Tuesday, December 20, 2016

Christmas Prayer 2016

God it is Christmas again.
Another year has come and gone.
Once more we join the shepherds as they flock to the stable to see the newborn baby.
Once more our eyes search the heavens for signs of angels appearing in our midst.
Or maybe the angels are standing beside us. Sharing tidings of comfort and joy.
As we stand in wonder at he Good News for all people we open ourselves to you.

God it is Christmas again.
And yet again we celebrate the birth of the Christ Child in a world where despair seems stronger than hope,
Yet again Christmas comes to shake us, to awaken the power of possibility and promise.
The local Salvation Army aims for 1200 hampers, food bank usage is up.
There are neighbours with an empty spot at the table this year.
There are neighbours who struggle with their health: physical, emotional, mental.
We search for signs of rebirth, of the time when all will live with basic needs met.
We look to the promise that in Christ we see the breaking in of your kingdom.
And until that day we live in hope.

God it is Christmas again.
For the last several week joyful songs have filled our stores, our coffee shops, our radios.
The joy of the season rings in our ears.
Sometimes Joy is hard.
Sometimes the spark of life seems to get extinguished.
This Christmas, as we tell the old story and sing the old songs.
Reawaken in us the wonder of the shepherds hearing the angel proclamation,
the wonder we see in a young child’s eyes when they see the gifts under the tree,
the joy of knowing that we are not alone, the God is with us always, in the ups and the downs of life.
Help us trust, and in that trust find joy.

God it is Christmas again.
A season of Love.
Love is the force that drives us forward.
Love is what conquers fear.
Love can lift us up, love can be the source of deep pain.
God who loves us from our beginning to long after we draw our final breath,
in this Christmas season fill our hearts with love.
In a world where we are told to be afraid, remind us of the duty to love.
And so we may share the love that shines from the manger this night.

God it is Christmas again.
Again we have heard the angel proclaim the Good News.
Again we have heard about Peace on Earth, Good will to all.
But the world around us seems not to know what peace is.
Rivalry and hatred and discord seem to win the day.
Help us respond to the Good News by becoming people of peace.
Locally and globally may we push each other to build peace.
And in doing so, live out our call to be people of love and hope and joy.
God it is Christmas again.
And we join in the celebrations.
And we marvel at the baby.
And we remember the promise.
Before the marvel of this night we stand silently.
Giving thanks,
holding those who struggle in love and prayer,
letting the glory of Christmas sink into our souls
...time of silence...
Joy to the World! The Lord is Come!
Alleluia and Amen.

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