Lord, as I sit here with you, quiet the flurry of my thoughts. Help me to breathe in deeply the peace of your presence. As I slowly exhale, please release all worry and tension. Prepare me to hear you as I desire to be present with you and to you.
Pause for a moment or two and breathe in the words “Be Still and Know” (that I am God) from Psalm 46:10 It is shortened here in order to pray these words as a breath prayer. Inhale “Be still.” Exhale “and know.”
Do this for a moment or two.
Advent touches our deepest longings, our unfulfilled dreams, our pervading losses. It illuminates the empty spaces within and without. It reminds us of what we lack. It intensifies the ache within, that place within us that longs to belong. While the darkness of Advent intensifies, we walk towards the light of Christmas. Even though not yet seeing it, we walk trusting its promise.
Read the poem through a few times. Pause and reflect on a word or phrase on where you are drawn.
As the darkness permeates
It seeps into our bones
Casting a chill
It touches the deep places within
Intensifying our losses
Laying claim over
The ache of our longings,
Seemingly laying us bare
And yet we walk on
Present to what seems unbearableFor in the distance,
There shines the light
of a flickering candle
In whose glow
We find hope
And the promise
“That the light shines in the darkness
And the darkness cannot put it out.” (John 1:5)
(Poem written by Rev. Eva Sullivan-Knoff, copyright 2018)
Lord, remind us in the darkness, that it is to you that we belong. We do not walk alone. You are walk with us and are as close as our own breath. Wrap your presence around us like a blanket. May the warmth of your love embrace and comfort us for the journey. Amen.