Reflecting on the Tenth
Sunday after Pentecost
Year A

Daily Readings for Wednesday
August 12, 2020

Prayer

Through the storms of life, O God, 

you are with your people 

in the person of Jesus your Son. 

Calm our fears and strengthen our faith 

that we may never doubt his presence among us 

but proclaim that he is your Son, 

risen from the dead, 

living for ever and ever. Amen.

 

Psalm 28

God hears my pleadings

 

To you, O Lord, I call;

my rock, do not refuse to hear me,

for if you are silent to me,

I shall be like those who go down to the Pit.

Hear the voice of my supplication,

as I cry to you for help,

as I lift up my hands

toward your most holy sanctuary.

Do not drag me away with the wicked,

with those who are workers of evil,

who speak peace with their neighbors,

while mischief is in their hearts.

Repay them according to their work,

and according to the evil of their deeds;

repay them according to the work of their hands;

render them their due reward.

Because they do not regard the works of the Lord,

or the work of his hands,

he will break them down and build them up no more.

Blessed be the Lord,

for he has heard the sound of my pleadings.

The Lord is my strength and my shield;

in him my heart trusts;

so I am helped, and my heart exults,

and with my song I give thanks to him.

The Lord is the strength of his people;

he is the saving refuge of his anointed.

O save your people, and bless your heritage;

be their shepherd, and carry them forever.

 

Genesis 40:1-23

The dreams of two prisoners

 

Some time after this, the cupbearer of the king of Egypt and his baker offended their lord the king of Egypt. Pharaoh was angry with his two officers, the chief cupbearer and the chief baker, and he put them in custody in the house of the captain of the guard, in the prison where Joseph was confined. The captain of the guard charged Joseph with them, and he waited on them; and they continued for some time in custody. One night they both dreamed—the cupbearer and the baker of the king of Egypt, who were confined in the prison—each his own dream, and each dream with its own meaning. When Joseph came to them in the morning, he saw that they were troubled. So he asked Pharaoh’s officers, who were with him in custody in his master’s house, “Why are your faces downcast today?” They said to him, “We have had dreams, and there is no one to interpret them.” And Joseph said to them, “Do not interpretations belong to God? Please tell them to me.”

 

So the chief cupbearer told his dream to Joseph, and said to him, “In my dream there was a vine before me, and on the vine there were three branches. As soon as it budded, its blossoms came out and the clusters ripened into grapes. Pharaoh’s cup was in my hand; and I took the grapes and pressed them into Pharaoh’s cup, and placed the cup in Pharaoh’s hand.” Then Joseph said to him, “This is its interpretation: the three branches are three days; within three days Pharaoh will lift up your head and restore you to your office; and you shall place Pharaoh’s cup in his hand, just as you used to do when you were his cupbearer. But remember me when it is well with you; please do me the kindness to make mention of me to Pharaoh, and so get me out of this place. For in fact I was stolen out of the land of the Hebrews; and here also I have done nothing that they should have put me into the dungeon.”

 

When the chief baker saw that the interpretation was favorable, he said to Joseph, “I also had a dream: there were three cake baskets on my head, and in the uppermost basket there were all sorts of baked food for Pharaoh, but the birds were eating it out of the basket on my head.” And Joseph answered, “This is its interpretation: the three baskets are three days; within three days Pharaoh will lift up your head—from you!—and hang you on a pole; and the birds will eat the flesh from you.”

 

On the third day, which was Pharaoh’s birthday, he made a feast for all his servants, and lifted up the head of the chief cupbearer and the head of the chief baker among his servants. He restored the chief cupbearer to his cupbearing, and he placed the cup in Pharaoh’s hand; but the chief baker he hanged, just as Joseph had interpreted to them. Yet the chief cupbearer did not remember Joseph, but forgot him.

 

Matthew 8:23-27

Jesus stills the storm

 

And when he got into the boat, his disciples followed him. A windstorm arose on the sea, so great that the boat was being swamped by the waves; but he was asleep. And they went and woke him up, saying, “Lord, save us! We are perishing!” And he said to them, “Why are you afraid, you of little faith?” Then he got up and rebuked the winds and the sea; and there was a dead calm. They were amazed, saying, “What sort of man is this, that even the winds and the sea obey him?”

