Thursday of the Thirteenth Week in Ordinary Time

First Scripture Reading
Genesis 22: 1b-19
Gospel Reading
Matthew 9: 1-8

Opening Prayer

Demanding God, sometimes You confuse us. You ask us to sacrifice and give up who and what we most cherish, just as You asked Abraham to sacrifice his only son Isaac. The journey is as painful as the outcome, Lord, because we anticipate tragic endings and get trapped in the pain. Touch the unbelieving paralysis of our spirits. Teach us to trust that while You demand much, You give even more. Keep us open to new surprises and greater wonders for those who believe, trust and sacrifice. It is so hard to let go, Lord! Sometimes the paralysis is easier. Reach out and touch us, so that we can stand and walk in faith as a sign of Your healing wholeness. Forgive all sin which separates, so that we directly trust You today!

Bless our country today as we celebrate our independence. May we seek the independence, freedom and dignity of all your people. God, bless America, land that I love!

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