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ESV: Book of Common Prayer Daily Office Lectionary

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Yarnspinner

barefootpoet - I don't know why except that it's very easy to talk a good game, to prate on about our Family Values and our Morals. Living them - that's hard. That requires constant self-examination, constant questioning of our own motives, constant surrender to God to direct us in the path He desires and constant surrender of our own preferences.

It isn't easy, it isn't comfortable. It most certainly isn't safe. Just try getting between the wealthy and their pursuit of more, and see what it gets you. Just try getting between the powerful and their exercise of power.

There is a good and sound reason that the Romans thought what they were doing on Good Friday was sending an object lesson to anybody who might be minded to follow this crazy prophet. "This is what happens to people like this," they were saying - and it is still true.

Nobody gets killed putting up fancy monuments. Nobody gets killed defending them. Given how our Leader lived out his call, perhaps that very safety should serve us as a warning?

Lorna

often we make idols out of scripture or liturgy .. instead of making them work as ways to get closer to Jesus.

ash

Consumerist... bad spelling mistake.

ash

the last two are obscured by the flag. The one most pertinent to a court-room, and the one about not coveting thy neighbour's stuff.

Apt, actually, that the flag and symbol of the greatest Consunmerist nation should seek to block from us such good counsel...

barefootpoet

You are right on the mark here, bro. I'm as interested in anyone else in being sure that we are all treated fairly under the law, Christian, Muslim, Atheist, whatever, but he underlying sense that this is important to the moral sense and stability of a town, city, state, or nation is crazy. We'd rather kick and scream about a monument being erected than kick and scream about the poor and homeless. How is it that this stuff so easily deters us from any genuine Kingdom work?

Anglican

Excellent points, Karen. We of liturgical traditions can get wrapped up in this just as easily as anyone. I've always liked the Prayer Book's definition of sacraments--"outward and visible signs of inward and spiritual grace"--and wish we would remember it more often. Moreover, "God does not limit himself to these rites; they are patterns of countless ways by which God uses material things to reach out to us."

Rachel

My dad was a stone cutter for nearly 40 years and the one question people always seemed to ask was 'what if you make a mistake?'

I'll have to forward this to him.

And yes, I have been exasperated by the bru ha ha around stuff like this too. In my neck of the woods, the Christian radio station harps on it endlessly, always demonizing the 'liberals' in the process. It bugs me know end, because it always seems to miss the real point.

Yarnspinner

Yeah, it's always struck me as a little sad that folk can't see that you can make an idol even out of something that might be inherently good.

Good liturgy is a marvelous thing - until the day comes that you realize to some extent you've been worshipping the liturgy and not God. The Bible is an excellent thing - until you put it on a pedestal and worship it instead of God to whom it points.

It's like the Buddhist saying, about mistaking the finger pointing to the moon, for the moon itself.

Over and over and over, we mistake the pointers for the things to which they point...which is very much what Jesus was getting at, when he railed against the Pharisees for tithing mint and dill and cumin, while widows and orphans starved in the streets unattended.

Stephen

Very timely post. I think it is a sad state we live in when people spend more time trying to "get prayer back in schools" than they do praying. When they spend more effort in trying to outlaw abortion than they spend living pure lives. We always think that another law or momument will "make us a Christian nation." We put more effort into the polotical structure of America than we do trying to turning the hearts of people to God.

good post, thanks for your thoughts.

Streak

number two still jumps out at me. you know, the one about not making graven images.

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