One of the things I love to do during the days after Christmas is read through the prayers and letters that I have received over the preceding weeks when life is too hectic for quiet reflection. It gives me an opportunity to pray for friends around the world as well as to reflect on the birth of Christ and the wonder of his coming into our world.
This year I have received some beautiful prayers that I wanted to share with you all
The first is from Jeff Pratt who currently helps lead YWAM Axiom and Axiom: Global Monastic Community while creating an urban monastery in New Haven CT.
“Jesus, Oh Long expected One, the Joy of the whole earth, we pause here at the end of a decade, to consider the wonders of your comings in the history of our lives. Struck breathless by your scandalous grace we thank you for choosing a stable for your first home, to give us hope that there would come a day that you would be born into the far fouler recesses of our own barren hearts. Thank you Jesus, for that day has come!
Oh Inescapable One, Incarnation of the Father’s love, thank you for the hope of your future coming in glory, when every tear will be dried from the eyes of Your friends, and more importantly, finally from your own. But till then, Jesus, we’re stuck between the dreaming at the stable and the coming true of Your second coming. So we’re most thankful that you’re the Ever-coming Christ! You relentlessly come all the time in our lives; in the sacrament of the present moment you live and breath. Forgive us for not seeing you there in the years gone by. Forgive us for our selfish living. May we perceive that there is a divinely initiated banquet going on at the heart of ordinary life, and that around that table is the poor, broken and needy of the world. In this coming New Year, and decade, we want to be where you are Jesus, more than anything. Somehow we want to provide for you a more comfortable place to lay your head, and your heart. We’re not sure how to do this, but this is our quest. In Your most beautiful name we pray.” AMEN
The second comes from Leigh, from Raleigh NC.
Tonight after all the hullabaloo that we call Christmas, please remember the words of Howard Thurman, renowned theologian: “Sometimes in the stillness of the quiet, if we listen, we can hear the whisper in the heart giving strength to weakness, courage to fear, hope to despair.” May you seek within the quiet of the shepherd’s field, the manger’s stillness, and wisemen’s quiet multi-night journeys spent in seeking the Peace. Regroup and regather your spiritual selves in the silence that make this a 12 day event. Love is all we need. It is the greatest of these that we will find within.