Forgiveness

Isaiah 58:1-7

58 Shout out loud! Don’t hold back!
Raise your voice like a shofar!
Proclaim to my people what rebels they are,
to the house of Ya‘akov their sins.
2 “Oh yes, they seek me day after day
and [claim to] delight in knowing my ways.
As if they were an upright nation
that had not abandoned the rulings of their God,
they ask me for just rulings
and [claim] to take pleasure in closeness to God,
3 [asking,] ‘Why should we fast, if you don’t see?
Why mortify ourselves, if you don’t notice?’
“Here is my answer: when you fast,
you go about doing whatever you like,
while keeping your laborers hard at work.
4 Your fasts lead to quarreling and fighting,
to lashing out with violent blows.
On a day like today, fasting like yours
will not make your voice heard on high.
5 “Is this the sort of fast I want,
a day when a person mortifies himself?
Is the object to hang your head like a reed
and spread sackcloth and ashes under yourself?
Is this what you call a fast,
a day that pleases Adonai?
6 “Here is the sort of fast I want —
releasing those unjustly bound,
untying the thongs of the yoke,
letting the oppressed go free,
breaking every yoke,
7 sharing your food with the hungry,
taking the homeless poor into your house,
clothing the naked when you see them,
fulfilling your duty to your kinsmen!”

Dear God forgive myself and my nation when we rely on the government to take care of our poor instead of us, when we ignor family for profit, and when we give lip service to You. Abba stir within us a desire to come back to You, take us once more under your wing as we seek to heal the broken around us Amen.

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