Silence and Centering – Pause for 5 minutes of Silence
“Be still, and know that I am God; – Psalm 46:10
Heavenly Father, We worship You and express our gratitude for Your amazing plan of redemption made possible through the birth of the Christ child. This providential event, predicted long before by the Hebrew prophets, culminated in our Lord Jesus being born in Bethlehem at the exact appointed time. Nevertheless, we confess that we can often become jaded by a seasonal story that we have heard multiple times. Forgive our sin of apathy and indifference. Most certainly, we do not want to take this triumphant miracle for granted. May it become increasingly thrilling to our soul to worship the arrival of the Son of God to earth with new eyes. And thank you, Holy Spirit, for securing our salvation in Christ for all who believe. We lift up God’s holy name in adoration. Amen.
FIRST READING: 2 Samuel 23:1-7
23:1 Now these are the last words of David: The oracle of David, son of Jesse, the oracle of the man whom God exalted, the anointed of the God of Jacob, the favorite of the Strong One of Israel:
23:2 The spirit of the LORD speaks through me, his word is upon my tongue.
23:3 The God of Israel has spoken, the Rock of Israel has said to me: One who rules over people justly, ruling in the fear of God,
23:4 is like the light of morning, like the sun rising on a cloudless morning, gleaming from the rain on the grassy land.
23:5 Is not my house like this with God? For he has made with me an everlasting covenant, ordered in all things and secure. Will he not cause to prosper all my help and my desire?
23:6 But the godless are all like thorns that are thrown away; for they cannot be picked up with the hand;
23:7 to touch them one uses an iron bar or the shaft of a spear. And they are entirely consumed in fire on the spot.
SECOND READING: Revelation 1:4b-8
1:4b Grace to you and peace from him who is and who was and who is to come, and from the seven spirits who are before his throne,
1:5 and from Jesus Christ, the faithful witness, the firstborn of the dead, and the ruler of the kings of the earth. To him who loves us and freed us from our sins by his blood,
1:6 and made us to be a kingdom, priests serving his God and Father, to him be glory and dominion forever and ever. Amen.
1:7 Look! He is coming with the clouds; every eye will see him, even those who pierced him; and on his account all the tribes of the earth will wail. So it is to be. Amen.
1:8 “I am the Alpha and the Omega,” says the Lord God, who is and who was and who is to come, the Almighty.
Communion is important because it’s a command to remember. Jesus wants us to remember every time we taste bread and wine, and even when we sit at the tables in our own homes, that He is the one who provides all we need. He gives us the physical food that we need to survive and the spiritual nourishment we need to keep taking our next steps with Him.
Jesus started the tradition of communion. He instructed His followers to use bread and wine to remember the sacrifice He was going to make when He died for our sins on the cross
1 Corinthians 11:23-26
English Standard Version
23 For I received from the Lord what I also delivered to you, that the Lord Jesus on the night when he was betrayed took bread, 24 and when he had given thanks, he broke it, and said, “This is my body, which is for[a] you. Do this in remembrance of me.”[b] 25 In the same way also he took the cup, after supper, saying, “This cup is the new covenant in my blood. Do this, as often as you drink it, in remembrance of me.” 26 For as often as you eat this bread and drink the cup, you proclaim the Lord’s death until he comes.
In peace, let us pray to the Lord: Lord, have mercy.
For the Holy Church, that God would give us grace to serve Him with reverence and awe, granting us faith to endure to the end, let us pray to the Lord: Lord, have mercy.
For the pastors in our circuit, district and Synod, that God would give them the words to testify to His love in Christ Jesus and the hope that is in them, let us pray to the Lord: Lord, have mercy.
For the troubled in mind and spirit, that God would give them strength to cast every care on Him and give them quietness of heart through a firm trust in Christ, let us pray to the Lord: Lord, have mercy.
For the lonely, that God would place them into the family of His Church to find peace in Christ and fulfillment through loving service to their neighbors, let us pray to the Lord: Lord, have mercy.
For the leaders of our nation, that they may walk in the way of justice and truth, using the power vested in them to protect the weak and innocent, let us pray to the Lord: Lord, have mercy.
For all threatened by natural disasters, wars, famines and troubles of any kind, that God would fill all hearts with repentance and humility to trust Him in every circumstance, let us pray to the Lord: Lord, have mercy.
For the hungry, that they would be filled with good things; for the poor and unemployed, that they may find gainful employment; for the sick, [especially _____________,] that they may be healed; for those who mourn, [especially _____________,] that they may be comforted; and for those who travel, that God would watch over them, let us pray to the Lord: Lord, have mercy.
For each communicant, that with a repentant heart and faith they would be worthy to receive Christ’s body and blood this day, not to their judgment but for their salvation, let us pray to the Lord: Lord, have mercy.
In thanksgiving for all who have departed this life in faith, [especially _____________,] that as we see the signs of our Lord’s second coming, we would not lose heart, but remain faithful unto death and receive the crown of life, let us pray to the Lord: Lord, have mercy.
Into Your hands, O Lord, we commend all for whom we pray, trusting in Your mercy; through Jesus Christ, our Lord. Amen.
The Our Father (slowly pray this)
Our Father which art in heaven, hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come, thy will be done on earth, as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread. And forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass against us. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from the evil one. For yours is the kingdom, the power, and the glory forever, Amen.