December 21, 2014

Liturgy Reflection & Benediction 12.21.14

Liturgy

Holy One, be the light
in our darkness today.
As we light the candle of hope,
we pray for those who feel hopeless . . .

As we light the candle of peace,
we pray for all victims of violence . . .

As we light the candle of joy,
we pray for those whose hearts
are weighed down by sorrow . . .

As we light the candle of love,
we pray for those who do not feel loved,
for those who struggle to love others . . .

Holy One, be the light in
our darkness this season,
that we might reflect your light
into the dark corners of our world.

We ask and wait in anticipation
of Immanuel, our God with us,
and worship the name
of the Father,
of the Son
and of the Holy Spirit.
Amen.

Community Confession

Lord, give us courage to prepare for your coming.

When we are tempted to busyness this season,
slow our minds and still our hearts.

When we are tempted to enrich ourselves with things,
give us, instead, a longing for the riches of your kingdom.

When we are tempted to spend our
resources on ourselves who lack for nothing,
give us hearts to serve the poor and the hungry.

When we are tempted to celebrate
Christmas too early in our own way,
show us the joy of prayer and of waiting.

Lord, give us courage,
to wait for you in faith.

We ask in the name
of the Father,
of the Son
and of the Holy Spirit,
amen.

Reflection

What are the stories that need to be remembered and retold during this season of Advent?
How can our longing for God to act turn into a desire for our participation in making things the way God intended?
How can we put ourselves back in the narrative of God and his story?

Benediction

In the darkness a light shines
though shadows lengthen,
the flame burns bright.
Day by day God draws nearer;
day by day we prepare.

In the depths of creation, God planted a vision
breathed it into life, wrote it on our hearts.

In every time and every place,
in this time and this place,
we are called to witness to real power, real authority:
Love made flesh, beauty revealed in darkness.

God declares a new beginning,
heaven and earth sing glory.
The promise is true,
and we are its messengers.

Do not be afraid:
Immanuel, God is with us!
The Spirit calls us still to share the good news:
light shines, and darkness will never overcome it!

So go forth in the name
of the Father,
of the Son
and of the Holy Spirit.
Amen.

Go in peace and live the church.
See you throughout the week.

[Photo by Yosigo @ Flickr]

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