New every morning is your love, great God of light, and all day long you are working for good in the world. Stir up in us desire to serve you, to live peacefully with our neighbors and all your creation, and to devote each day to your Son, our Savior Jesus Christ. Amen.

"A Liturgy for Morning Prayer," Upper Room Worshipbook

Used by permission from the Book of Common Worship, © 2018 Westminster John Knox Press. All rights reserved. This prayer appears in “A Liturgy for Morning Prayer” in Upper Room Worshipbook.


Today’s Reflection

Advent and Christmas are both musically rich seasons. Many churches struggle each year, trying to decide the proper time to start singing Christmas carols versus Advent hymns. Do we lose the mystery of God’s current presence and the wonder at God’s return to us if we jump too early to Christmas carols? However, Christmas music is some of the most beautiful music we have. If we limit this music to just the twelve days of Christmas, it hardly seems fair.

—Max O. Vincent, Good News of Great Joy: Advent Reflections on the Songs of Luke (Upper Room Books, 2021)

Today’s Question

When does your congregation start singing Christmas carols? Join the conversation.

Today’s Scripture

Then an angel of the Lord stood before [the shepherds], and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were terrified. But the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid; for see—I am bringing you good news of great joy for all the people: to you is born this day in the city of David a Savior, who is the Messiah, the Lord.”
—Luke 2:9-11 (NRSV)

Prayer for the Week

O come to us, abide with us,
Our Lord, Emmanuel. Amen.
Submit your prayer to The Upper Room.

Something More

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Lectionary Readings

(Courtesy of Vanderbilt Divinity Library)

Looking for lectionary-based resources? Learn more about The Upper Room Disciplines.


  • robert moeller Posted November 29, 2021 7:51 am

    Acknowledging that as Christians Christ is always with us, I see every reason to sing Christmas carols when Advent begins. We sang O Little Town of Bethlehem Sunday. I will not be diverted, distracted and catch up with all of you right after this post. I certainly miss hearing what is happening in your lives. You are part of the story. Thank You, Lord.

  • Julie Posted November 29, 2021 8:12 am

    Since this is my first Christmas and Advent season with my new/old church I do not know.
    Spent a good day by myself yesterday at church then shopping. I am constantly consumed with worry so today’s UR Devotional was a good and timely one for me to heed. Tomorrow I see the surgeon a nd hopefully the stitches are removed and all is well.
    Prayers for Ally and David as they anxiously await another doctor’s appointment and PSA results. Prayers for Jeremy kitty that the antibiotic and pain meds heal his URI. Prayers for Jill and her students as they have a few weeks left until winter break and may Roger’s new insulin levels reduce his blood sugar. Prayers for safe travel for Lou’s daughter. Prayers for Robert and Erich and their relationship. Prayers for Marti and her staff.
    Thankyou for your prayers and may God bless all who visit here.

  • Ally Posted November 29, 2021 10:12 am

    The churches I have been involved with including our current congregation, have interspersed Christmas carols with Advent hymns. I love to sing and love the music of Christmas, so I like the opportunity to sing as many as possible in worship.
    I spoke with Jeremy’s vet about an hour ago. He is doing ok: eating and drinking well, but still straining over the litter box. He doesn’t have a blockage, but vet wants him to get the strong antibiotics and be where she can monitor him in case he should develop a blockage, so she can intervene quickly. He will stay until at least tomorrow. Dr. Valerie is very cautious, so I sort of expected this. We are thankful he is where he needs to be. Thanks so much for your prayers.
    Robert, prayers continue for your church and for you and Erich. Looking forward to catching up with you. Julie, I too am a worrier and today’s UR meditation resonated with me as well. Praying as you meet with surgeon and that you are healing well. Prayers for Jill and little Roger as they make adjustments to his insulin. Praying for you Jill as your semester winds downs. Glad your time with family was good.
    I pray for our world as we deal with a new variant. Be safe, everyone. Blessings to all.

  • robert moeller Posted November 29, 2021 10:27 am

    Travel – Jill to FL to visit here sister and Dad, Lou’s children home for Thanksgiving, Healing/health – Julie stitches out tomorrow, David’s SA blood work results, Pets – Roger insulin treatment for diabetes, Jeremy for UTI. Spiritual growth – the saints in the lives of this faith community who have and continue to help us on our journey. Very thankful for them. The future – Julie’s legal issues, the new virus variants, school, health, children.
    Erich pesters me daily about my faith, the bible says we should count it as a blessing. I was very delighted that the first advent worship went well. Thank You, Lord. Am searching for the screws to use in attaching the couplers to the model. The body is now attached to the chassis and just a few details need to be added to complete the model. The hockey team won its second game. Had a good Ft with my daughter, some change in plans, but still very doable. The print size here is becoming harder to read and type. Otherwise I am doing fine. A new month will be here soon.
    ThankYou, Lord

  • Jill Posted November 29, 2021 11:11 am

    The only Christmas music part of yesterday’s service was O Come, O Come Emmanuel. I love that song. It seems I am drawn to the less “typical” Christmas carols…some of my favorites are O Holy Night, What Child is This?
    While dad was in Florida – he decided he wants to snowbird with my sister and her husband and the three of them decided to become a single unit household. Dad will sell his condo hear and purchase a villa there – they will snowbird for about 6 months and live at my sister and brother-in-law’s home about 35 minutes south from my house during the warmer Ohio months. I think he thinks I am upset by this. But it actually brings me great comfort that he will be with my sister virtually year round. It takes a lot of pressure off of me (self-induced) when she is in Florida. He is very lonely and that is partly the impetus for this. I am grateful to my brother-in-law for agreeing to this. He gets to return to his first Florida residence city – which he has longed for – and will have a nice new villa, as opposed to a double wide. It’s pretty much win-win for all. My sister, too, is thrilled to be returning to their original area of residence in Florida. It sounded like it might not happen, but they got a call from the realtor yesterday – and things are in motion. I think it is pretty much a done deal and likely will finalize in January.
    I called Roger’s numbers into the vet – I will likely get a return call from the doctor tomorrow, as she is not in today.

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