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Tuesday prayers - 2007

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February 2007

Tuesday 20th February and Saturday 24th February 2007

‘Why have we fasted,’ they say,
and you have not seen it?
Yet on the day of your fasting, you do as you please
and exploit all your workers.
Your fasting ends in quarrelling and strife,
and in striking each other with wicked fists.
You cannot fast as you do today
and expect your voice to be heard on high.
Is this the kind of fast I have chosen,
only a day for a man to humble himself?
“Is not this the kind of fasting I have chosen:
to loose the chains of injustice
and untie the cords of the yoke,
to set the oppressed free
and break every yoke?
Is it not to share your food with the hungry
and to provide the poor wanderer with shelter
when you see the naked, to clothe him,
and not to turn away from your own flesh and blood?
Then your light will break forth like the dawn,
and your healing will quickly appear.
If you do away with the pointing finger and malicious talk,
and if you spend yourselves on behalf of the hungry
and satisfy the needs of the oppressed,
then your light will rise in the darkness,
and your night will become like the noonday.

(Isaiah 58: 3-12)


Prayer

If I criticize people,
I have no time to love them.
If I see the negative of what is around me,
I have no time to admire the positive.
If I use all my energies to provide bread for the hungry,
I have no time for their hunger of love.
If I spend all my time to pray to Jesus,
I have no time to serve him in the little ones.
If I exhaust my life in the service of my brother,
I have no time to entrust him to Jesus.
If I aim only at achievement and success,
I have no time to enjoy and to smile.
If I force my opinion to prevail,
I have no time to discover the truth.
If I refuse to be corrected,
I have no time to improve.
If I do not forgive,
I have no time to enjoy the beauty of love.
If I have to prove myself and my capacities,
I have no time to appreciate the others.
If I reject that irritating person near me,
I have no time to welcome Jesus.
If I do not accept my own weaknesses,
I have no time, no patience and no mercy for anyone.


Tuesday 6thFebruary and Saturday 10th February 2007

But now, this is what the Lord says,
he who created you, O Jacob,
he who formed you, O Israel:
“Fear not, for I have redeemed you;
I have summoned you by name; you are mine.
When you pass through the waters, I will be with you;
and when you pass through the rivers,
they will not sweep over you.
When you walk through the fire,
you will not be burned;
the flames will not set you ablaze.
For I am the LORD, your God,
the Holy One of Israel, your Saviour;
I give Egypt for your ransom,
Cush and Seba in your stead.
Since you are precious and honoured in my sight,
and because I love you,
Do not be afraid, for I am with you.

Forget the former things; do not dwell on the past.
See, I am doing a new thing!
Now it springs up; do you not perceive it?
I am making a way in the desert and streams in the wasteland.
The wild animals honour me, the jackals and the owls,
because I provide water in the desert
and streams in the wasteland,
to give drink to my people, my chosen,
the people I formed for myself
that they may proclaim my praise.

(Isaiah: 43)


Tuesday 13th February and Saturday 17th February 2007

The Spirit of the Sovereign Lord is on me,
because the Lord has anointed me
to preach good news to the poor.
He has sent me to bind up the broken-hearted,
to proclaim freedom for the captives
and release from darkness for the prisoners,
to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favour
and the day of vengeance of our God,
to comfort all who mourn,
and provide for those who grieve in Zion
to bestow on them a crown of beauty
instead of ashes, the oil of gladness
instead of mourning, and a garment of praise
instead of a spirit of despair.
They will be called oaks of righteousness,
a planting of the Lord for the display of his splendour.
They will rebuild the ancient ruins
and restore the places long devastated;
they will renew the ruined cities
that have been devastated for generations.
You will be a crown of splendour in the Lord’s hand,
a royal diadem in the hand of your God.
No longer will they call you Deserted,
or name your land Desolate.
But you will be called Hephzibah,
and your land Beulah;
for the Lord will take delight in you,
and your land will be married.
As a young man marries a maiden,
so will your sons marry you;
as a bridegroom rejoices over his bride,
so will your God rejoice over you.
They will be called the Holy People,
the Redeemed of the Lord;
and you will be called Sought After,
the City No Longer Deserted.
(Isaiah 61,62)

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