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.

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Today’s Reflection

WHEN SHOPPING, CLEANING, planning, or worrying preoccupies us, we forget to leave space for God. When we find ourselves frazzled by chaos, filled with anger or anxiety, we can stop, turn, and look at God. This is the spiritual practice I need these days — keeping my eyes on God.

When, in the midst of my daily tasks and responsibilities, I search for the ways God is present, I am keeping my eyes on God. When I look for God in each person I meet, in each situation I encounter, I am more open to God’s Spirit working in me, shaping me into a vessel of God’s peace. Keeping my eyes on God helps me stay open to God’s transforming power and allows God to remake me into Christ’s likeness. I can then become Christ’s heart, mind, and hands in the world.

– Beth A. Richardson
The Uncluttered Heart

From pages 37-38 of The Uncluttered Heart: Making Room for God During Advent and Christmas by Beth A. Richardson. Copyright © 2009 by Upper Room Books. All rights reserved. Used by permission. Learn more about or purchase this book.

Today’s Question

What distracts you from God? Share your thoughts.

Today’s Scripture

See, I am sending my messenger to prepare the way before me, and the Lord whom you seek will suddenly come to his temple. The messenger of the covenant in whom you delight–indeed, he is coming, says the LORD of hosts.
Malachi 3:1, NRSV

This Week: Pray for those without homes. Submit your prayer to The Upper Room Living Prayer Center or share it in the comment section.

Prepare for Advent

Explore how nativity sets, Advent wreaths, candles, carols, Christmas cards, and other traditions help prepare our hearts for the God “who bends low to enter our world and our lives.” The Living Nativity, a new book and eCourse by Larry Peacock, is available now.

This week we remember: Ambrose (December 7).

Lectionary Readings

(Courtesy of Vanderbilt Divinity Library)

Sponsored by Upper Room Ministries ®. Copyright © 2018 | PO Box 340004 | Nashville, TN 37203-0004 | USA


In order to continue receiving Upper Room Daily Reflections after January 1, 2019, please confirm your subscription here.


  • Lou Posted December 3, 2018 5:34 am

    Yes the busyness of getting everything ready for Christmas sometimes distracts me- the irony of it. But my 2 children lit the advent wreath at dinner last night and did our readings and it was wonderful taking the short time to do that. I am happy that they engage with me in that wonderful tradition in our home- I know I’ve mentioned it before-
    I pray to stay focused on the meaning of this season- to give my best to God as he gave his Son for us.
    Prayers for all of the ur faithful today – it is snowing again this morning after a tiny weekend- I’m thankful for no major house issues this week- I have much work to do in the week ahead and I pray for patience as I can get frustrated with myself.
    Prayers for Connie – I hope the fall wasn’t related to our icy conditions this weekend and I pray you are not feeling the after effects. Prayers for Julie and her health and her bleak feelings- may you find the shiny silver lining in knowing that you are beloved- that God loves you and no one can ever take THAT away from you- prayers for Andrea as she loves and cares for her husband – and continues prayers for Robert, Jill, Marcy, Betsy, Sara, and April and many more. Prayers for Mary- you are a wonderful daughter to help your mother sleep- blessings on you today.
    Prayers for Hope for all here at the UR.

    • Lou Posted December 3, 2018 5:36 am

      Rainy… not tiny weekend…

  • Mary Ng Shwu Ling Posted December 3, 2018 6:50 am

    Thanks Lou!

    Yes, may we become Christ’s heart, mind, and hands in the world!

    Praying that we may keep our eyes focused on God so that we may not be easily distracted.

    Praying that Lou and all of us will always be our very best for God as He has given His best for us, His son, Jesus Christ!

    Blessings to all!

  • Betsy Posted December 3, 2018 7:18 am

    The busyness of preparation can often get in the way of us seeing the true vision of His coming. Help me to put all that aside and breath and rest in the story of Christ’s birth.
    Wonderful worship time yesterday. First Sunday in Christian calendar, a time fo hope. Emmanuel, God with us.

