A week before

Praying my old walking prayer a week before a new Christmas:

Lord Jesus Christ, my savior and friend…

…and son of David. In Matthew 1 we hear you named through a long genealogy as a descendant of King David, and so we call you “king” and “son of David.” But my genealogy is English, German, Danish, Scottish and Irish. Yet you have named me a sister to the “son of David,” and so through you I am adopted into a tradition I really know little about. You have welcomed me across barriers that divide. Therefore when I name you as the son of David, I too must welcome across the gaps that divide people from people. I must do for others what you have done for me.

You are the way. Walk with me in your way today…

…as I check off the places I need to be and things I need to do. There’s a sermon to write, cards to mail, greens to hang, gifts to buy, and I am getting squeezed by the expectation of the looming holiday. Yes, I meant looming. I’ve already been a disappointment lately to quite a few folks in my life. How much more damage will I do? And as for you, I have had little time to notice whether you are walking beside me or not. I wonder, as I wait in yet another line with chirpy music blaring, if I have taken a wrong turn.

Let your life spring up in me…

…because I know deep down that what we call the “good life” with all the perks we wish for and all the tinsel that is shining is so different from the life you talk about.


your love flow through me…

especially when I am so self-protective that I am not open to the ways you want to love people through me.

your peace extend to all I meet…

Can you extend peace through me when I am so tense and tangled inside? Can you help me stop being so hard on myself, to offer a little peace to myself?

your surrounding Spirit protect me…

…mostly from myself.

Plant your word deep in my heart, that I may know your voice and not wander.

Actually, you may have to shout, because my hearing is not too good lately,and the anxiety volume in me and the world around me has been turned up to high.

Give me strength and courage for the challenges of this day…

…especially when I see the challenges as road blocks and inconveniences, instead of opportunities that you want to be involved in, opportunities for you and me together to put this faith thing into practice. You know like Joseph saw the roadblock of a pregnant Mary and was offered the opportunity of naming and raising your son.


and joy in noticing your grace upon grace.

In the end, joy is a gift, always and only your gift…very different from our own happiness and satisfactions. If I could only open my eyes, I would see the great and gracious things you are doing. If I would only stop listening to my fears and frustrations, I would hear your joy hovering around the fringes, eager to step into my awareness. Please come on in and take a seat. You would be the best gift for all of us this Christmas.

Comments

  1. Thank you for this, Elaine.