the LORD,
          and you enduring foundations of the earth;
     for the LORD has a controversy with his people,
          and he will contend with Israel.

3   “O my people, what have I done to you?
          In what have I wearied you? Answer me!
4   For I brought you up from the land of Egypt,
          and redeemed you from the house of slavery;
     and I sent before you Moses,
          Aaron, and Miriam.
5   O my people, remember now what King Balak of Moab devised,
          what Balaam son of Beor answered him,
     and what happened from Shittim to Gilgal,
          that you may know the saving acts of the LORD.”

6  “With what shall I come before the LORD,
          and bow myself before God on high?
     Shall I come before him with burnt offerings,
          with calves a year old?
7   Will the LORD be pleased with thousands of rams,
          with ten thousands of rivers of oil?
     Shall I give my firstborn for my transgression,
          the fruit of my body for the sin of my soul?”
8   He has told you, O mortal, what is good;
          and what does the LORD require of you
     but to do justice, and to love kindness,
          and to walk humbly with your God?

  • Light a candle to remember Christ’s presence with you.
  • Sit five to fifteen minutes in silent meditation paying close attention to the deep breath.
  • What need to please God do carry with you today that needs to be set aside as you sit with God?
  • Name this and set it aside. If there is more than one, repeat this exercise.
  • What justice are you doing?
  • What kindness are you loving?
  • What humble path are you walking with God?
  • Is there an invitation to something new today?
  • What is God’s message for you?
  • 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, February 2, 2020, the Fourth Sunday in Ordinary Time (Year A)

Micah 6:1-8
Psalm 15
1 Corinthians 1:18-31
Matthew 5:1-12

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.

John 18:33-37 – “Everyone who belongs to the truth listens to my voice.”

John 18:33-37

33Then Pilate entered the headquarters again, summoned Jesus, and asked him, “Are you the King of the Jews?” 34Jesus answered, “Do you ask this on your own, or did others tell you about me?” 35Pilate replied, “I am not a Jew, am I? Your own nation and the chief priests have handed you over to me. What have you done?” 36Jesus answered, “My kingdom is not from this world. If my kingdom were from this world, my followers would be fighting to keep me from being handed over to the Jews. But as it is, my kingdom is not from here.” 37Pilate asked him, “So you are a king?” Jesus answered, “You say that I am a king. For this I was born, and for this I came into the world, to testify to the truth. Everyone who belongs to the truth listens to my voice.”

  • Light a candle to remember Christ’s presence with you.
  • Sit five to fifteen minutes in silent meditation paying close attention to the deep breath.
  • Push back your shoulders as you breathe deeply, allowing your chest to expand fully and free you from any tension.
  • Continue to be opened by the breath.
  • Jesus came into this world to be Lord of those who belong to the truth.
  • How do you follow the truth?
  • What voice of Jesus do you hear?
  • What words are written on your heart?
  • What words rise to your lips?
  • How does Jesus want you to respond to the truth?
  • What is God’s message for you?
  • 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, November 18, 2018, the Thirty-Third Sunday in Ordinary Time, Year B

1 Samuel 1:4-20
1 Samuel 2:1-10
Hebrews 10:11-14 (15-18) 19-25
Mark 13:1-8

If you use these prayers in other groups, please give credit to author. Permission to use in not-for-profit settings. (c) 2018 The Rev. Dr. Lil Smith, DASD

1 Samuel 2:1-10 Talk no more so very proudly, let not arrogance come from your mouth

1 Samuel 2:1-10

1Hannah prayed and said, “My heart exults in the LORD; my strength is exalted in my God. My mouth derides my enemies, because I rejoice in my victory.

