The Prayer of the Righteous

This meditation is based on a passage for November 20, 2010 in the Daily Lectionary Year 2 from the Book of Common Worship for the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) (1993).

Text: James 5:13-20

Reflection and Question: James is as controversial as ever in these closing verses of the letter. For me, it is thought provoking to hear him declare that “The prayer of the righteous is powerful and effective.” This suggests that we have an ability to influence God’s will – an idea that disturbs me even though yesterday I embraced Jesus’ encouragement to us to persist like the irritating widow to knock on God’s door for the justice we want. This is a paradox. God will do what God chooses regardless of our prayers and yet God listens and responds to our prayers. How does prayer save the sick?

Prayer: Blessed Holy Spirit, help us to pray the prayers of the righteous, sinners that we are. There is so much suffering and sickness around us and in us. We want our prayers to be effective and powerful. Especially bless our songs of praise. Amen.