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Speaking to the Soul: Pleasure-Seeking

Speaking to the Soul: Pleasure-Seeking

Week of Epiphany 2, 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 38 (morning) // 119:25-48 (evening)

Isaiah 44:24-45:7

Ephesians 5:1-14

Mark 4:1-20

Our second reading today describes Christ’s self-giving love as “a fragrant offering” to God. Christ’s life was like incense in the presence of God, slowly consumed in such a way that delighted God’s senses.

This Scripture passage invites us also to “Try to find out what is pleasing to the Lord.” Of course, this particular passage doesn’t give us specific answers about what pleases the Lord. It’s much easier for the writer to identify things that we should avoid, especially “fornication and impurity of any kind, or greed.”

The emphasis on “fornication” and “greed,” which the passage mentions more than once, might give us the impression that whatever pleases us is certainly not what pleases God! But our lives of faith are not just about what we steer clear of, but about the pleasures that we seek.

The text offers us an invitation, a quest, a mystery: “Try to find out what is pleasing to the Lord.” What in our lives will God find fragrant, sweet, smooth, beautiful, and melodious today?

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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