Wednesday, December 21, 2011

.why Christmas means more to me as an adult.

After HNGR, and cancer, and after a year and a half of post-grad life, and after, I think, a little bit more understanding that, no matter how filled with joy and love my life is (and oh is it!),
this world is not my home and the point of life is not to be happy and without pain.

"The celebration of Advent is possible only to those who are troubled in soul,
who know themselves to be poor and imperfect,
who look forward to something greater to come. 

...the Holy One himself comes down to us,
God in the child in the manger.
God comes.
The Lord Jesus comes.
Christmas comes.
Christians rejoice!...
We are no longer alone. God is with us."

-Bonhoeffer, Christmas Sermons

Such comfort and joy in heartache or fear:
with Christmas everywhere around me, I'm reminded...
not that things are easy or painless, but that in all things:
incarnation, He walked our earth, Emmanuel, God-with-us,
He abides in us.

(HT for Bonhoeffer quote)

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Human Needs Global Resources Covenant, 2009

As fellow travelers on this journey, we commit to this covenant before God. Lord, in Your mercy, hear these our prayers:

When confronted with scarcity, need, and inadequacy, may we be nourished by the Bread of Life and the Cup of Salvation. Abundance overflows from Your table, sustaining all who come in faith. Father, help us.

When monotony blurs our vision and dulls our senses, may we encounter others as Christ did, through intentional presence in daily life, submitting as clay to be formed into vessels filled with the Spirit. Christ, guide us.

When wounded by the fractured condition of Your people, may we be united by Your Lordship in faith, hope, and love; seeing, as through the facets of a diamond, the beautiful spectrum of Your light reflected onto Your holy Church joined in praise. Spirit, empower us.

When all Creation groans, afflicted by injustice and driven to despair, may the promise of redemption root us in the hope of Your Kingdom: "Behold, I am making all things new!"

Holy Trinity, send us now into the world in peace, and grant us strength and courage to love and serve You with gladness and singleness of heart.