Wednesday in the Third Week of Advent
+ In the name of the Father, and the Son, and the Holy Spirit. Amen!
Opening Sentence – (In the preparation days of Celtic Advent)
+ We have waited long for You. Deep has been our darkness.
+ We long for You to shine right here among us where we are.
+ We will not fear the shadows that surround us if only You will come among us!
+ We wait for the sound of a cry in the night, the joy that follows pain, the coming of hope.
Reading: Psalm 85:9-14 (NLT)
Surely his salvation is near to those who fear him, so our land will be filled with his glory.
Unfailing love and truth have met together. Righteousness and peace have kissed! Truth springs up from the earth, and righteousness smiles down from heaven.
Yes, the Lord pours down his blessings. Our land will yield its bountiful harvest. Righteousness goes as a herald before him, preparing the way for his steps.
Reading: Isaiah 45:6-8, 18, 21-25 (NLT)
All the world from east to west will know there is no other God. I am the Lord, and there is no other. I create the light and make the darkness. I send good times and bad times. I, the Lord, am the one who does these things.
“Open up, O heavens, and pour out your righteousness. Let the earth open wide so salvation and righteousness can sprout up together. I, the Lord, created them….”
For the Lord is God, and he created the heavens and earth and put everything in place. He made the world to be lived in, not to be a place of empty chaos. “I am the Lord,” he says, “and there is no other….”
“Consult together, argue your case. Get together and decide what to say. Who made these things known so long ago? What idol ever told you they would happen? Was it not I, the Lord? For there is no other God but me, a righteous God and Savior. There is none but me.
Let all the world look to me for salvation! For I am God; there is no other. I have sworn by my own name; I have spoken the truth, and I will never go back on my word: Every knee will bend to me, and every tongue will declare allegiance to me.”
The people will declare, “The Lord is the source of all my righteousness and strength.” And all who were angry with him will come to him and be ashamed. In the Lord all the generations of Israel will be justified, and in him they will boast.
Reading: Luke 7:18-23 (NLT)
The disciples of John the Baptist told John about everything Jesus was doing. So John called for two of his disciples, and he sent them to the Lord to ask him, “Are you the Messiah we’ve been expecting, or should we keep looking for someone else?”
John’s two disciples found Jesus and said to him, “John the Baptist sent us to ask, ‘Are you the Messiah we’ve been expecting, or should we keep looking for someone else?’”
At that very time, Jesus cured many people of their diseases, illnesses, and evil spirits, and he restored sight to many who were blind. Then he told John’s disciples, “Go back to John and tell him what you have seen and heard—the blind see, the lame walk, those with leprosy are cured, the deaf hear, the dead are raised to life, and the Good News is being preached to the poor.” And he added, “God blesses those who do not fall away because of me.”
Lord Jesus Christ, Word of God made flesh: thank you for your presence among us:
+ Bring justice to those bowed down with suffering: defend the poor and the powerless.
+ Prince of Peace, turn our jealousies into love, teach us to forgive rather than give way to anger.
+ When you come to judge the world, may we stand before you without fear.
+ You stand in our midst unknown: help us to find you in the poor and the troubled.
Heavenly Father: give us new eyes to see your presence among us. Through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.
“Of the Father’s Love Begotten” – traditional a capella chior
Make your heart ready for the King of Glory to come in. Pray: come dwell among us and be our peace today.
+ In the name of the Father, and the Son, and the Holly Spirit. Amen!