2“There is no Holy One like the LORD, no one besides you; there is no Rock like our God. 3Talk no more so very proudly, let not arrogance come from your mouth; for the LORD is a God of knowledge, and by him actions are weighed. 4The bows of the mighty are broken, but the feeble gird on strength. 5Those who were full have hired themselves out for bread, but those who were hungry are fat with spoil. The barren has borne seven, but she who has many children is forlorn. 6The LORD kills and brings to life; he brings down to Sheol and raises up. 7The LORD makes poor and makes rich; he brings low, he also exalts. 8He raises up the poor from the dust; he lifts the needy from the ash heap, to make them sit with princes and inherit a seat of honor. For the pillars of the earth are the Lord’s, and on them he has set the world.

9“He will guard the feet of his faithful ones, but the wicked shall be cut off in darkness; for not by might does one prevail. 10The LORD! His adversaries shall be shattered; the Most High will thunder in heaven. The LORD will judge the ends of the earth; he will give strength to his king, and exalt the power of his anointed.”

  • Light a candle to remember Christ’s presence with you.
  • Sit five to fifteen minutes in silent meditation paying close attention to the deep breath.
  • Open your heart with Hannah’s song.  Let the breath fill you with God’s faithfulness.
  • Hannah praises the Lord when she gives Samuel back to God as she had promised before God blessed her.
  • The Lord raises Hannah up as a faithful one.
  • Today, consider how are you a faithful one, giving back to God that which God has blessed you.
  • How are you lifted up in your humbleness?
  • How is God lifting up the humble in the world?
  • Who are the strong who will be broken?  Who are the weak who will be raised up?
  • What is God’s message for you?
  • 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, November 18, 2018, the Thirty-Third Sunday in Ordinary Time, Year B

1 Samuel 1:4-20
1 Samuel 2:1-10
Hebrews 10:11-14 (15-18) 19-25
Mark 13:1-8

If you use these prayers in other groups, please give credit to author. Permission to use in not-for-profit settings. (c) 2018 The Rev. Dr. Lil Smith, DASD

Ephesians 6: 10-20 Put on the whole armor of God

Ephesians 6:10-20

10Finally, be strong in the Lord and in the strength of his power. 11Put on the whole armor of God, so that you may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. 12For our struggle is not against enemies of blood and flesh, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers of this present darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places. 13Therefore take up the whole armor of God, so that you may be able to withstand on that evil day, and having done everything, to stand firm. 14Stand therefore, and fasten the belt of truth around your waist, and put on the breastplate of righteousness. 15As shoes for your feet put on whatever will make you ready to proclaim the gospel of peace. 16With all of these, take the shield of faith, with which you will be able to quench all the flaming arrows of the evil one. 17Take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.

18Pray in the Spirit at all times in every prayer and supplication. To that end keep alert and always persevere in supplication for all the saints. 19Pray also for me, so that when I speak, a message may be given to me to make known with boldness the mystery of the gospel, 20for which I am an ambassador in chains. Pray that I may declare it boldly, as I must speak.

  • Light a candle to remember Christ’s presence with you.
  • Sit five to fifteen minutes in silent meditation paying close attention to the deep breath.
  • As you breathe, begin to put on the armor of God.
  • First, discern what God will help you stand against.
  • Second, discern what God will help you stand for.
  • Imagine yourself putting on each piece of the armor.
  • Begin with the belt of truth.
  • Name truth.
  • Add the breastplate of righteousness.
  • Name righteousness.
  • Add the shoes that will make you ready to proclaim the gospel of peace.
  • Name the peace.
  • Take up the shield of faith.
  • Name faith.
  • Put on the helmet of salvation.
  • Name salvation.
  • Hold the sword of the Spirit.
  • Name the word of God that comes to mind.
  • Spend several minutes paying close attention to the close breath as you feel God’s armor
  • What message is God preparing you to speak boldly?
  • 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, August 26, 2018, the Twenty-First Sunday in Ordinary Time, Year B

1 Kings 8:(1,6,10-11) 22-30, 41-43
Psalm 84:1-12
Ephesians 6:10-20
John 6: 56-69

If you use these prayers in other groups, please give credit to author. Permission to use in not-for-profit settings. (c) 2018 The Rev. Dr. Lil Smith, DASD