Wednesday, December 28, 2005

Christmas Prayer

This is a prayer I prayed on Christmas morning at Harpeth Presbyterian Church.

God of incarnation and grace,

God of chaos and unpredictability,

It was you who swept over the face of the waters…over the chaos that was creation in the beginning…and brought order and beauty.

It was you who led the Israelites through the desert with a whirlwind by day, and a pillar of fire by night.

It was you, and only you, who said to a valley full of dry bones, “I will cause breath to enter you, and you shall live.

It was your breath that filled the lungs of the prophets as they called upon Israel to live according your will.

It is your breath that fills the lungs of the Christ child who is wrapped in swaddling clothes and lying in a manger.

Today we breathe a collective sigh of relief. Relief from holiday shopping, relief from Christmas concerts and end of the semester performances, relief from exams and finals and projects, and relief from the stress that comes with waiting…with anticipating…with yearning for the arrival of, “The Something Special,” that we know is Christmas day. Creation itself says ahhhh as it experiences your arrival on earth…your arrival in a little baby.

We confess that we aren’t completely ready, and probably never will be, for your presence among us, but thankfully, you don’t wait on us to be ready, but rather seek us and show up in wild and unexpected ways.

On this special Christmas day, the Christmas that falls on Sunday, the Lord’s Day, we call upon your spirit to be among us and to guide us, that we might allow the little children to lead us…that as lions, we might lie down with the lambs, and that as kids, we might not be afraid to approach the leopard in peace and love.

It is truly an amazing thing that you have done this day…emptying yourself and being born in human likeness, that we might receive grace upon grace upon grace…heaps and piles and mountains of grace. As we all let go of that breath that we’ve been holding in throughout the advent season, may we breathe back in your tender mercies so that we can be your people in the world.

In the name of the Christ who is born this day in the city of David,



Amy said...

Ah, Alan, that's lovely...