Saturday, December 15, 2012

A Prayer for Widows at Christmas

Matthew 1:23 (NASB)

Behold, the virgin shall be with child and shall bear a Son, and they shall call His name Immanuel,” which translated means, “God with us.”
 
Dear God,
You've embedded our seasons and calendars with remembrances of you. The stars shine brighter in these long nights of December, the earth demonstrates your widom as it gives way to seasons of rest and replenishment. Weather fronts swirl both snow and balm around our globe, the moon pulls tides in and out, and planets follow their courses in a cycle of centuries.
Nations rise against nations, republics succeed and fail; houses are built, lovers are loved, babies are born-- some grow old--not all, as we mourn the massacre of little ones yesterday. But whether only five years old or ninety-five, all eventually die. Yet against this massive and brutal canvas of nature and man your prophets and Scripture lay this claim: 
Immanuel: You. Are. With. Us.
You are with the widow too. Such knowledge is too wondrous! We ask, as Mary asked the angel, "How can this be?"
How is it that the Creator of the universe--each galaxy, star, solar system, planet, continent, nation, people group, family, and person-- how is it that you come to us as Immanuel? How is it that you are with us?
Renew and revive our sense of your presence in the cold beauty and long nights of December and grief. For when we know you are with us, we know we can make it through. When our own strength and hope are gone, "God with us," is all that matters.
When our Creator reaches through all of his creation to touch our life and enter our world, we begin to live again.
Grant us this peace and life through your presence this Christmas, Immanuel.
Amen

ferree
Thank you for visiting the WCP this weekend. I feel like a thick blanket of horror and grief covers our nation over yesterday's massacre. It should. It's a time to weep with those who weep. Anything else seems frivolous. And this killing, added to your own loss, might seem like too much to bear.
 
If so, just breathe. That's your assignment for today. This darkness will eventually be spent, and joy will dawn again--- someday. In the meantime, get up and do what needs to be done today. Wash the dishes, take a walk, do the laundry, wrap the presents . . .
 
On Monday we'll look at how we can help others who are grieving even if we're not "over it" ourselves. Yes, grieving people can help other grieving people. The need is great. I do not believe the world will end on Dec. 21. What I do believe is that "There will be terrible times in the last days. People will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boastful, proud, abusive, disobedient to their parents, ungrateful, unholy, without love, unforgiving, slanderous, without self-control, brutal . . . (2 Timothy 3) Since that sounds like the daily news, perhaps we are living in the last days. Whether we are or not though, we are here. And as long as we have breath, God has us here for a reason. So please check back on Monday to see how we can help others in these days.

3 comments:

  1. Thank you for the prayer Ferree. As I opened my devotional book, this mornings bible verses are about bearing one another's burdens (Galatians 6:2) and rejoicing w/ those who rejoice and weeping w/ those who weep(Romans 12:15) of course it brings back yesterdays massacre and all those people who are grieving. I decided to go ahead and read my evening devotion and the first verse is, Son, go work today in my vineyard(Matthew 21:28) and the last verse is, Therefore, my beloved brethren be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that your labor is not in vain in the Lord. 1 Corinthians 15:58
    I think it fits so well with what you just wrote. Yes, we need to grieve and be there for those who are suffering right now, praying for them also. But like you also said at the end we need to get up and keep moving and continue with what the Lord has for our lives whether we may be or not in the last days.
    Marisol

    ReplyDelete
  2. God seems to always be willing to repeat His message to me. It seems He does the same for you too, Marisol! We weep, we grieve, and then its most important to keep on in God's work---weeping and grieving included. Thanks so much for your comments, it was more than a coincidence that you came to those verses today.

    ReplyDelete

Thank you for taking the time to comment. I am not always able to reply but your remarks mean a lot to me and will appear as soon as possible.

Here are some tips for commenting:
Remember to click the Publish button.
Choosing the anonymous identity is easiest if you do not have your own blog.
Using a computer rather than a cell phone seems to work better. Thanks again!