Thursday, September 24, 2009

James 5:13-20

Pentecost +17 – Year B

James 5:13-20

Let’s follow some parallels. Sufferers pray. Elders pray. Elders are sufferers – thus the reality of wounded healers.

Prayer of sufferers segues into prayer of faith or praise.

We started with sufferers praying for themselves and the cause/healing of their sufferings. We come full circle with a prayer of life binding sufferers and non-sufferers together with the cheerful and non-cheerful.

Prayer is also paralleled with praise and so we can hear a background of life that leads us to confess our suffering by and praise of one another. This is a community builder that is much healthier than catching another in their sin and praising ourselves for praying them into submission.

It is all too easy to see ourselves as modern-day Elijah’s able to pray consequences into people’s lives. As prayers we tend to see ourselves powerfully and effectively righteous. Praying through suffering and praising the possibilities of others is a good antidote to righteous pride.

Prayer and praise circle a tree of life so fast they merge into one another – yin and yang. Welcome to the joyful chase.

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