Posts Tagged 'Advent'

Second Sunday of Christmas 2016 – John 1:14

Thursday, December 29, 2016

John 1:14And the Word became flesh and lived among us, and we have seen his glory, the glory as of a father’s only son, full of grace and truth.

God became one of us through his son Jesus.  No one understands the joy, the pain and the complexities of our individual lives more than God.  This is the awesome gift of Christmas.

Gracious God, help us accept that you know and understand our every need.  Amen.

Second Sunday after Christmas 2016 – Jeremiah 31:8

Tuesday, December 27, 2016

We are approaching the second Sunday after Christmas Day, and the lectionary offers us the following passages: Jeremiah 31:7-14; Psalm 147:12-20; Ephesians 1:3-14 and John 1:(1-9), 10-18.  Alternative selections are from the Apocrypha and include Sirach 24:1-12 and Wisdom of Solomon 10:15-21. 

Jeremiah 31:8See, I am going to bring them from the land of the north, and gather them from the farthest parts of the earth, among them the blind and the lame, those with child and those in labor, together; a great company, then shall return here.

God is promising the people of Israel and Judah that he “…will bring them back to the land that I gave to their ancestors…” (Jeremiah 30:3).  And not just the able bodied, but those who might be considered a burden to the others – the sick, the pregnant, the mothers with young children.

Prayer: Loving God, following your example, help us to better care for all of your people today and every day.  Amen.

The Week of Christmas 2016 – Isaiah 63:7

Thursday, December 22, 2016

The lectionary selections for the first Sunday after Christmas include: Isaiah 63:7-9; Psalm 148; Hebrews 2:10-18 and Matthew 2:13-23.

Isaiah 63:7I will recount the gracious deeds of the LORD, the praiseworthy acts of the LORD, because of all that the LORD has done for us, and the great favor to the house of Israel that he has shown them according to his mercy, according to the abundance of his steadfast love.

As we approach the end of the calendar year, we approach the season of inventory – businesses take inventory to see what remains on their shelves, many of us take personal inventory to see how we might enter the new year on a different and better note.  We are reminded today that we should take inventory of all God has done for us, too.

Almighty God, thank you for your steadfast presence in our lives.  Continue to mold us into the people you want us to be.  Amen.

First Sunday of Christmas 2016 – Luke 2:8-11

Tuesday, December 20, 2016

The second selection of Christmas Eve readings, Proper II, includes: Isaiah 62:6-12; Psalm 97; Titus 3:4-7 and Luke 2:(1-7), 8-20.

Luke 2:8-11And in that region there were shepherds out in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night.  And an angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were filled with fear.

In the Gospel of Luke, shepherds were the first people to hear of the birth of Jesus.  While Jesus will grow into a man who is considered a shepherd of people, the image that moves me is that these shepherds were rather ordinary people to be the first to hear of the birth of the Messiah.

Gracious God, we are ordinary people.  Help us do extraordinary things in your name.  Amen.

Fourth Sunday of Advent 2016 – Romans 1:1-3

Thursday, December 15, 2016

Romans 1:1-3Paul, a servant of Jesus Christ, called to be an apostle, set apart for the gospel of God, which he promised beforehand through his prophets in the holy scriptures, the gospel according to his Son, who was descended from David according to the flesh… 

I have often thought about my calling and whether I was living into the life God intended.  This passage helped with a new perspective.  Consider today how you are set apart rather than how you are called.  What distinguishes you from others?  What perspective do you bring to a table?  Maybe it is in these answers that you will find your calling.

Prayer: Loving God, help us to discern those unique ways you have molded us so that we might see our calling more clearly.  Amen.

Fourth Sunday of Advent 2016 – Psalm 80:19

Wednesday, December 14, 2016

Psalm 80:19Restore us, O LORD God of hosts; let your face shine, that we may be saved.

‘Restore our relationship with you, O God,’ cries the Psalmist.  Throughout the earthly ministry of Jesus, each time he healed someone, he also restored their relationship to their family, to their community and to God.  Healing was a critical element to Christ’s ministry, and it should be a primary element of our ministry to one another.

Prayer: Healing God, be with us in our ministry of restoration.  Help us to give hope to all who come to us. Amen.

Fourth Sunday of Advent 2016 – Isaiah 7:13a, 14, 16

Tuesday, December 13, 2016 

Isaiah 7:13a, 14, 16 – Then Isaiah said, “…Therefore the Lord himself will give you a sign.  Look, the young woman is with child and shall bear a son, and shall name him Immanuel…For before the child knows how to refuse the evil and choose the good, the land before whose two kings you are in dread will be deserted.”

Immanuel means God is with us.  Matthew will later mention this passage as being fulfilled in the birth of Jesus.  In this season of anticipation and hope, it is my prayer that God will reveal part of his plan to each of us.

Prayer: Gracious God, help us better understand your will for us and for this world.  Amen.

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