30They went on from there and passed through Galilee. He did not want anyone to know it; 31for he was teaching his disciples, saying to them, “The Son of Man is to be betrayed into human hands, and they will kill him, and three days after being killed, he will rise again.” 32But they did not understand what he was saying and were afraid to ask him.
33Then they came to Capernaum; and when he was in the house he asked them, “What were you arguing about on the way?” 34But they were silent, for on the way they had argued with one another who was the greatest. 35He sat down, called the twelve, and said to them, “Whoever wants to be first must be last of all and servant of all.” 36Then he took a little child and put it among them; and taking it in his arms, he said to them, 37“Whoever welcomes one such child in my name welcomes me, and whoever welcomes me welcomes not me but the one who sent me.”
- Light a candle to remember Christ’s presence with you.
- Sit five to fifteen minutes in silent meditation paying close attention to the deep breath.
- As you pay attention to the breath, consider one of Christ’s lessons in your life that you do not understand. Perhaps you are even afraid to ask Christ, “Why?”
- What argument keeps playing in your mind and heart?
- Hear Christ say these words to you, “Whoever wants to be first must be last of all and servant of all.”
- Let these words enter the place(s) of not understanding.
- To be “for” Christ is to hold lightly these places we do not understand until the lesson becomes clear.
- Allow Christ to hold you like a child in Christ’s arms. Hear these words, “Whoever welcomes one such child in my name welcomes me, and whoever welcomes me welcomes not me but the one who sent me.”
- Who has welcomed you in the name of Christ?
- Who have you welcomed in the name of Christ?
- Hold the questions lightly as you are held in the arms of God.
- What is God’s message for you?
- Give thanks to God for this time in prayer and for any new insight you have received.
- Share as you feel led in the reply box below.
Revised Common Lectionary Readings for Sunday, September 23, 2012, the Twenty-Fifth Sunday in Ordinary Time, Year B
James 3:13-4:3, 7-8a
If you use these prayers in other groups, please give credit to author. Permission to use in not-for-profit settings The Rev. Lil Smith, M.Div., DASD