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Prayer Tip: Miracle on 34th Street

December 18, 2022

Daily Scripture

Matthew 20:26 (NIV); Philippians 2:3-4 (NRSV); Matthew 1:18-23 (NRSV)

Matthew 20:26 (NIV)

Whoever wants to be great among you will be your servant.

Philippians 2:3-4 (NRSV)

Do nothing from selfish ambition or conceit, but in humility regard others as better than yourselves. Let each of you look not to your own interests, but to the interests of others.

Matthew 1:18-23 (NRSV)

Now the birth of Jesus the Messiah took place in this way. When his mother Mary had been engaged to Joseph, but before they lived together, she was found to be with child from the Holy Spirit. Her husband Joseph, being a righteous man and unwilling to expose her to public disgrace, planned to dismiss her quietly. But just when he had resolved to do this, an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream and said, “Joseph, son of David, do not be afraid to take Mary as your wife, for the child conceived in her is from the Holy Spirit. She will bear a son, and you are to name him Jesus, for he will save his people from their sins.” All this took place to fulfill what had been spoken by the Lord through the prophet: “Look, the virgin shall conceive and bear a son, and they shall name him Emmanuel,” which means, “God is with us.”

Prayer Tip

by Chris Holliday, Resurrection West Connection & Care Pastor and Adult Discipleship Director

Yesterday my family and I visited Union Station for some Christmas fun. We enjoyed gazing at the beautiful trees and decorations, listening to our favorite carols and viewing a wonderful Christmas movie, The Polar Express. I love special holiday moments like these.

But this season isn’t always filled with joy. As the days get shorter and the nights grow longer, the darkness of grief, anxiety, depression, illness, disappointment, addiction, job loss, financial burdens, pain and sadness can overcome us. We journey to the manager trying to believe that the light can and will truly pierce the darkness. We long for the hope and peace of the Christ Child. And we wait.

For all who are experiencing these feelings this Advent, I invite you to use the following prayer as your own. I hope it’s helpful.

Gracious and Loving God,
Scripture says that You are my comforter, my helper, my advocate, my very present help in times of trouble and that with You, I am never alone.
I hear those words and I want to believe; but I confess that sometimes, it’s hard to do. The struggles I’m facing make it difficult to experience your hope and peace right now.
This season, help me believe in the miracle of Christmas. Help me remember that you came to be with me through your Son; that you sent him as a baby to be my Savior; that he grew and experienced the joys and pains of life; and that he showed me what a loving God you are.
Help me know that I am never alone; for you walk beside me though all the ups and downs of life and sometimes, even carry me. God, I need you to carry me right now. I need to feel wrapped in your comfort and at home in your peace. I need to trust that nothing can separate me from your love. Hear now my concerns and challenges:

Take time to talk with God about what you’re feeling and going through.

Loving God, thank you for being a safe place and for listening. May I also listen to you. May I recognize you at work in my life. May I feel your nudges and respond to your guidance. May I lean into your truths and promises and believe.
Now I ask that you draw me closer to the manger. Show me the light that pierces the darkness. Bring comfort to my heart and hope to my spirit. And help me experience the deep peace of the Christ Child this Christmas and always.
In his name I pray, Amen.