11For the grace of God has appeared, bringing salvation to all, 12training us to renounce impiety and worldly passions, and in the present age to live lives that are self-controlled, upright, and godly, 13while we wait for the blessed hope and the manifestation of the glory of our great God and Savior, Jesus Christ. 14He it is who gave himself for us that he might redeem us from all iniquity and purify for himself a people of his own who are zealous for good deeds.
- Light a candle to remember Christ’s presence with you.
- Sit in silence five to fifteen minutes embracing the great light that shines before you.
- As the birth of Jesus draws near, notice what arises in you.
- Is there excitement? Is there anxiety? Perhaps both?
- Hold all of these feelings before you as you consider who God chose to be born into the world in this way.
- God chose to come into the world to free us from the things that don’t last: impiety and worldly passions.
- Look at the feelings you are holding. What impiety and worldly passion are you ready to let go?
- In the new space created in the letting go, what new life does God have for you?
- How do you desire for this new creation to be born?
- How do you desire to give glory to God for the hope of this new creation?
- What is God’s invitation for you today?
- Give thanks to God for this time of new life and for any new insights you have received.
- Share as you feel led in the reply box below.
Revised Common Lectionary Readings for Thursday, December 24, 2020, Christmas Eve (Year B)
Luke 2:1-14 (15-20)
If you use these prayers in other groups, please give credit to author. Permission to use in not-for-profit settings. (c) 2020 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 certification, 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.