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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

Today’s Reflection

CONSIDER THE ways in which you have experienced God’s light during this season. Where have you experienced elation when you were tired, discouraged, or worn out? How have others lifted you toward the light of God? What signs have marked your journey, reassuring you that you are on God’s path?

Each day, take another step into the light. Christ has already prepared the way.

—Todd Outcalt, Blue Christmas: Devotions of Light in a Season of Darkness (Upper Room Books, 2018)

Today’s Question

Spend some time reflecting on the questions above.  Share your thoughts.

Today’s Scripture

“In him was life, and the life was the light of all people. The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not overcome it.”
—John 1:4-5 (NRSV)

Prayer for the Week

God of Light, be my hope in this season. Submit your prayer to The Upper Room .

Something More

The Staff of The Upper Room invites you to join us for a virtual “Blue Christmas” worship service, also known as the “Longest Night” service. This service is especially designed to give voice and hope to those who are grieving or who are experiencing loss. Click here to watch the video and be sure to share it with a friend.

Lectionary Readings

(Courtesy of Vanderbilt Divinity Library)

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

Sponsored by The Upper Room. Copyright © 2019 | PO Box 340004 | Nashville, TN 37203-0004 | USA

11 Comments

  • Jill Posted December 7, 2019 6:22 am

    What I journaled this morning addressed most of those questions above. His hands and feet who have joined me during this season of my life – undoubtedly people who were obedient to the nudging of the Holy Spirit and entered my sorrow. When there was no light – others illuminated my way. When I could not pray – others prayed words that should have been mine. When tears flowed, others carefully and lovingly held me and wiped them away.
    Tomorrow I will be attending a “hope and remembrance” service at one of the churches where I attend a cancer support group. One of the people mentioned above will accompany me, continuing to hold me up.
    Today my great nephew’s and god-son’s team has a game. My sister, her husband, dad and I are going and then to lunch to celebrate my brother-in-law’s birthday. Again, where there used to be five, there is now four. I know we did this this summer with my sister’s birthday – but today seems more impactful – likely an awareness of the holidays.
    O Immanuel – God with us – be our comfort today.

  • robert moeller Posted December 7, 2019 6:45 am

    Where have you experienced elation when you were tired, discouraged, or worn out? A life insurance policy that will provide a place to live is forthcoming.
    How have others lifted you toward the light of God? The prayers of the UR family are a great help. I am very thankful for them.
    What signs have marked your journey, reassuring you that you are on God’s path? The comments by UR and Bible study members are signs. Perhaps too the nativity scene in my room. On Monday I see my counselor.

    Prayers for Mary’s mission trip; Larry, Jill, and Becky, Julie’s new treatment for her hands, a safe environment for Julie and Megan, Lou and children together for Christmas, Connie’s health, Andrea and Lowell, Andrea’s daughter and grandson, April; Betsy, her husband, Kelsey, and Harrison, and especially Marcy with insurance and health concerns.

    Marcy, my Swanton VT Central Vermont train station model is nearing completion and the German layout has trains running. There are plans for a ruined castle on a hill, a brickyard served by the railroad, and a station from a town where my family once lived. It’s an Era I, 1912 focused, layout with a house and barn representing the homestead my great-grandfather left, and where his sister still lived.

    Blessings as the second Sunday in Advent approaches.

    • Marcy Posted December 7, 2019 3:39 pm

      Robert, thank you for mentioning just the thing to lift my spirits today! Trains are a reminder of my beloved Dad, and at the same time, warm my heart with memories. Without a helper, I am stuck at home, too many things I cannot do on my own. I am praying for you, Robert, and am thankful for your prayers. Medicaid was re-instated, but does not pay for the oxygen company or my helper, so I am thankful that God answered my prayers to be able to afford my medicines. No therapy is covered either, at this time of year when I am most in need of it. I am grateful for believing in God; otherwise all would surely be lost. I am grateful for His love for everyone who believes in Him. Thank You, Lord. ❤❤

  • Mary Ng Shwu Ling Posted December 7, 2019 7:04 am

    Thanks Robert and upper room friends! You have lifted me toward the light of God through your prayers and loving kindness.

