O God, Spirit that emboldens, Source of our courage, You urge us again and again to live in hope and faith Not in worry or fear. And yet, it’s so easy to fixate On what might go wrong. It’s so easy to turn away from challenges, And to flee from difficult situations. Forgive us, O God, For our tendency to run and hide, And embolden us to step out in faith once again. Help us resist the urge to retreat in fear, And let us look to you for courage and strength. So we might be more authentic. So we might step up and do the right thing. So we might be agents of transformation And boldly live the lives you call us to live. Amen.
O God of hope, the news is troubling, so much in this world is discouraging, violence, deceit, addiction, war, health concerns around the world, mental health concerns that plague the soul— all of it is so much to bear. I, like many others, wonder does anything we do in our daily lives actually make a difference? What difference do we make, God? What hope do we have? I wonder these things, but I also have hope, as I see people making a difference. I see your movement in some of the most challenging situations. I sense your presence even amid the pain— especially amid the pain. I see it, God, help me to further it. Embolden me to not only see hope, transformation, and your dynamic movement, but to become a participant in hope, change, and your movement in this world. Your kin(g)dom come. Amen.
A prayer after reading Luke 3:1-6 God, I like to feel prepared, organized, ready. I try to stay focused, work diligently, and prepare, So that I do my job well. In my head, my job well done will benefit others and please you. And I think, to some extent, that’s true. But God, I also recognize that I want to feel prepared to help calm my anxiety, to cling to some illusion of control, and to try to avoid embarrassment. Yet in this season, O God, you call us to prepare Not so we feel less anxious, not so we avoid embarrassment, or so we look good. In this season and beyond, You call us to prepare for your sake, so you may be known, So a pathway to your people may be clear; so that your spirit may freely move in, through, and all around us. God, in this Advent season, may I shift my focus, turning my attention to you and preparing for your hope, peace, joy, and love to flourish in this world. This is my prayer. Amen.
O come, O come Emmanuel And fill our hearts with hope, Activate our imaginations Inspire us to dream. So in uncertain days of injustice and pain, So when despair closes in, And we can’t find our way, We may find you in our hearts, becoming people of hope, Living hope, spreading hope, Furthering your transformative work in this world. Let this be our prayer, O God. In Christ’s name, we pray. Amen. *The first line of this prayer is taken from the O Antiphons and the Advent hymn O Come, O Come Emmanuel.
O God, it’s already the fifth of December. How can that be? I wonder. These five days have flown by so quickly. Was I even mindful? Was I present? Was I aware of your presence and the gifts of each day? This season of preparation can so easily become one of anxiety, Deadlines, countdowns, overloaded calendars, Lengthy lists of to-dos. This season of waiting can so easily turn into A season of rushing around, And then I wonder where the time has gone. God, I sense your Advent rhythm reminding me to slow down, Calling me back to the present, Challenging me to let go of that hurried drive. Light a candle, meditate on light and hope, Go about the day in a prayerful way. God help me live this Advent rhythm, may it mark my days.
Eternal God, today, we remember that when all seemed lost, you appeared before us in a new way. When hope was gone, you resurrected it. When your presence seemed to be buried, you resurrected it. When Life laid beneath the ground, you resurrected it. And so, we rejoice in your power to endure and in your spirit that remains. Amen.
compassion, creation, dancing, forever, God, goodness, hardship, healing, hope, humankind, Joy, kindness, light, Lord, love, lure, nonviolence, pain, pathway, peace, PICARDY, prayer, sacred, singing, souls, Spirit, wishes, world, wounds
This meditation can be sung to the tune of Let All Mortal Flesh (PICARDY) Let all weary souls find a pathway To a place where hope endures Not a path toward fleeting wishes But toward a persisting lure Drawn to goodness dancing in the dark and dim Hope and Guiding Light shine again. Let all humankind find compassion— Healing hate’s deep festering wounds, Walking in the paths of nonviolence, Standing for what’s sacred and good. Hear our prayer, O Lord, revive us for the task To live out your peace in this world. Let all God’s creation together Join in a most joyous refrain Singing of the goodness that’s rising Singing amidst hardship and pain Good and gracious God, supply us with the tone. Let us make your Spirit known. Let us all find loving kindness And pursue compassionate ways Giv’n to us by our Holy Maker Born in us again and again. God’s enduring love for us will never fade God with us forever, always.