Christ The Servant Church
homily june 2013
Homily for june 02, 2013
My homily to day is about prayer however I’d first like to tell you of my favorite Apostle Peter a follower of Jesus who had all the frailties of human nature.
Peter was untruthful he told a lies three times to save his own skin. When Jesus asked to be accompanied in prayer for one hour he fell asleep. He got very angry and inflicted serious bodily harm to a fellow human being and yet after all of this Jesus still proclaimed thou art Peter and upon this rock I will build my Church and hell shall not prevail against it.
However there is a school of thought that believes Mary Magdalene had a serious input into all of this.
Was all mankind been sent a message by Jesus of tolerance and hope that if we sin even seriously God will forgive and still see the good in us?
Peter’s erring ways were not over when he got to Rome his ecumenical view of the Gentiles giving cause for upset to Paul who with all the zeal of the convert informed him this was unbecoming of his station.
The world had to wait 2,000 yrs until the arrival of John the 23rd a man with a passionate view of equality as expressed in his famous words we are all made in Gods image and thus we are all godly.
Shane Claibourne in his book Irresistible Revolution, has a quote “Wouldn’t it be great to go to a church that believes in the ordinary folks who preach a gospel that is actually good news.” I believe Shane would fit in well here, he is one of the young men we have projected here during lent and a writer with a weird and wondourful sense of humour.
Prayer is the life of the soul just as our bodies need nourishment so to do our souls and to repeat the age old saying that the power of prayer can never be quantified. The consolation in times of life’s trials the nearness to our maker in both sorrow and joy prayer is a mighty companion.
Its wonderful to see that the new Pope Francis in his first homily devoted a major part of it to prayer its noted that his frequent reference to prayer is a reflection of his deep spiritually and his Jesuit training.
The Lords Prayer
The first part is comprised of paying homage to our Creator and the remaining we ask for forgiveness and our daily bread and lead us not into temptation its worth noting when the Lords prayer is projected here every Sunday there is a space between paying homage, and our asking of God for our spiritual and temporal welfare.
Demonstrating the greatest prayer of all is made up of two parts when we say hallowed be thy name is to bring to our mind our reverence to God.
It comes very easy for us to pray when we ask for things in our life or ask for intercession this is not a bad thing as God said ask and you shall receive but we must have respect for God in our hearts.
Also if when we pray and do not have a calmness or feel we are at another level from our daily lives that we think we should, this should not be a cause of worry as we are doing our best to communicate and honour God.
To give our devotions in praise and thanks to our GOD To be in daily respectful praise of our maker if we miss a day here and there I’m sure in his all forgiving understanding we’ll be excused.
Prayer can be uplifting can be rewarding can also be a challenge, we take heart from the words of the bible where two or ‘’more ‘are gathered in my name there I am in your midst so the message is clear.
When we pray, When we cry .When we kiss we close our eyes Its because we know the most beautiful things are not seen ,but felt by the heart even if at times its a struggle to remain concentrated in prayer and to avoid as much as possible our prayer’s becoming mechanical.
A few ways to over come the problems of loss of consternation is instead of praying in silence to pray audibly or where possible to join in prayer with others also to reverse the order of our daily prayers.
However we should not be upset if our prayers lose there meaning for us occasionally as St Paul stated he sometimes forgot how to pray.
In fact a short prayer in our own words can be a more meaningful and far less mechanical than a structured prayer and give a better feeling of been in communion with God.
If we are praying for something and it seems to go unanswered let us remember it is not lost and that our God in His wisdom maybe doing us a favour and that prayer maybe diverted elsewhere.
During world war 1 a British Air Force Pilot in combat, on this mission he had taken heavy punishment from enemy fire with his comrade and aircraft badly shot up he knew it was going to take an near miracle to make it back to base.
Despite the fact that it had been many years since God was a part of his life he tried to pray the only words that came to his mind was a supplication he remembered from his Mother’s knee "My Lord and my God I place all my thrust in thee’’ just a few short words he repeated over and over it was the only attempt at prayer he could think of and added the promise if he’d make it back to base, he would return to his childhood religion.
With this short prayer and exceptional ability he succeed, afterwards in conversation with his Chaplin and feeling contrite of having lapsed from his early religion for all those years and not being able to recall a prayer his kindly Chaplin pointed out do you not realize with these words you were praying all the time.
Yes our prayers no matter how simple and short and from the heart in the example of the of the British Pilot will be heard by God.
A short homily I heard delivered one morning some years ago he said that last thing at night should be to make the sign of the cross and the first thing when we wake in the morning and that there could be no better way to stay on Gods path he may have added just a little more but its making the sign of the cross has stayed with me.
The thoughtful and well researched pamphlet by Michele, "May God bless her‘’, on seventeen of the thirty day’s of reflection for Lent that powerful word prayer is there the one I like best is forgive yourself God already has.
What a conduit we have here in this congregation to God with a truly outstanding Pastor, with a choir who renders wondourful and joyous music and all joining in truly delightful communion of uplifting homage and prayer.
In conclusion I’ll recite that short prayer if not an extension of the Lords Prayer is right next door.
Glory be to the Father onto the son onto the holy spirit as it was in the beginning is now and ever shall be world without end amen.