In tomorrow's reading from Luke's gospel, the apostles say to the Lord: Increase our faith.
Have you ever felt stalled in your faith? Do you wonder how you get faith, how you attain it? How much is enough? Is more more?
Take a few moments before tomorrow to read ahead. While the appointed gospel text is Luke 17:5-10, begin with the first verse of that chapter and read about forgiveness. Allow the text to agitate you. Permit questions to come to the surface of your heart and mind. In so doing, may we all remain open to hearing the Word tomorrow with desire and openness. Remember, don't be afraid. As the apostle Paul reminds us in Ephesians 3, the power at work within us is able to accomplish abundantly far more than all we can ask or imagine.
Twentieth Sunday after Pentecost
October 2, 2016
Prayer of the Day
Benevolent, merciful God: When we are empty, fill us. When we are weak in faith, strengthen us. When we are cold in love, warm us, that with fervor we may love our neighbors and serve them for the sake of your Son, Jesus Christ, our Savior and Lord.
Habakkuk 1:1-14, 2:1-4
2 Timothy 1:1-14
1Jesus said to his disciples, "Occasions for stumbling are bound to come, but woe to anyone by whom they come! 2It would be better for you if a millstone were hung around your neck and you were thrown into the sea than for you to cause one of these little ones to stumble. 3Be on your guard! If another disciple sins, you must rebuke the offender, and if there is repentance, you must forgive. 4And if the same person sins against you seven times a day, and turns back to you seven times and says, 'I repent,' you must forgive."
5The apostles said to the Lord, "Increase our faith!" 6The Lord replied, "If you had faith the size of a mustard seed, you could say to this mulberry tree, 'Be uprooted and planted in the sea,' and it would obey you.
7Who among you would say to your slave who has just come in from plowing or tending sheep in the field, 'Come here at once and take your place at the table'? 8Would you not rather say to him, 'Prepare supper for me, put on your apron and serve me while I eat and drink; later you may eat and drink'? 9Do you thank the slave for doing what was commanded? 10So you also, when you have done all that you were ordered to do, say, 'We are worthless slaves; we have done only what we ought to have done!'"
(Luke 17:1-10 NRSV)