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The Forward Day by Day Meditation for July 31, 2022

We post a Forward Day by Day Meditation for every day of the year - and we invite you to consider them and talk about them here. If you'd like to comment, you can log in to Disqus with your Facebook, Twitter, or Google account; just click "Login," or the appropriate logo below. Or, you can sign up for a Disqus account; just use the entry form below, or click the "D" logo to start the process. You can find the past week's Meditations in the box at right (or below, for mobile users), or search for previous entries on the Archives page. You can also listen to the Forward Day by Day podcast anywhere you find podcasts!

SUNDAY, July 31
[8 Pentecost/Ignatius of Loyola]

Ecclesiastes 2:21a Because sometimes one who has toiled with wisdom and knowledge and skill must leave all to be enjoyed by another who did not toil for it.

Ecclesiastes is a challenging book; this week is the only time we read it in Sunday worship. Yet perhaps strangely, it’s one of my favorites. It makes sacred space for our ambivalence and disillusionment—the kind of feelings we might be ashamed to bring to God in prayer is right there on the page. Who wants to work hard for what they can’t enjoy? Who hasn’t felt bitterness? Who hasn’t felt overwhelmed by the suffering we can see in the world?

God can handle our frustration and go with us there, but God won’t leave us there. In Luke’s Gospel, we hear that concentrating too much on what we believe we deserve throws us off course. Our view gets too narrow, and we can’t see God, others, or even ourselves clearly. To be God’s creation is to live for one another, just as Christ lived for all of us. With gratitude for our blessings now, we can try to let our love and labor generate greater life for the sake of the whole world.

MOVING FORWARD: How does the scripture speak to you today?

PRAY for the Church of the Province of West Africa

Ps 107:1-9,43 or 49:1-11 | Hosea 11:1-11 or Ecclesiastes 1:2,12-14; 2:18-23 | Colossians 3:1-11 | Luke 12:13-21



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