Prayer for December 19: Please pray with me. God of rest, today we pray that you would give us a moment of rest – whatever length of time that is – in the midst of the hustle and bustle of life. As we approach Christmas, there is so much to do and so little time to do it in. Help us to let go of the idea of perfection – the idea that the perfect Christmas will look right and sound right and contain the perfect gifts, as if Christmas were some kind of picture from a hallmark card. Instead, help us to know that the perfect Christmas is one spent with loved ones thankful for each other and for you Lord. Help us to see that everything else is just glitter – it adds to the celebration, but is not essential. Amen.
Prayer for December 6: Please pray with me. God who gives gifts, today we remember St. Nicholas. He gave gifts to so many, yet the greatest gift he shared with others was your Son. As Bishop, he served the people of Smyrna and shared Christ’s gifts of love, peace, grace, mercy, and forgiveness so they could continue to share these gifts with others. Open our hearts and hands to receive these gifts, so that we can open our mouths to speak words of mercy and forgiveness. Open our arms so that we can share love in the form of an embrace. Open our eyes so we can see you and serve. Amen.