Humble DutiesNew Every Morning | September 29, 2020
[Saint Francis] used to say that they must not allow the duties of high office or the responsibility of preaching to stand in the way of holy and devout prayer, going out for alms, doing manual labor when required, and carrying out other humble duties like the rest of the Brothers, as a good example and for the good of their own and others’ souls. He said, “The Brothers under obedience are much edified when their Ministers and preachers gladly devote their time to prayer and apply themselves to humble and undistinguished tasks. Unless they do these things they cannot admonish other Brothers without embarrassment, injustice, and self-condemnation; for if we follow Christ’s example, we must act rather than teach, and our acting and teaching must go together.”
—Edited by Keith Beasley-Topliffe, Upper Room Spiritual Classics: Writings of Francis & Clare (Upper Room Books, 2017)
What humble duties remind you of Christ’s example of service? Join the conversation.
But someone will say, “You have faith and I have works.” Show me your faith apart from your works, and I by my works will show you my faith.
—James 2:18 (NRSV)
Prayer for the Week
Lord, make me an instrument of your peace
Where there is hatred, let me sow love
Where there is injury, pardon
Where there is doubt, faith
Where there is despair, hope
Where there is darkness, light
And where there is sadness, joy.
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(Courtesy of Vanderbilt Divinity Library)
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His washing the disciples feet comes to mind. And, of course, His ultimate sacrifice on the cross and all the humiliation leading to Golgotha. Earlier this morning I was reading the passage in James, where the writer was talking about faith and works. And how the action of works does not secure our faith, but rather demonstrates the depth of and commitment to our faith. The reading above seemed a bit parallel to this.
Hoping to hear good news regarding Tazzie, from Julie. Continued prayers for David and his strength and endurance, and for wisdom moving forward for Ally with her business.
The examples Jill gives were my first thoughts as well. Jesus endured. His life was threatened soon after birth and those in leadership positions of the faith were out to find fault and ultimately death for Him.
Recently looked at the book of James, especially faith and works. I like Jill’s wording of the relationship between faith and works. “The action of works does not secure our faith, but rather demonstrates the depth of and commitment to our faith.” Yes it relates to today’s reflection and I think goes beyond church leadership to government, business, and education as well as any activity where leaders are involved.
Thankful the irksome, troublesome computer issues of yesterday have been resolved. Communication whether with God or anyone else is vital,
Prayers for Tazzie, Julie and Megan. Glad to know Roxy’s name and thankful for her help to Marcy. Prayers for progress with Marcy’s health and well-being issues.Grab irons being installed on the CV caboose. They helped ensure life on the railroad. Thankful and hopeful for Ally and David. Yes, I too pray for the UMC. Don’t want a split, I am very much in favor of what I think Jesus wants, inclusion. Love for all God’s children, no exclusions. We are all sinners and without God’s love, mercy, and grace we are doomed. With Jesus’ redemption we can stand blameless before God. How amazing is that! Thank You, Lord.
So, I feel that I should find new examples. Jesus lived his entire life doing humble works. He healed and taught and met people where they lived and where they were in understanding. I think also of the humble work we and others do each day. The cooking, cleaning and taking care of those unable to care for themselves and see the parallel with Jesus providing food and wine for the hungry, cleansing souls with baptism and bodies of afflictions and caring for those that weren’t capable of fully understanding his teachings.
Prayers for Jill and her continued learning through Bible studay.
Prayers for Robert and the joy he receives through his models.
Prayers for Ally and David. Thank you for the information about your kitties treatments. May David’s health improve and may Ally stay safe as she drives with diminished eyesight.
Prayers for Marcy, Roxy and may both stay well and free of the coronavirus.
Tazzie saw the vet and is now taking antibiotics and also has eye drops to help with the discharge. Thank you for your prayers and concern. I pray that this will heal him. Perhaps, Ally, you should give your kitties Lysine supplements. My vet presribed this first for Tazzie and I intend to keep giving them to him and the kittens in the hope of preventing further URIs. But check with your vet first. I see the dermatologist today.
Prayers, thank you and be well UR
These last 2 weeks of work have been stressful due to extra duties for my department. Some of these are rather tedious. I suppose these could fall under the category of humble duties. Christ engaged in humble tasks and in the demeaning task of death on a cross for our justification. I am afraid that I haven’t been very gracious about the changes at work. I do grasp the concept of holy work. Perhaps these tasks I find so tedious will become less so if my attitude changes. Lord, help me to accomplish what You put before me.
David reported that today he feel better. No shortness of breath. He did some laundry this morning. Thankful he felt well enough,m but I cautioned him not to overdo. I am thankful for each baby step.
Jill, I love your statement about faith and its relationship with works. Great commentary on the scripture from James. Thanks for your prayers for us. Robert, thanks so much for your statement about the UMC. It reflects my feelings exactly. I to am for full inclusion, reflecting God’s love for all of us. God still has holy work for us in the UMC. Jill, thankful that Tazzie is hopefully on the mend. I did some reading on Lysine and can help build up the immune system. May be just what my boys need. Waiting for a call from our vet., I’m sure she will ok its use. Hope you get a clean report from the dermatologist.Marcy, I too pray that you progress and that you and Roxy stay well. I hope your kitty is well. I am so thankful for this forum in these uncertain time. Interacting with you and meditating on the readings and scriptures is a lifeline. I feel disconnected at times and just want things to be normal again. Thank You Lord, for family, for friends, and for ways to connect to You and each other. Amen and Amen.