Sentence: Those who find their life will lose it, and those who lose their life for Jesus’ sake will find it. Matthew 10:39
Collect: O God, the light of the minds that know you, the life of the souls that love you, the strength of the thoughts that seek you: help us so to know you that we may truly love you, and so to love you that we may fully serve you, whose service is perfect freedom; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
A reading from the second book of Kings 2:1-2, 6-14
1When the Lord was about to take Elijah up to heaven in a whirlwind, Elijah and Elisha were on their way from Gilgal. 2Elijah said to Elisha, ‘Stay here; the Lord has sent me to Bethel.’ But Elisha said, ‘As surely as the Lord lives and as you live, I will not leave you.’ So they went down to Bethel. … 6Then Elijah said to him, ‘Stay here; the Lord has sent me to the Jordan.’ And he replied, ‘As surely as the Lord lives and as you live, I will not leave you.’ So the two of them walked on. 7Fifty men from the company of the prophets went and stood at a distance, facing the place where Elijah and Elisha had stopped at the Jordan. 8Elijah took his cloak, rolled it up and struck the water with it. The water divided to the right and to the left, and the two of them crossed over on dry ground. 9When they had crossed, Elijah said to Elisha, ‘Tell me, what can I do for you before I am taken from you?’ ‘Let me inherit a double portion of your spirit,’ Elisha replied. 10‘You have asked a difficult thing,’ Elijah said, ‘yet if you see me when I am taken from you, it will be yours – otherwise, it will not.’ 11As they were walking along and talking together, suddenly a chariot of fire and horses of fire appeared and separated the two of them, and Elijah went up to heaven in a whirlwind. 12Elisha saw this and cried out, ‘My father! My father! The chariots and horsemen of Israel!’ And Elisha saw him no more. Then he took hold of his garment and tore it in two. 13Elisha then picked up Elijah’s cloak that had fallen from him and went back and stood on the bank of the Jordan. 14He took the cloak that had fallen from Elijah and struck the water with it. ‘Where now is the Lord , the God of Elijah?’ he asked. When he struck the water, it divided to the right and to the left, and he crossed over.
****** Psalm 77:1-2, 11-20 (page 300) ******
A reading from Paul’s letter to the Galatians 5:1, 13-25
1It is for freedom that Christ has set us free. Stand firm, then, and do not let yourselves be burdened again by a yoke of slavery. … 13You, my brothers and sisters, were called to be free. But do not use your freedom to indulge the flesh; rather, serve one another humbly in love. 14For the entire law is fulfilled in keeping this one command: ‘Love your neighbour as yourself.’ 15If you bite and devour each other, watch out or you will be destroyed by each other. 16So I say, live by the Spirit, and you will not gratify the desires of the flesh. 17For the flesh desires what is contrary to the Spirit, and the Spirit what is contrary to the flesh. They are in conflict with each other, so that you are not to do whatever you want. 18But if you are led by the Spirit, you are not under the law. 19The acts of the flesh are obvious: sexual immorality, impurity and debauchery; 20idolatry and witchcraft; hatred, discord, jealousy, fits of rage, selfish ambition, dissensions, factions 21and envy; drunkenness, orgies, and the like. I warn you, as I did before, that those who live like this will not inherit the kingdom of God. 22But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law. 24Those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires. 25Since we live by the Spirit, let us keep in step with the Spirit.
The Gospel according to St Luke, Chapter 9: 51-62
51As the time approached for him to be taken up to heaven, Jesus resolutely set out for Jerusalem. 52And he sent messengers on ahead, who went into a Samaritan village to get things ready for him; 53but the people there did not welcome him, because he was heading for Jerusalem. 54When the disciples James and John saw this, they asked, ‘Lord, do you want us to call fire down from heaven to destroy them?’ 55But Jesus turned and rebuked them. 56Then he and his disciples went to another village. 57As they were walking along the road, a man said to him, ‘I will follow you wherever you go.’ 58Jesus replied, ‘Foxes have dens and birds have nests, but the Son of Man has nowhere to lay his head.’ 59He said to another man, ‘Follow me.’ But he replied, ‘Lord, first let me go and bury my father.’ 60Jesus said to him, ‘Let the dead bury their own dead, but you go and proclaim the kingdom of God.’ 61Still another said, ‘I will follow you, Lord; but first let me go back and say goodbye to my family.’ 62Jesus replied, ‘No one who puts a hand to the plough and looks back is fit for service in the kingdom of God.