Holy God, O Gladsome, Joyous Light,
In a world that is both hard and holy, messy and miraculous, twice daily you reveal to us a measure of your magnificence when darkness and light embrace and the sky above us radiates with color. You lift our gaze to rejoice each dawn and in the starry, vesper light expand our imagination in wonder. By day we know the gifts of meaningful work to be done, the meeting of neighbors and strangers, and the warmth of your love. By night we know the gifts of time with loved ones, a space for dreams to emerge, and sacred rest.
Gathered here in your sanctuary aglow with glass and garland may we be formed and re-formed into the community you wish us to be. As we journey toward the manger and the mystery of love incarnate, may we be people of hope and makers of peace.
In Christ we understand that you know what it is like to live…
Where violence is common and the struggle for power is never ending.
Where there is not enough room and shelter is hard to find, when refuge is not guaranteed no matter how arduous the journey.
Where sorrow and suffering cannot be avoided.
In Christ we know your compassion, a comfort to our most tender experiences. Let our experience of your generous grace turn our hearts toward the needs of others. You know what it is like to be human. May we know what it is like to serve Christ in the world…
To make peace in our homes and communities bringing kindness and reconciliation to every corner where we live, learn, and labor.
To respond to the needs of others with increasing generosity, offering tangible relief for those in need.
To be bearers of hope, sitting attentively, being present with the ill, the grieving, and all who wait.
Meet us O God. Meet us in the gifts of the day and in the gifts of the night. Bring us to the joyous dawn. Bring us to the gladsome vesper light where your goodness and glory glimmer. Meet us O God, at the manger where heaven meets earth, where hard meets holy, where messy meets miraculous, to this child who will lead us, who will challenge us, and who teaches us to pray…