 

 

Prayer

God of awe, from whom we flee in holy terror: 

your silence burns like ice; 

your whisper cuts through fear; 

we long to hear your faithful word 

of righteousness and peace. 

Bless us with bold belief 

even in the darkness of the night 

and the assault of life’s storms, 

that we may be messengers of your justice, 

in the name of the One whom wind and wave obey. Amen.

 

Psalm 18:1-19

God saves from the waters

 

I love you, O Lord, my strength.

The Lord is my rock, my fortress, and my deliverer,

my God, my rock in whom I take refuge,

my shield, and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold.

I call upon the Lord, who is worthy to be praised,

so I shall be saved from my enemies.

The cords of death encompassed me;

the torrents of perdition assailed me;

the cords of Sheol entangled me;

the snares of death confronted me.

In my distress I called upon the Lord;

to my God I cried for help.

From his temple he heard my voice,

and my cry to him reached his ears.

Then the earth reeled and rocked;

the foundations also of the mountains trembled

and quaked, because he was angry.

Smoke went up from his nostrils,

and devouring fire from his mouth;

glowing coals flamed forth from him.

He bowed the heavens, and came down;

thick darkness was under his feet.

He rode on a cherub, and flew;

he came swiftly upon the wings of the wind.

He made darkness his covering around him,

his canopy thick clouds dark with water.

Out of the brightness before him

there broke through his clouds

hailstones and coals of fire.

The Lord also thundered in the heavens,

and the Most High uttered his voice.

And he sent out his arrows, and scattered them;

he flashed forth lightnings, and routed them.

Then the channels of the sea were seen,

and the foundations of the world were laid bare

at your rebuke, O Lord,

at the blast of the breath of your nostrils.

He reached down from on high, he took me;

he drew me out of mighty waters.

He delivered me from my strong enemy,

and from those who hated me;

for they were too mighty for me.

They confronted me in the day of my calamity;

but the Lord was my support.

He brought me out into a broad place;

he delivered me, because he delighted in me.

 

Job 36:24-33; 37:14-24

The waters of God’s creation

 

“Remember to extol his work,

of which mortals have sung.

All people have looked on it;

everyone watches it from far away.

Surely God is great, and we do not know him;

the number of his years is unsearchable.

For he draws up the drops of water;

he distills his mist in rain,

which the skies pour down

and drop upon mortals abundantly.

Can anyone understand the spreading of the clouds,

the thunderings of his pavilion?

See, he scatters his lightning around him

and covers the roots of the sea.

For by these he governs peoples;

he gives food in abundance.

He covers his hands with the lightning,

and commands it to strike the mark.

Its crashing tells about him;

he is jealous with anger against iniquity.

Hear this, O Job;

stop and consider the wondrous works of God.

Do you know how God lays his command upon them,

and causes the lightning of his cloud to shine?

Do you know the balancings of the clouds,

the wondrous works of the one whose knowledge is perfect,

you whose garments are hot

when the earth is still because of the south wind?

Can you, like him, spread out the skies,

hard as a molten mirror?

Teach us what we shall say to him;

we cannot draw up our case because of darkness.

Should he be told that I want to speak?

Did anyone ever wish to be swallowed up?

Now, no one can look on the light

when it is bright in the skies,

when the wind has passed and cleared them.

Out of the north comes golden splendor;

around God is awesome majesty.

The Almighty—we cannot find him;

he is great in power and justice,

and abundant righteousness he will not violate.

Therefore mortals fear him;

he does not regard any who are wise in their own conceit.”

 

Matthew 8:23-27

Jesus stills the storm

 

And when he got into the boat, his disciples followed him. A windstorm arose on the sea, so great that the boat was being swamped by the waves; but he was asleep. And they went and woke him up, saying, “Lord, save us! We are perishing!” And he said to them, “Why are you afraid, you of little faith?” Then he got up and rebuked the winds and the sea; and there was a dead calm. They were amazed, saying, “What sort of man is this, that even the winds and the sea obey him?”

 

 

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Prayer reprinted from Revised Common Lectionary Prayers, © 2002 Consultation on Common Texts. Reproduced by permission.

Revised Common Lectionary Daily Readings copyright © 2005 Consultation on Common Texts admin. Augsburg Fortress. Reproduced by permission. No further reproduction allowed without the written permission of Augsburg Fortress.

New Revised Standard Version Bible, copyright © 1989 National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved.