Monday of Pentecost 25 – Prayer of the Week

O Lord, by Your bountiful goodness release us from the bonds of our sins, which by reason of our weakness we have brought upon ourselves, that we may stand firm until the day of our Lord Jesus Christ, who lives and reigns with You and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever.

He sat in my office contrite. Or at least he looked contrite. He had made a mess of things. While his young wife was pregnant with their first child, he had an affair with a co-worker. It had been discovered. Now his wife had hired a lawyer. Consequences were about to fall heavily upon him.

We pray in this prayer that God would release us from the bonds of our sins, the sins which we have brought on ourselves because we are weak. I think of this young man sitting in my office caught in the bonds of his own sins. I could not change the fact that he had ruined something in his weakness. Neither he nor I could restore his marriage or the joy which he and his wife had felt when they discovered she was pregnant, and they would be a family of three. He was trapped in this new reality, shackled by the reality of his own betrayal.

God hears this prayer for this young man too. I had a hard time finding my own sympathy for him, but God had much love for everyone involved despite what this young man had done. God had some release right now for him. Laws and counselling, repentance and a measure of forgiveness could bring some release. He would be able to see his child. His marriage was over, but he might find joy again. Finally, however, complete freedom will only come on a day of resurrection. Some things cling tightly to us. This would cling tightly to him for the rest of his earthly life. His only hope, as is the only hope of any of us, is to cling tightly to the promises of God. God’s love and resurrection are for sinners.

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