Daily Prayers for March 7

Perpetua and Felicity (d. 203)

The relationship between Perpetua and Felicity began as that of a noblewoman and her servant girl. But when they embraced Christ, they became sisters in faith and ultimately co-martyrs. In 203 AD, Roman authorities arrested six Christians and condemned them to death by the sword for their refusal to renounce their faith. Among these six were twenty-two-year-old Perpetua, who had a young child, and her former slave, Felicity, who was eight months pregnant. Felicity gave birth while in prison, the night before their execution date, and her child was entrusted to a Christian -couple. Eyewitness accounts document that just before their death, the two women, now equals in Christ, embraced one another with a holy kiss.

O Lord, let my soul rise up to meet you

as the day rises to meet the sun.

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit,

as it was in the beginning, is now, and will be forever. Amen.

Come, let us sing to the Lord : let us shout for joy to the Rock of our salvation.

Song “Come, Thou Fount”

Giver of all good things : make us generous in our giving.

Psalm 37:19 22

The Lord cares for the lives of the godly : and their inheritance shall last for ever.

They shall not be ashamed in bad times : and in days of famine they shall have enough.

As for the wicked, they shall perish : and the enemies of the Lord, like the glory of the meadows, shall vanish; they shall vanish like smoke.

The wicked borrow and do not repay : but the righteous are generous in giving.

Giver of all good things : make us generous in our giving.

Genesis 46:1 – 7, 28 – 34 Mark 3:7 – 19a

Giver of all good things : make us generous in our giving.

The following account is found in The Martyrdom of Perpetua: “Perpetua followed with quick step as a true spouse of Christ, the darling of God, her brightly flashing eyes quelling the gaze of the crowd. Felicitas too, joyful because she had safely survived child-birth and was now able to participate in the contest with the wild animals, passed from one shedding of blood to another; from midwife to gladiator, about to be purified after childbirth by a second baptism.”

Prayers for Others

Our Father

Lord, you have brought us in safety to this new day. Preserve us now by your mighty power that we may not fall into sin nor be overcome by adversity, but in all that we do direct us to the fulfilling of your purpose through -Jesus Christ, our Lord. Amen.

May the peace of the Lord Christ go with you : wherever he may send you;

may he guide you through the wilderness : protect you through the storm;

may he bring you home rejoicing : at the wonders he has shown you;

may he bring you home rejoicing : once again into our doors.

Order and Spontaneity

We must be careful in all our talk about liturgical prayer not to rule out the spontaneous moves of the Spirit. Just as liturgical traditions have much to offer us by way of roots, the charismatic and Pentecostals have much to offer us in zeal and passion. Tradition and innovation go together in God’s kingdom. -Jesus was Jewish. He went to synagogue “as was his tradition” and celebrated holy days such as Passover. But -Jesus also healed on the Sabbath. -Jesus points us to a God who is able to work within institutions and order, a God who is too big to be confined. God is constantly coloring outside the lines. -Jesus challenges the structures that oppress and exclude, and busts through any traditions that put limitations on love. Love cannot be harnessed.

Liturgy is public poetry and art. You can make beautiful art by splashing paint on a wall, and you can also make art with the careful diligence of a sculptor. Both can be lovely, and both can be ugly. Both can be marketed and robbed of their original touch, and both have the potential to inspire and move -people to do something beautiful for God. So it is with worship. More important than whether something is old or new, winsome or classic is whether it is real. The Scriptures tell us to “test the spirits,” and the true test of the spirit of a thing is whether it moves us closer to God and to our suffering neighbor. Does it have fruit outside of our own good feelings? Beauty must hearken to something beyond us. It should cause us to do something beautiful for God in the world.

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