    Also, friends and neighbors. This morning as I was coming back from my walk, I met a neighbor. We stopped to catch up with each other and I was touched that she said she will be keeping me in prayer.

    Thank you God for blessing us with people who lifted us and showed your love and light.

    May we also lift others toward God’s light!

  • Julie Posted December 7, 2019 8:23 am

    Unlike Jill I have no one in my life with whom I can share my pain. But like Robert and Mary, I am lifted toward the light by the prayers and kind words shared here among this UR group of friends.
    I contributed to a toy drive and the kind officer who will be one of those distributing the gifts gave me a warm hug. That kindness meant the world to me and still brings tears to my eyes. He also gave me directions to a Methodist church that would be accessible to me.
    Prayers for Jill, Larry, Becky and her husband, may they enjoy their lunch celebration and not have it shadowed with sorrow.
    Prayers for Robert. Prayers of thanksgiving for thr long awaited counselling to begin.
    Prayers for Mary and her continued warmth for all she meets.
    Prayers for all the new posters who remind me that many more eyes see my words than I am aware of.
    Prayers for Marcy and may she have oxygen restored sooner than January.
    Prayers and thank you UR

    • Marcy Posted December 7, 2019 3:51 pm

      Thank you for your prayers, Julie. You are always in mine and as always, I remember when I first came here and confided in you. I am fighting the blues again this year, but I’m grateful I can still pray. There are days it is difficult, but once I begin, off I go, into God’s loving acceptance. Where would I be without Him? I don’t even want to think about it! I now have a painting of Jesus in my bedroom and I pray to Him each morning, envisioning His Love for us all, no matter our mood…or in spite of our mood! Lucy, my ginger tabby girl, is my constant companion and family member and even my consoler. Prayers for Megan and for Chai and Tazzie. Did someone have kittens?

  • Connie Posted December 7, 2019 9:57 am

    I have had much support lately and for that I am thankful. I have angels all around me, including UR prayer warriors.
    Julie, you can always share your pain-I am listening even though it doesn’t seem like it.
    Yes, “The light shines in the darkness”. “The star, the star, shining in the night will bring us goodness and light”

  • Marcy Posted December 7, 2019 3:56 pm

    I am struggling to get through December, as without my portable oxygen tanks, I am unable to go out at all. As I try to focus on Advent and waiting, I remind myself that renewal is coming in the celebration of the birth of our Savior, Jesus Christ. May God be with all who are struggling and also with those who experience health, happiness and harmony. Love and prayers to all!

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

    • Connie Posted December 8, 2019 1:57 pm

      Oh, how we love you Marcy.

  • Rick Posted December 7, 2019 5:29 pm

    As I considered the question my heart was deeply touched by Jill’s post. Her words touched me and warmed my heart. This season has had elation and I have been tired and very discouraged and worn out as well. I returned to school this fall at 57 and it’s been many years since I last attended school. While I never dreamed I would be able to finish my degree this is where I see God’s hand and where crooked paths were made straight; the elation of being back in school. I quickly learned that I had to learn new study habits and it would require far more of my time than I expected. My professors and classmates were a huge help and support along with campus resources. I saw in Julie’s post, that while I showed up it was because of others that I was able to get here. As a recovered Alcoholic it was because of the help and support of my 12 step program and working with others. It was my work as a Lay Minister and Stephen’s Minister at my local church and being of service to others especially when I didn’t think I was worthy of God’s love. I’m retired from military service and I’m a LVN. I have had a lot of work to do with PTSD from War over the years. Its not always been easy but God has placed amazing men and women in my life. It is because of there love and support and inspiration and prayers guiding me and holding me up thought it all that I am here today. The last few weeks have been the toughest for me. My partner and husband of 23 years awaits more test results to see if his cancer has returned. We wait in expectancy with Hope and Love. I know that God is always with me and that I am never alone. I have been following all of your stories for some time and you are all Warriors. You have been a great source of light and hope in my life especially in this season. I truly believe its in the giving that ones gets the most joy in life. Blessing and Prayers to all.

  • darr sigilman Posted December 11, 2019 8:52 pm

    Whenever I have felt down and out I have found that God’s word(The Bible)has always helped me and from surfing the internet I have found
    that church web sites have always been A great comfort as well.

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