  • Julie Posted December 3, 2018 7:56 am

    There is little business for me. No decorating, few gifts. I used to make candy, decorate, bake, buy and wrap many gifts. But no more. I miss it all. I hope to buy a tree this weekend. Have a big new worry concerning the h. Please pray that what I fear does not come to pass. It is always good to be reminded to keep God uppermost in my mind and heart.
    Prayers for Lou not to become overwhelmed this week and to find time to relax.
    Prayers for Mary and her family. What a wonderful blessing for both Mary and her mother to need and be needed and have needs loving met.
    Prayers for Betsy and her family, her brother in particular. May his rehab go smoothly.
    Prayers for Robert and Erich. May Robert continue to enjoy good health and may Erich enjoy his job.
    Prayers for Jill and her family. Prayers Gloria continues to enjoy the Advent season.
    Prayes for Connie, may her health continue to improve. And prayers of thanks for no problems after the fall.
    Prayers for Andrea and Lowell and may Lowell’s ankle continue to do better.
    Prayers for Marcy and her companion, Mary, prayers for Shirlee and her daughter, prayers for April and her family.
    Prayers for all who rest here among this wonderful family

    • Marcy Posted December 3, 2018 5:03 pm

      I am here and praying for you, dear Julie! Weather kept the caregiver away last week and I’ve been overwhelmed with other after-effects, a stumble over the cane, blah, blah. I truly dislike whining so much. I’ve been praying for h’s bad treatment of you and Megan to cease. And pray h would leave you be. I am sending lots of Love to you and Megan, my friend! Sorry for such bleakness!

  • Julie Posted December 3, 2018 7:57 am


  • Connie Posted December 3, 2018 8:19 am

    Simple tasks that used to be easy distract me.
    The Uncluttered Heart….I used to get it regularly on line. Also, Beth sang a prayer.
    Thankful for:
    A LIGHT snow.
    A beautiful card in the mail from a stepson.
    Hopefully, a trip for groceries (many).
    No pain or limp….God worked his healing balm, for sure. This I believe.
    Have a good week. On the way to the manger!

  • robert moeller Posted December 3, 2018 11:02 am

    Found today’s reflection in the junk mail box. Better found than not seen at all. A wonderful day at church yesterday. Choir practice, setting up for fellowship time, the service with many hymns, the choir singing, COMMUNION, fellowship, and Bible study that studies Jesus’ relationship to David.

    Prayers for Connie, thankful her fall was not serious, hoping for positive news with her health; prayers for Julie’s hands and foot, the relationship with h, and job prospects for her and Megan; prayers for Andrea caring for Lowell and for Lowell’s ankle; prayers that Betsy’s brother, thankful that all is well with Lou and her family; Mary and Molly are doing well with their parents; Marcy and Mary continue to enjoy each other and Marcy gets well, may Shirley, April, and all the UR family receive the help they need. Thank You, Lord.

    Many are without homes, whether because of natural disaster or troublesome conditions in their native land. Lord, may their needs be met. Thank You, Lord.

  • Marcy Posted December 3, 2018 5:16 pm

    Hello blessed UR siblings and friends, sending many prayers and Love to you all! Praying for Robert, Erich and Annaliese; Andrea and Lowell; Jill, Becky, Gloria and Larry; Rusty and K; Lou and her children; Connie; Betsy; Shirley; Mary and Molly and their parents; Sara; Francesca; April; Pam and all of the UR Reflections family; those who are reading, and are in need and beyond.

    I am struggling mightily, overwhelmed, but continue to be thankful to our Almighty God, our Father, for the Gift of Himself to us in the Christ Child.

    Lord, please take these burdens from my heart, mind and soul, so I can be a good servant for You. Come, Jesus, come.

    Advent Peace, Hope, Joy and Love!

    And these three remain: Faith, Hope and Love, and the greatest of these is LOVE!

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