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Speaking to the Soul: Leanness of Soul

Speaking to the Soul: Leanness of Soul

Week of Proper 15, Year One

[Go to Mission St Clare for an online version of the Daily Office including today’s scripture readings.]


Today’s Readings for the Daily Office:
Psalms 106:1-18 (morning) // 106:19-48 (evening)
2 Samuel 17:24-18:8
Acts 22:30-23:11
Mark 11:12-26

Because I inhabit a culture with certain body-type preferences, I usually think leanness is a good thing.  Not so in today’s Psalm. This morning’s portion of Psalm 106 recounts the deliverance of God’s people from slavery in Egypt and their wandering in the desert, where a “craving seized them.” Possessed by a hungry desire, the people demanded a God who would satisfy their cravings.

The result? “He gave them what they asked, but sent leanness into their souls.” Probably not a great trade-off in the long run.

Where in our lives and communities do we face a similar spiritual danger? When we get what we want, do we eat away at our souls? Dreams and desires can align us with the will of God, but only through careful discernment. As we journey through today and through the wilderness of this world, we have a choice. We can simply satisfy our cravings, or we can tend to the stoutness of our souls. Often, we can’t do both.

Lora Walsh blogs about taking risks and seeking grace at A Daily Scandal. She serves as curate of Grace Episcopal Church in Siloam Springs and as director of the Ark Fellows, an Episcopal Service Corps  program sponsored by St. Paul’s in Fayetteville, Arkansas.


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