Genesis 18: 1-15 (21:1-7)
God appears to Abraham in the form of three visitors whom Abraham welcomes and serves. And they promise that in a year’s time, Sarah will have a son. But, when Sarah laughs in disbelief, the strangers reaffirm the promise. And then their promise is fulfilled and Sarah gives birth to a son.
Psalm 116: 1-2, 12-19
A Psalm of thanksgiving for God’s mercy and the way God hears the psalmist’s prayer. And a prayer of commitment to keep calling on God’s name and giving thanks.
God has made us right with God through Christ, given us undeserved privilege, and made it possible for us to grow in strength and endurance through times of trial. In addition, God has given God’s Spirit to fill our hearts.
Matthew 9:35-10:8 (9-23)
Jesus notes that the harvest is great but the workers are few, and then he sends his disciples out to share the message of the Gospel with the people of Israel. He instructs them not to take anything with them, but to trust in the hospitality of the people to whom they go. Then he warns them about the rejection and persecution they will endure, but that these moments will be opportunities to speak about Jesus.
(Summaries by John van de Laar, Sacredise)
Matthew 9:35-10:23: Matthew’s Missionary Commentary
in a time of confusion, you teach a daring way forward,
in the presence of despair, you proclaim good news,
in the midst of dis-ease, you bring peace and health.
in this strange and sorry season on this Earth,
we often feel like sheep without a guide.
Come near that we may
experience your compassion for your twenty-first century people,
embody your hope for our pandemic planet,
work for your vision for a world where everyone can breathe.
Cast out demons of racism and hatred.
Make us into labourers of right relationship.
Help us harvest connection and community.
Send us out to serve and support
the overwhelmed, oppressed, and under-loved,
the hurting, harassed and helpless,
the tired, troubled, and thrown to the ground.
Your way is demanding.
The cost of discipleship is high.
You ask us
to embrace simplicity,
to go into potentially unwelcoming places,
to enter into the midst of wolves.
Grant us discernment that we might be
wise as serpents and
as innocent as doves.
Grant us grace that we might be
your faithful disciples.
(Source: Diaconal Minister Ted Dodd, a Facebook post)