Fr. James' Lectionary

The Lectionary is both a reading program for completing all of Holy Scripture on a one year schedule, and a daily comment on a portion of the day's reading wedded to a poem to give an added perspective on the theme.

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Location: Amherst, Virginia, United States

Tuesday, July 19, 2005

Friendship in the LORD

Daily Readings
Song of Solomon 4:1-5:1 + I Samuel 23:1-28 + Daniel 3 + John 3

Quote of the Day
Saul’s son Jonathan set out and came to David at Horesh; there he strengthened his hand through the LORD. I Samuel 23:16

Daily Text: I Samuel 23:6, 11-13, 16-18, 26
6When Abiathar son of Ahimelech fled to David at Keilah, he came down with an ephod in his hand. 11And now, will Saul come down as your servant has heard? O LORD, the God of Israel, I beseech you, tell your servant." The LORD said, "He will come down." 12Then David said, "Will the men of Keilah surrender me and my men into the hand of Saul?" The LORD said, "They will surrender you." 13Then David and his men, who were about six hundred, set out and left Keilah; they wandered wherever they could go. When Saul was told that David had escaped from Keilah, he gave up the expedition. 16Saul's son Jonathan set out and came to David at Horesh; there he strengthened his hand through the LORD. 17He said to him, "Do not be afraid; for the hand of my father Saul shall not find you; you shall be king over Israel, and I shall be second to you; my father Saul also knows that this is so." 18Then the two of them made a covenant before the LORD; David remained at Horesh, and Jonathan went home. 26Saul went on one side of the mountain, and David and his men on the other side of the mountain. David was hurrying to get away from Saul, while Saul and his men were closing in on David and his men to capture them.

Lectio What one word or phrase from the Daily Text leaps out at you? ‘Comment’ below.

Friendship in the LORD
Being Robin Hood is no walk down the garden path. It is a rocky climb. Doing good and in the eyes of the law being bad is a line most men and women are never asked to negotiate. David is. There are two realities for David. Every man’s hand is against him. The men of Keilah, whose city he frees from the Philistines,will turn him over to Saul. The men of Ziph do the same. Why? Because an outlaw with 600 men to feed is in the long run a bigger liability than the goodwill and the taxes of the king—never mind how the citizens might actually feel toward the individuals involved.

The second reality is David’s access to encouragement from God through Abiathar and Jonathan. Abiathar carries the ephod and makes it available to David as desired. Jonathan brings his love and his wide-vision of the design of Adonai shared only with David. Both bring him close to the love of God. Both encourage him as he waits to ‘know what God will do for …him’ [22:3]. Such friendships are the substance of life. God grant you one; God make you one.

Meditatio What would you add to this commentary on the Daily Text? ‘Comment’ below.

Mizpah
Julia A. Baker
Go thou thy way, and I go mine;
Apart, yet not afar;
Only a thin veil hangs between
The pathways where we are.
And “God keep watch ‘tween thee and me,”
This is my prayer;
He looks thy way, He looketh mine,
And keeps us near.

I know not where thy road may lie,
Or which way mine may be;
If mine shall be through parching sands
And thine beside the sea.
Yet “God keep watch ‘tween thee and me.”
So never fear.
He holds thy hand, He claspeth mine,
And keeps us near.

Should wealth and fame perchance be thine,
And my lot lowly be;
Or you be sad and sorrowful
And glory be for me,
Yet “God keep watch ‘tween thee and me.”
Both be His care.
One arm round thee and one round me
Will keep us near.

I sigh sometimes to see thy face,
But since this may not be,
I’ll leave thee to the care of Him
Who cares for thee and me.
“I’ll have you both beneath my wings”—
This comforts, dear,
One wing o’er thee and one o’er me,
So we are near.

And though our paths be separate
And thy way is not mine,
Yet, coming to the mercy-seat,
My soul will meet with thine.
And “God keep watch ‘tween thee and me”
I’ll whisper here;
He blesseth thee, He blesseth me,
And we are near.
404II:111

(Alternative poem? Include under ‘comment’ below.)

Oratio Conspire to respond with an act of kindness for someone you encounter today. Make it loving, low key and low risk. Hold a door, clean a car, give a flower, notice the unnoticed, make Christ’s love real. Write your experience below under ‘Comment.’

Contemplatio Enjoy what God is doing through you.

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