March 27, 2024

Today’s scripture and reflection

Gracious and Loving God,

We read in the Scriptures that even those who knew you personally, sat beside you at meals, and heard you teach regularly couldn’t help themselves but betray you. Even the ones whom you named as your disciples denied you. As we read these passages, at first blush, we are perplexed and horrified that persons who professed to love you, whom you considered your disciples, could act so shamefully, so selfishly, and so dishonestly. We rush to judge their behavior. We consider them to be the ultimate sinners.

Gracious and Loving God,

As we confess to you our horror and condemnation of the disciples of Jesus on his last night with them – we pause, we reflect, we ponder. We realize our behavior is, in fact, more like the disciples who disappointed Jesus than we’d like to admit. We say that we are following in Jesus’s footsteps, only to deny his teachings, stomping on people instead of caring for them, blazing ego-driven, self-serving paths that tout and glorify us, not you. Are we betrayers? Are we deniers? Are we, in fact, deeply flawed sinners as well?

Gracious and Loving God,

You know the answers to our questions, and if we are honest, we do, too. So, each day, we ask for your mercy and your forgiveness. We want and can do better. Deliver us, Oh God. We are running toward you: We are seeking you: We are needing you. Desperately, we long for your saving help and gracious love. We give thanks that while sin so easily entangles us, you push us to run with perseverance the race of lives that purposefully honor your will. May we always fix our eyes upon you who scorned shame and endured the cross, bringing mercy, hope and salvation for us all.

In Your Holy Name We Pray, Amen.

Rev. Mace Hall