Spirit of Light,
Who comes to us like the dawning of a new day;
We ask that you enter into our hearts this morning as we begin our journey into a New Year. We have gathered with friends and family in the past week, perhaps remembering special days or events that are now memories of 2018. Celebrating our accomplishments and joys, grieving our losses and separations, we come to you this morning hopeful for the promise of the coming year.
For it is in this time of year, as the days begin their long journey towards the warmth of summer, that we recognize the coming of the Light of the World in to our lives. As the Magi from the east saw the rising star as their guide, we too will look towards the message of your Son as a light for our path. As he taught us to love one another above all else, guide us we pray in our search for that endless love. Help us to love even those with whom we disagree. Give us the wisdom to see your grace in the life of each person we meet. Let us be the means by which your light shines on our world.
Even in this bright New Year we see the presence of darkness around us. We see those who are kept from working by our national shutdown and the anguish that this brings to these workers and their families. We see in our news broadcasts the images of those seeking asylum being tear-gassed at our borders. We hear of those who are suffering of those who are harmed while standing up for justice in their communities, and we become more aware of the imperfections in our world. Grant that we might help those in need, whether they be in our community, or on some distant shore.
Give us the insight and the strength to bring kindness into our community, into the world around us. In a time of arguments and tribalism, help us to shine your light of Truth and understanding into the world, to bring hope and humility, the presence of your grace to a troubled world. Help us to listen to these words of hope and healing. May we be the light of your divine message into the world you have provided us.
For we ask this in the Name of Your Son, Jesus, who with his life and teaching showed us the way.