God of the Universe
On this Christmas Eve, it’s easy to focus on the helpless babe
And lose sight of your power and majesty.
It’s easy to see ourselves in this child
Fully human, feeling the cold, knowing fear and pain,
And forget that he is fully divine, the full expression of your will for us.
As we come to praise and honor this miracle,
We confess that we are distracted by our world:
The human trappings we’ve built around this holy day,
the violence and terror that blinds us to your peace,
the pain of loss that is felt so keenly at festive tables and decorated living rooms,
and the reality of illness, treatment and death that cannot be delayed or denied.
We are distracted by absence of people we love:
those who have been wounded or rejected by your people,
those who have chosen other paths,
those who have not embraced your offer of grace and kinship.
And so we come, asking for help, seeking your will,
Lifting up our concerns, burdens and distractions in silence to you:
The names that we carry in our hearts….
The faces that flicker in our minds eye….
The sighs that have not yet formed into words….
We bring all of these things out of the darkness of doubt and fear
into the light of Christ’s coming,
clinging to the peace, hope, love and joy that faith enables us to claim
We celebrate your birth, Lord Jesus;
we remember your life, your teaching and ministry;
we mourn your rejection and death – even the mystery of their necessity;
we rejoice at your resurrection and return to your followers;
we marvel at your ascension and give thanks for your presence at God’s right hand;
we look for your coming, unable to guess the hour or day.
Until then we wait, and we follow, with halting steps, learning, serving, and
with the knowledge that you hear and advocate for us,