Monday of Pentecost 13 – Prayer of the Week

Almighty God, whom to know is everlasting life, grant us to know Your Son, Jesus to be the way, the truth, and the life that we may boldly confess Him to be the Christ and steadfastly walk in the way that leads to life eternal; through the same Jesus Christ, our Lord, who lives and reigns with You and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever. There was an elephant in the room, one of those things which everyone knew about, but no one wanted to talk about. There was a lot of shame involved with what he had done. People had been hurt, but all he could really see was how much it had cost him. This preacher was contemplating how exactly to address this when a faithful woman pre-empted him. She simply and bluntly asked him to verify what she had heard. He admitted it. She assessed it, frankly. It was wrong. She redirected his feelings: Rather than feeling sorry for himself, he should feel sorry for what he had done. Finally, he needed forgiveness, not pity. The first person he should talk to is the woman whose trust he had betrayed. Then she went on being his neighbor and friend, because she did not expect perfection, just honesty. We pray that we might boldly confess Jesus to be the Christ today. All sorts of things can get in the way of that bold confession, including the desire to avoid offending someone who has done something offensive. It is appealing to take the easy road, to let the sin slide, to be quiet. One rarely gets chastised for being quiet. It might take boldness to open your mouth and confront. It might make you uncomfortable. But Jesus died for that sin which you are quietly enabling. Everyone seems to be a little stressed of late. But stress is often a moment when ears and hearts are more open to loving, honest, and forthright conversations. We all need to consider and pray about our conversations. There is a time to love someone gently and simply, without judgment or condemnation. But there is also a time to be bold and acknowledge the fact that Jesus is the way, truth, and life. He died for sinners so they would not walk in their sin anymore.

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