Meditation/prayer based on Luke 1:26-31
Eternal and everlasting God
You who provide us with the miracle of the everyday, the wonder of things unseen, the mystery of life itself;
We come today humbled by the awareness of that which we do not know, the mystery of faith that surrounds us. We live in a distracted world, a place dominated by the demand for instant knowledge. We take part in social media photos, we read online comments as part of our daily routine, our minds overtaken by the latest news--true or not. Living in a hurry up world we find ourselves always somewhere else, always thinking ahead to where we need to be, called on by people who are many miles away. And so it is that we bring ourselves here this morning, in this moment, to be present with you, Oh Lord. We come to celebrate the silence of your sanctuary, the presence of friends and family, and friends yet to be. We break away from the distractions and the frantic busy world out there to be a part of a world in here with You, a quiet space where miracles happen, and anything is possible.
The angel spoke to Mary those many years ago, and pronounced the miracle of the holy birth, saying “Do not be afraid, for you have found favor with God.” The irrational becomes common sense. The miraculous lives among us. The Hope of the world is to be born among common people in a bed made of straw. Living a life bounded by technology we struggle to take this story into our lives and make it ours. We confess Oh Lord that it makes no sense, that it challenges us to the core of our scientific, rational being. And yet it draws us forward. The angel’s call to Mary that time so far away draws us back into the miracle of living in Your Spirit. The wonder of your Son’s time with us began with the call of an angel to Mary, with the baby in a manger in Bethlehem.
We are blessed this day once again with the announcement of His coming. We are so familiar with this call of the angel, yet as an old story heard for the first time, we are restored anew. We think of His words to us in the years he spent among us. How He told us to visit the sick and lonely, to heal the wounds of the leper and the lame, to visit those in prison. He showed us how to confront the scribes and Pharisees not with hatred but with love and compassion. He called us to respond to Your vision for us, and not some earthly plan. He spoke and lived out the truth that is beyond understanding, a vision of living that begins with a baby in a manger.
And so it is that we return to look at our own world today with a renewed sense of hope. We see those in our community and nursing homes who are lonely, or weak and vulnerable. We hear of the mistreatment of men and women in our prisons. We see the terrible sight of children being assaulted by our military at our nation’s borders. And we recall the words of our Savior, who tells us repeatedly: “whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.” Hearing these words we turn away from the busyness of our days, the constant striving for more, the addiction to power and control. Empowered by the miracle of the coming birth, and announcement of a new day, we begin to turn our lives once again towards You. Grant us a new found peace in this season of Advent. Give us energy to find you in the voice of a child, the needs of the hungry and homeless. As ambassadors of your love for all persons, we enter a time of expectation and hope.
For all this we ask in the Name of your Son, Jesus, who shows us the way forward. Amen.