The Watchword for the week:
Bear fruits worthy of repentance. Luke 3:8
Stir up our hearts, O Lord,
to prepare the paths for your Only-begotten Son:
that we may worthily serve you
with hearts purified by His coming.
Surely God is my salvation;
I will trust, and will not be afraid,
for the Lord God is my strength and my might;
he has become my salvation.
With joy you will draw water from the wells of salvation.
And you will say on that day:
Give thanks to the Lord,
call on his name; make known his deeds among the nations;
proclaim that his name is exalted.
Sing praises to the Lord, for he has done gloriously; let this be known in all the earth.
Shout aloud and sing for joy O royal Zion,
For great in your midst is the Holy One of Israel.
A Confession of Sin
Preparing for the coming Savior means that we need to acknowledge our need for one. Let us prepare the way for the arrival of Jesus Christ by confessing our sins:
Forgive us, loving God, for the winding path upon which you have to travel to find us. As we bend to the selfish influences of our culture we lose sight of your intended will for us. Too often we live by fear rather than by faith because we underestimate your power to heal the parts of us that are broken, and to correct the parts of us that have drifted from your influence. We confess that we have separated ourselves from you and our spirit, soul, and body have been used to meet our own needs rather than seeking the purity of your will. Bring us back to you so that we might respond to your grace by sharing it with others. Give us the courage to give you unhindered access to all of who we are and in so doing find ourselves blameless at your coming.
Comfort, comfort my people says your God. Speak tenderly to them and proclaim that they have suffered long enough, that their penalty is paid, and their sins are forgiven.
Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit. AMEN.
Now is a time for the reading of a scripture passage. If you have a copy of the Moravian Daily Texts take time to read them now, but don’t rush over them as a task to be completed. These are the words that God would have you to cherish for this day. These are words that could transform your life if you allow them to. So read slowly and deliberately. Pause at words or phrases that happen to catch your spirit, for these are places where God might be speaking to you. When you have finished with your reading of scriptures, take time to pray for the needs that you present today, for the needs of those you love, and for the needs of a hurting world. May your time of prayer help you to clarify where God would want you to focus your energy. When you are ready continue with this prayer as follows:
Lord, have mercy upon us.
Christ, have mercy upon us.
Lord, have mercy upon us.
Christ, hear us.
Giver of life and grace who dwells in heavens, we lift our praise to you. We pray that the ways of heaven might be made real in our earthly lives as we, your children, seek to do your will. Give us today the food that we need. Forgive us as we seek to forgive those around us, and as we fix our eyes on you, keep us from temptation and deliver us from evil influences. For this is your world, and to you is due all honor, and glory, and praise forever and ever. Amen.
Christ, the Light of the world, empower us to shine as lights in this dark world of sin.
As we continue in this Advent season enable us to more faithfully seek your presence in our daily lives.
Come Lord Jesus, come.
Come and mold us, change us, use us.
We praise you, for you are good,
And your mercy endures forever. Amen.