A Christmas Eve Prayer, 2012

At Watchung Avenue Presbyterian Church

As we begin our prayers tonight, let us first begin in silence as we listen to God….

On this Christmas Eve we remember….

We remember that Mary and Joseph welcomed You

Even as they trembled with fear and joy

The fear and joy of new parents, welcoming their first child

The fear and joy of faithful servants, knowing that their world would never be the same

We remember that the animals gather around You

Their welcoming and friendly spirits surrounding your manger

Their warm breath surrounding you

Their comforting eyes looking at you

We remember that the shepherds came to look for You

They wanted to see you with their own eyes

They wanted to see the Good News that their world was about to change

We remember that someone opened up a safe place

For you to be born

For your family to hide

So you could join the world

That had waited so long for your birth

On this Christmas Eve we gather…

Our world is so different

And yet so much is the same

We are still at war

People are still oppressed

You are still not welcomed

Parents like Mary and Joseph still have no place to call home

Peace is still elusive

And Herod’s are still on thrones

On this Christmas Eve we gather….

Make us new again

Just like that first Christmas

Embolden us to be your people

Who struggle against war and end the violence of our world

Who support any who is oppressed

Who welcome with extravagance

Who open up our homes and our communities to the Mary’s and the Joseph’s

of our world

Who live as examples of your Peace

Who do not tolerate the Herod’s of our world who sit on thrones that do not

belong to them—but to You

On this Christmas Eve

O Lord of Love

God of Light

Child of the Promise

Spirit of Wisdom

Be with us

Be with our world

Be with our families

Be with our communities

Be with this congregation

Give us the courage to be the people you have called us to be

Give us the courage to follow your Child

The one in the Stable

Surrounded by his family

The animals

The shepherds

And those who came to seek him

On this Christmas Eve we gather and we remember

That our lives belong to you

And that you invite us to follow

And be transformed

Once again this Christmas Eve.

Amen.

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