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Students sitting outside Bockman
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Tuesday, November 05, 2019

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Whether we want to admit it or not, the saying "The grass is greener on the other side of the fence" describes the way we so often compare ourselves with our neighbors. In my conversations with family and friends, I have asked and heard the questions, "Why is that person getting that promotion and not me? Why is that person better off than me? Don't I deserve your blessing too, Lord, since I am more righteous and just than they are?"

Our sinfulness and selfishness are revealed in our prayers. We think we deserve God's blessings because of our good intentions and actions. But God does not promise to hear and answer our prayers based on how well we have behaved. God hears our prayers, even when they are selfish, and acts according to God's persistent good will and mercy. So we continue to pray the Lord's Prayer, trusting in the God who gives us faith through Christ to trust that God's promises are for us, even when we sometimes pray selfishly.

Faithful God, empower me to trust in you, that I may pray for your will to be done in my life and may know that in your mercy you see to it that I have everything I need. Amen.

Horacio Castillo Echeverria, '16
Pastor, Faculty Member at St. Paul Lutheran Seminary, St. Paul, Minn.

Psalm 17:1-9 (NRSV)

1 Hear a just cause, O Lord; attend to my cry; give ear to my prayer from lips free of deceit.
2 From you let my vindication come; let your eyes see the right.
3 If you try my heart, if you visit me by night, if you test me, you will find no wickedness in me; my mouth does not transgress.
4 As for what others do, by the word of your lips I have avoided the ways of the violent.
5 My steps have held fast to your paths; my feet have not slipped.
6 I call upon you, for you will answer me, O God; incline your ear to me, hear my words.
7 Wondrously show your steadfast love, O savior of those who seek refuge from their adversaries at your right hand.
8 Guard me as the apple of the eye; hide me in the shadow of your wings,
9 from the wicked who despoil me, my deadly enemies who surround me.

This God Pause daily devotion is brought to you by the alumni of Luther Seminary.