1The beginning of the good news of Jesus Christ, the Son of God.
2As it is written in the prophet Isaiah,
“See, I am sending my messenger ahead of you,
who will prepare your way;
3 the voice of one crying out in the wilderness:
‘Prepare the way of the Lord,
make his paths straight,’”
4John the baptizer appeared in the wilderness, proclaiming a baptism of repentance for the forgiveness of sins.5And people from the whole Judean countryside and all the people of Jerusalem were going out to him, and were baptized by him in the river Jordan, confessing their sins. 6Now John was clothed with camel’s hair, with a leather belt around his waist, and he ate locusts and wild honey. 7He proclaimed, “The one who is more powerful than I is coming after me; I am not worthy to stoop down and untie the thong of his sandals. 8I have baptized you with water; but he will baptize you with the Holy Spirit.”
- Light a candle to remember Christ’s presence with you.
- Sit is silent meditation five to fifteen minutes paying attention to the breath.
- Who is the messenger sent ahead to prepare the way for you?
- What preparations are being made?
- What do you need to confess along the way?
- In the name of Jesus Christ you are forgiven.
- How does Christ meet you on the path?
- Where does the dove of peace land upon you?
- What freedom does the dove of peace bring you?
- Take time to savor and embody this freedom.
- What hope is born in this freedom?
- Give thanks to God for this time together on the path and for any new insights you have received.
- Share as you feel led in the reply box below.
Revised Common Lectionary Readings for Sunday, December 10, 2023, the Second Sunday of Advent (Year B)
Psalm 85:1-2, 8-13
2 Peter 3:8-15a
If you use these prayers in other groups, please give credit to author. Permission to use in not-for-profit settings. (c) 2023 The Rev. Dr. Lil Smith, DASD
Rev. Dr. Lil Smith is a trained spiritual director, supervisor, and co-founder of Retreat House Spirituality Center in Richardson, TX. Upon completion of her spiritual direction training, Lil began Praying the Lectionary in 2011 as a spiritual practice for her morning prayer time. Instead of reading about someone else’s experience of God, it was important for her to create a prayer practice that would encourage felt sense experience of the Holy emerging from within. It dawned on her others might enjoy the practice, as well. So she began to share them on this site.
As you experience the practice of Praying the Lectionary, adopt a loving, caring, and compassionate stance. If the end of your prayer and meditation time is not pointing to love and hope, there is more work to do. Keep wrestling. God is faithful to your journey. Love and hope will emerge. Be gentle with yourself and befriend any judgment that arises in you.