Please accept this “general thanksgiving” from our Prayer Book. Individuals and communities should consider using it every day, not just once a year. I recommend it to you for your daily use — in all situations and circumstances.
Almighty God, the fountain of all wisdom, you know our necessities before we ask and our ignorance in asking. Have compassion on our weakness, and mercifully give us those things which for our unworthiness we dare not, and for our blindness we cannot ask; through the worthiness of your Son Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen.
Fourth Sunday of Easter
Below are the lessons for this weekend. Please also pray through the collect.
O God, whose Son Jesus is the good shepherd of your people: Grant that when we hear his voice we may know him who calls us each by name, and follow where he leads; who, with you and the Holy Spirit, lives and reigns, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.
Dominus regit me
1 The Lord is my shepherd; * I shall not want.
2 He maketh me to lie down in green pastures; *he leadeth me beside the still waters.
3 He restoreth my soul; *he leadeth me in the paths of righteousness for his Name’s sake.
4 Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil; *for thou art with me, thy rod and thy staff, they comfort me.
5 Thou preparest a table before me in the presence of mine enemies; *thou anointest my head with oil; my cup runneth over.
6 Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life, *and I will dwell in the house of the Lord for ever.
1 John 3:16-24
We know love by this, that he laid down his life for us — and we ought to lay down our lives for one another. How does God’s love abide in anyone who has the world’s goods and sees a brother or sister in need and yet refuses help?
Little children, let us love, not in word or speech, but in truth and action. And by this we will know that we are from the truth and will reassure our hearts before him whenever our hearts condemn us; for God is greater than our hearts, and he knows everything. Beloved, if our hearts do not condemn us, we have boldness before God; and we receive from him whatever we ask, because we obey his commandments and do what pleases him.
And this is his commandment, that we should believe in the name of his Son Jesus Christ and love one another, just as he has commanded us. All who obey his commandments abide in him, and he abides in them. And by this we know that he abides in us, by the Spirit that he has given us.
Jesus said, “I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd lays down his life for the sheep. The hired hand, who is not the shepherd and does not own the sheep, sees the wolf coming and leaves the sheep and runs away—and the wolf snatches them and scatters them. The hired hand runs away because a hired hand does not care for the sheep. I am the good shepherd. I know my own and my own know me, just as the Father knows me and I know the Father. And I lay down my life for the sheep. I have other sheep that do not belong to this fold. I must bring them also, and they will listen to my voice. So there will be one flock, one shepherd. For this reason the Father loves me, because I lay down my life in order to take it up again. No one takes it from me, but I lay it down of my own accord. I have power to lay it down, and I have power to take it up again. I have received this command from my Father.”