Saturday, July 25, 2020

The Collect for the Seventeenth Week in Ordinary Time

O God, protector of those who hope in You, without Whom nothing has firm foundation, nothing is holy, bestow in abundance Your mercy upon us and grant that, with You as our ruler and guide, we may use the good things that pass in such a way as to hold fast even now to those that ever endure. Through our Lord Jesus Christ, Your Son, Who lives and reigns with You in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever.

protector – None of us realizes exactly how much God protects us. We don't see all the times when He has prevented something horrible from happening. We don't know all the times when our prayers or someone else's prayers have contributed to avoidance of accidents or illnesses. We don't even catch a glimpse of how God is working in the background, guarding us and guiding us at all times. Instead, we tend to focus on complaining about the “bad things” that happen to us (that God uses for our good) rather than thanking Him for the good we experience and the bad He has already prevented.

hope in YouHow is your hope? Do you expect the very best from God? That's what He wants to give us. Yes, we have to cooperate, but even when we mess up, He forgives us when we repent and turn back to Him. If your hope is shaky, ask God to increase it today. He will.

nothing has firm foundation, nothing is holy – Without God, nothing would exist. Without God, we could do nothing at all. We could never become holy without His grace. He gives us all that we have and all that we are, and “in Him we live and move and have our being” (Acts 17:28). Do we thank Him?

bestow in abundance Your mercy God, pour down Your mercy upon us, please. We sin every day. We fail to follow Your will. We give in to our disordered emotions and desires. We turn away from You. Please forgive us, heal us, and draw us back to You.

our ruler and guideOur culture often tells us that we must be independent, that we must take charge of our own lives and do what we want, that we must resist guidance from others. Of course, in our current climate, the message has changed to obeying the government without question, trusting in “experts,” and fearing everything. We must reject both of these extremes and look to God as our ruler and guide. Only He can and will lead us through this life according to His will and bring us safely home to Heaven. We must remain faithful subjects of His kingdom.

use the good things that pass – God made this world to be lived in. There are good things all around us, things in which we take pleasure, and it's okay to use and enjoy these things, even though they will someday pass away.

in such a way as to hold fast even now to those that ever endure – But when we use and enjoy passing things, we must be careful not to abuse them or to put our entire focus on them. Instead, we must use them for the glory of God. Paul says in 1 Corinthians 10:31, “So whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do everything for the glory of God.” Work for the glory of God. Play for the glory of God. Spend time with loved ones for the glory of God. Use all the gifts God has given you so that they help you grow closer to Him and progress on your journey to Heaven.

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