From the Secret Place

Friday, February 14
Matthew 6:1–15

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Clear, straightforward instructions come from Jesus about the dispositions of the heart when we do good deeds, and how the heart itself is to be transformed by prayer. Jesus’ instruction about prayer is a blend of two inseparable aspects. Each person is encouraged to go alone to the inner, secret place of one’s spirit. There is an inward privacy to prayer. However, as The Lord’s Prayer reminds us, there is always a communal dimension. The prayer is “Our Father,” not “My Father.”

Lent is coming soon. What does the Lord suggest to you about growth in prayer as the dark, secret place of winter yields to the open, expansive light of the coming spring?

Ponder the parting warning of Jesus in verse 15.

The Reading for Today
Text     Audio

Bible Breaths
Father, hallowed be Your name v. 9
Will on earth as in heaven v. 10
Give this day our daily bread. v. 11
Forgive us as we forgive. v. 12

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This is the Sixth Week in Epiphany, Year A.
See “Solar and Sacred Seasons” in the menu above.
We read the Gospel of Matthew, except during Advent, the Infancy Narratives of Luke.

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2 thoughts on “From the Secret Place

  1. Today’s reading contains the Lord’s Prayer. The King James version is what is usually recited, and it is usually spoken from memory. I am disciplining myself to slow down and listen to the words in familiar scripture, creeds, hymns, etc. I have the alarm set on my phone to sound at noon everyday. (except Sunday)  That is my reminder to say the Lord’s Prayer at that moment. I heard it suggested the addition of a comma after the word “us” in, “And lead us not into temptation”. How different when we read it as “And lead us, not into temptation”.  I like the thought of asking Him to LEAD me (the comma allows a spiritual pause) 

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  2. Marilyn, I liked your image of the comma as a pause in the movement life. Commas are like glances at our slap bracelets, blending what we are doing with these prayer-phrases. Periods at the end of sentences suggest moments in the midst of a project where there is a portion of the project completed; we find a few more times to breathe, look up at the sky or sense the moment in time against the background of the quarter-part of the day. Then there are the paragraphs that come at the end of a task where real breathers can take place.

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