Prayer for the Day – Wednesday 5 August

Lord God,
your Son left the riches of heaven
and became poor for our sake:
when we prosper save us from pride,
when we are needy save us from despair,
that we may trust in you alone;
through Jesus Christ our Lord.  Amen.

James 3.4-18
Look at ships: though they are so large that it takes strong winds to drive them, yet they are guided by a very small rudder wherever the will of the pilot directs. So also the tongue is a small member, yet it boasts of great exploits.
How great a forest is set ablaze by a small fire! And the tongue is a fire. The tongue is placed among our members as a world of iniquity; it stains the whole body, sets on fire the cycle of nature, and is itself set on fire by hell.For every species of beast and bird, of reptile and sea creature, can be tamed and has been tamed by the human species, but no one can tame the tongue—a restless evil, full of deadly poison. With it we bless the Lord and Father, and with it we curse those who are made in the likeness of God. From the same mouth come blessing and cursing. My brothers and sisters, this ought not to be so. Does a spring pour forth from the same opening both fresh and brackish water? Can a fig tree, my brothers and sisters, yield olives, or a grapevine figs? No more can salt water yield fresh.
Who is wise and understanding among you? Show by your good life that your works are done with gentleness born of wisdom. But if you have bitter envy and selfish ambition in your hearts, do not be boastful and false to the truth. Such wisdom does not come down from above, but is earthly, unspiritual, devilish. For where there is envy and selfish ambition, there will also be disorder and wickedness of every kind. But the wisdom from above is first pure, then peaceable, gentle, willing to yield, full of mercy and good fruits, without a trace of partiality or hypocrisy. And a harvest of righteousness is sown in peace for those who make peace.

From Psalm 119
      Teach me, O Lord, the way of your statutes
   and I shall keep it to the end.
      Give me understanding and I shall keep your law;
   I shall keep it with my whole heart.
      Lead me in the path of your commandments,
   for therein is my delight.
      Incline my heart to your testimonies
   and not to unjust gain.
      Turn away my eyes lest they gaze on vanities;
   O give me life in your ways.
      Confirm to your servant your promise,
   which stands for all who fear you.
      Turn away the reproach which I dread,
   because your judgements are good.
      Behold, I long for your commandments;
   in your righteousness give me life.
      Let your faithful love come unto me, O Lord,
   even your salvation, according to your promise.
      Then shall I answer those who taunt me,
   for my trust is in your word.
      O take not the word of truth utterly out of my mouth,
   for my hope is in your judgements.
      So shall I always keep your law;
   I shall keep it for ever and ever.
      I will walk at liberty,
   because I study your commandments.
      I will tell of your testimonies, even before kings,
   and will not be ashamed.
      My delight shall be in your commandments,
   which I have greatly loved.
      My hands will I lift up to your commandments,
      which I love,
   and I will meditate on your statutes.