Monday, December 17, 2018

Advent A to Z

R - Reindeer
Read Psalm 139:13-14

Dasher and Dancer, and Prancer and Vixen, Comet and Cupid, and Donder and Blitzen ... and Rudolph of course. I know all their names. But except for Rudolph, I don't think I could tell them apart. In the pictures I see one reindeer looks pretty much like the other. Is that how you see people? Like reindeer? Are we so much alike that one of us could be another one, with only different names? No, I don't think so. You know who I am, don't you? You know me by name, but more than that - you know me! You know what makes me different from everybody else and you love me all by myself. Even without antlers I am very special in your sight.

Sunday, December 16, 2018

Advent A to Z

Q - Quiet
Read Matthew 27:11-14

"Quiet" they yell at me, often very loudly, and sometimes when I didn't know that I was being loud... or when I was excited and I had something special to say or do or ask or when I was just happy. You know that too, don't you? There was a time when you were quiet too, and it was hard, when they told lies about you or wanted you to come down from the cross. But you kept quiet then, and suffered there for them and for me too, didn't you? So please help me keep quiet too, when I should; help me to listen and obey, to learn and grow. But when I ought to speak out, help me then too!

Saturday, December 15, 2018

Advent A to Z

P - Peek
Read 1 John 1:7

I'm not supposed to peek. There are a lot of things I'm not supposed to do, people are not always telling me, "don't do this" and "don't do that" and now peeking is one more of them. O God, sometimes it's hard not to do what I am not supposed to do, especially when what I'm not supposed to do is as tempting as peeking. Sometimes it's far more serious, too, like when it has to do with disobeying, especially when that's disobeying you! Forgive me, Lord, for Jesus' sake, the things I've done that I was not supposed to do. Wash me clean from every sin, and help me then, by your own Spirit's power, to do the things I should as your dear child and not to do the things I shouldn't do. Even peeking!

Friday, December 14, 2018

Advent A to Z

O - Old
Read Luke 2:25-32

Sometimes I want to be older than I am. Older people have more fun, I think; they are able to do more things than I can. But then I see some people who are really old, and I begin to wonder. They can't run the way I do, or play all day without getting tired and having to stop. Sometimes they have to  live in wheelchairs, or nursing homes, or hospital beds. And they don't always remember very well or sometimes they remember more than what I wanted to know. Lord, if older people are there to help me when I need it is there something I can do for them, maybe just one special one of them especially at Christmas?

Thursday, December 13, 2018

Advent A to Z

N - Night
Read Luke 2:8

"Silent night" the famous carol says: "O Holy Night," says another one and then "While Shepherds watched their Flocks by Night," "It Came Upon the Midnight Clear." Normally night is a time for sleeping, a time to say my prayers and close my eyes and trust you, Lord, to keep me safe until the morning comes. At Christmas, though, it's different. The day is special, that is true, but on that day the night is too, because that night was filled with you! Because you came that holy night, now every night is filled with you. You stay awake the whole night through, protecting me, so I can do the things that I have sung to you: "Sleep in heavenly peace."

Wednesday, December 12, 2018

Advent A to Z

M - Mary
Read Luke 1:34-38

In almost all the Christmas pictures that I see Mary, Your Mother, is smiling - usually not a great big grin but just a gentle kind of smile that seems to say that she was happy - more than that, that she was honored to be chosen for so great a task, to be the mother of the Lord, to care for you and watch you grow and help you grow till you become a man. That smile says a lot about her attitude. "I am the handmaid of the Lord," she told the angel once. And was she smiling then, surprised and honored as she must have been? That smile says a lot about her attitude. It says a lot about you too, and what it means to trust the Lord in everything and serve you faithfully, with a smile. I am your servant too, O Lord! Help me to serve you with trusting faith, and with a smile.

Tuesday, December 11, 2018

Advent A to Z

K is for Kris Kringle
Read Philippians 2:9-11

Kris Kringle ... Santa Claus.. Saint Nicholas ... Father Christmas... in some parts of the world Pere Noel ... they're all different names but they all stand for the same thing, and when people use them, they know what they mean. Jesus, Savior, Our Redeemer, Prince of Peace, King of Kings, Lord and Master, Teacher, Helper, Great High Priest and "what a friend" are all different names too. When I think of Santa Clause I have a pretty good picture in my mind. But when I think of you, Lord, sometimes I get mixed up. I see you as a baby in the manger and then as a grown man later, dying on the cross, then bright shining, rising from the grave. It's all the same, isn't it? Whatever name, whatever picture, your love is the same.

Devotional by Arden Mead