Podcast Worship

Prayer for Monday 25 October 2021

Listen to a service of Prayer for 25 October 2021 (Last after Trinity / DEL Week 30: Monday), including a reflection on the gospel reading


O Lord, open our lips
and our mouth shall proclaim your praise.


Merciful God,
teach us to be faithful
in change and uncertainty,
that trusting in your word
and obeying your will
we may enter the unfailing joy
of Jesus Christ our Lord.

Psalm 68.1-6, 19

Let God arise and let his enemies be scattered;
let those that hate him flee before him.

As the smoke vanishes, so may they vanish away;
as wax melts at the fire,
so let the wicked perish at the presence of God.

But let the righteous be glad and rejoice before God;
let them make merry with gladness.

Sing to God, sing praises to his name;
exalt him who rides on the clouds.
The Lord is his name; rejoice before him.

Father of the fatherless, defender of widows,
God in his holy habitation!

God gives the solitary a home
and brings forth prisoners to songs of welcome,
but the rebellious inhabit a burning desert.

God is for us the God of our salvation;
God is the Lord who can deliver from death.

Glory to the Father and to the Son
and to the Holy Spirit;
as it was in the beginning, is now
and shall be for ever. Amen.

Luke 13.10-17

Jesus was teaching in one of the synagogues on the sabbath. And just then there appeared a woman with a spirit that had crippled her for eighteen years. She was bent over and was quite unable to stand up straight. When Jesus saw her, he called her over and said, ‘Woman, you are set free from your ailment.’ When he laid his hands on her, immediately she stood up straight and began praising God. But the leader of the synagogue, indignant because Jesus had cured on the sabbath, kept saying to the crowd, ‘There are six days on which work ought to be done; come on those days and be cured, and not on the sabbath day.’ But the Lord answered him and said, ‘You hypocrites! Does not each of you on the sabbath untie his ox or his donkey from the manger, and lead it away to give it water? And ought not this woman, a daughter of Abraham whom Satan bound for eighteen long years, be set free from this bondage on the sabbath day?’ When he said this, all his opponents were put to shame; and the entire crowd was rejoicing at all the wonderful things that he was doing.


… there appeared a woman with a spirit that had crippled her for eighteen years.

There are many synonyms for the word crippled that we use in our every day lives. We speak of being broken, damaged, deformed, handicapped, harmed, impaired, mangled, marred and paralyzed. All of these words, and more, are used in our everyday language to describe reasons for our not functioning in the way we believe to be within our capability. These words are used to explain our inability to articulate our faith, to live a life of dynamic faith, to live up to the demands of our faith. When challenged on our shortcomings we say that we are crippled (or whatever word we choose) with … and we believe that everyone will understand. But … many times when we use such phrases we are actually making excuses, we are trying to explain away our hesitancy, our reluctance, our lack of faith.

We do not know the details of the woman’s illness in today’s reading, other than she had been bent double for eighteen years. However, we do know the effect of Jesus’ healing touch in her life: she stood up straight and began praising God. Surely, this was a cause for great celebration. A woman whose life had been damaged for so long was suddenly freed from all that restricted her and, there she was, praising God. If nothing else, that first reaction was worthy of great celebration. But, not from the point of view of the leader of the synagogue. Jesus had healed on the sabbath, a great sin in the eyes of the religious authorities.

Too often we are like the leader of the synagogue, we use man-made rules to restrict our work in God’s name. We pile up excuses, pretending they have some sort of spiritual authority, in order that we might not have to be faithful and active apostles of Jesus Christ. It is through such behaviours that we do not only cripple ourselves, but we also restrict others who would otherwise respond to God’s call in their lives with joy and enthusiasm.

Let us pray that we might let Christ heal us of all that holds us back from praising God through our words and deeds. Let us pray that we might not allow the ‘false’ limitations that others would impose upon us to stop us from praising God before everyone we meet. Let us pray that our joyous faith might help others to throw off all that cripples them on their journeys of faith.

Prayers of intercession

Let us pray for the Church and for the world and thank God for his healing love.

Grant that the Church, in keeping due reverence and order, may never be turned aside from works of aid and compassion. Accept her worship, and strengthen her in prayer for all who need healing in mind or body.

We pray for the world where conflict arises from small matters grown into great disputes. Give wisdom to all in authority, that they may judge with mercy, discerning the needs of those they govern.

Bless us, our families and friends, in our daily work. Be near us in times of difficulty and make us ready to help others who are in any kind of trouble.

Have mercy on the sick who have suffered for many years without relief. Give hope to the disabled, help them to fullness of life and empower those who care for them.

We remember the departed who have been freed from the trials and limitations of the body. Receive them into the new life where there is no suffering, and where the redeemed are made perfect in the divine love.

We offer our prayers in the name of Christ, who sets us free from all evil.

Prayer for the week

We thank you, Lord,
for calling us to be your witnesses:
grant us the courage and the love
to be obedient and faithful to that calling.
We pray that our lives may bear witness
to your love shown in Jesus Christ,
and that our witness may reflect your light
in the communities in which we live and work,
to the glory of your name.

The Lord’s Prayer

Our Father, who art in heaven,
hallowed be thy name;
thy kingdom come;
thy will be done;
on earth as it is in heaven.
Give us this day our daily bread.
And forgive us our trespasses,
as we forgive those who trespass against us.
And lead us not into temptation;
but deliver us from evil.
For thine is the kingdom,
the power and the glory,
for ever and ever. 

The Grace

The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ,
and the love of God,
and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit,
be with us all evermore. Amen.