Sunday 18th July 2021
8th Sunday after Pentecost

2 Samuel 7:1-14a; Psalm 89:20-37; Ephesians 2:11-22; Mark 6:30-34, 53-56

(Alternatives: Jeremiah 23:1-6; Psalm 23)

An obvious workplace theme in today’s readings is the task and calling of a shepherd; this might lead to recognising and celebrating those who work in similar professions today - livestock farmers, vets, breeders etc. We might also recognise that the image of a shepherd is used to illustrate the responsibility of caring for God’s people, and so a congregation might pray for and give focus to those who work in the caring professions.

Of course the “shepherds” in view in the Old Testament readings are political figures ; this reminds us that political power is a responsibility before God - hence our regular prayers for those who hold such office. The words of Nathan to David are a reminder that every aspect of his life has been a preparation for the vocation to which God has called him; even his grand plans and building schemes will be directed by God and not human ambition. So we are reminded that our commerce and enterprise today should be engaged in pursuit of God’s purposes and not our own.