Wednesday evening December 2

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Opening response

O God, make speed to save us.
O Lord, make haste to help us.
Reveal among us the light of your presence
that we may behold your power and glory.

Prayer of thanksgiving

Blessed are you, Sovereign God,
creator of light and darkness,
to you be glory and praise forever.
As evening falls, you renew your promise
to reveal among us the light of your presence.
May your word be a lantern to our feet
and a light upon our path
that we may behold your coming among us.
Strengthen us in our stumbling weakness
and free our tongues to sing your praise.
Blessed be God: Father, Son and Holy Spirit.
Blessed be God forever.


Saw Ye Not the Cloud Arise

Charles Wesley
Saw ye not the cloud arise,
Little as the human hand?
Now it spreads along the skies,
Hangs over all the thirsty land.

Lo! the promise of a shower
Drops already from above,
But the Lord will shortly pour
All the Spirit of his love.

When he first the work begun
Small and feeble was his day,
Now the word doth swiftly run,
Now it wins its widening way;

More and more it spreads and grows,
Ever mighty to prevail;
Sin's strongholds it now overthrows,
Shakes the trembling gates of hell.

Sons of God your Savior praise,
He a door hath opened wide
He hath given the word of grace,
Jesus’ word is glorified.

Jesus mighty to redeem,
He alone the work hath wrought,
Worthy is the work of him,
Him who spoke a world from naught.

Confession of sin

Seek the Lord when he can still be found;
call him while he is yet near.
Let the wicked abandon their ways
and the sinful their schemes.
Let them return to the Lord so that he may have mercy on them,
to our God, because he is generous with forgiveness.

cf Isaiah 55

A time of silence and self-examination may be kept.

Lord God,
we have sinned against you;
we have committed evil in your sight.
We are sorry and repent.
Have mercy on us according to your faithful love.
Wash us completely clean of our guilt; purify us from our sin.
Put a new, faithful spirit deep inside us,
and return the joy of your salvation to us
through Jesus Christ our Lord.

cf Psalm 51

May the Father of all mercies
cleanse us from our sins,
and restore us in his image
to the praise and glory of his name,
through Jesus Christ our Lord.

Bless the Lord,
because he has listened to our request for mercy.
Therefore our hearts will rejoice
and we will thank him with our song.

cf Psalm 28:7,9

The Word of God

Psalm 76

The Lord has made fast his throne for judgment.

God is known in Judah;
    his name is great in Israel.
His dwelling place became Salem;
    his habitation was Zion.
It was there that he broke the fiery shafts of the bow,
    the shield, the sword—even the battle itself!
You are ablaze with light,
    mightier than the mountains that give food.
The bravehearted lie plundered.
    They sank into deep lethargy.
    All the strong troops
    couldn’t even lift their hands!
At your rebuke, Jacob’s God,
    both chariot and horse were stopped dead-still.
You! You are awesome!
    Who can stand before you when you are angry?
You have announced judgment from heaven.
    The earth grew afraid and fell silent
    when God rose up to establish justice,
    when God rose up to save all of the earth’s poor.
Even human rage will turn to your praise
    when you dress yourself
    with whatever remains of your wrath.
Make promises to the Lord your God and keep them!
    Let all around him bring gifts to the awesome one.
He breaks the spirit of princes.
    He is terrifying to all the kings of the earth.

Glory to the Father and to the Son
and to the Holy Spirit;
as it was in the beginning is now
and will be forever. Amen.

The Lord has made fast his throne for judgment.

Psalm prayer

Majestic and gracious God,
more awesome than the agents of war,
more powerful than the wrath of nations,
restrain the violence of the peoples
and draw the despised of the earth
into the joyful life of your kingdom,
where you live and reign forever and ever.

Psalm 77

In the day of my trouble I have sought the Lord.

I cry out loud to God—
    out loud to God so that he can hear me!
During the day when I’m in trouble I look for my Lord.
    At night my hands are still outstretched and don’t grow numb;
        my whole being refuses to be comforted.
I remember God and I moan.
    I complain, and my spirit grows tired. 
You’ve kept my eyelids from closing.
    I’m so upset I can’t even speak.
I think about days long past;
    I remember years that seem an eternity in the past.
I meditate with my heart at night;
    I complain, and my spirit keeps searching:
“Will my Lord reject me forever?
    Will he never be pleased again?
Has his faithful love come to a complete end?
    Is his promise over for future generations?
Has God forgotten how to be gracious?
    Has he angrily stopped up his compassion?” 
It’s my misfortune, I thought,
    that the strong hand of the Most High is different now.
But I will remember the Lord’s deeds;
    yes, I will remember your wondrous acts from times long past.
I will meditate on all your works;
    I will ponder your deeds.
God, your way is holiness!
    Who is as great a god as you, God?
You are the God who works wonders;
    you have demonstrated your strength among all peoples.
With your mighty arm you redeemed your people;
    redeemed the children of Jacob and Joseph. 
The waters saw you, God—
    the waters saw you and reeled!
        Even the deep depths shook!
The clouds poured water,
    the skies cracked thunder;
        your arrows were flying all around!
The crash of your thunder was in the swirling storm;
    lightning lit up the whole world;
        the earth shook and quaked.
Your way went straight through the sea;
    your pathways went right through the mighty waters.
        But your footprints left no trace!
You led your people like sheep
    under the care of Moses and Aaron.

Glory to the Father and to the Son
and to the Holy Spirit;
as it was in the beginning is now
and will be forever. Amen.

In the day of my trouble I have sought the Lord.

Psalm prayer

God our shepherd,
you led us and saved us in times of old;
do not forget your people in their troubles,
but raise up your power
to sustain the poor and helpless;
for the honor of Jesus Christ our Lord.

Old Testament reading
Isaiah 43:14-28

The Lord your redeemer,
    the holy one of Israel, says,
For your sake, I have sent an army to Babylon,
    and brought down all the bars,
    turning the Chaldeans’ singing into a lament.
I am the Lord, your holy one,
    Israel’s creator, your king!
The Lord says—who makes a way in the sea
    and a path in the mighty waters,
    who brings out chariot and horse,
    army and battalion;
    they will lie down together and will not rise;
    they will be extinguished, extinguished like a wick.
Don’t remember the prior things;
    don’t ponder ancient history.
Look! I’m doing a new thing;
    now it sprouts up; don’t you recognize it?
I’m making a way in the desert,
    paths in the wilderness.
The beasts of the field,
        the jackals and ostriches, will honor me,
    because I have put water in the desert
    and streams in the wilderness
    to give water to my people,
    my chosen ones,
    this people whom I formed for myself,
        who will recount my praise.
But you didn’t call out to me, Jacob;
    you were tired of me, Israel.
You didn’t bring me lambs for your entirely burned offering;
    you didn’t honor me with your sacrifices.
I didn’t make you worship with offerings;
    I didn’t weary you with frankincense.
You didn’t buy spices for me with your money,
    or satisfy me with the fat of your sacrifices.
Instead, you have burdened me with your sins
    and wearied me with your evil actions.
I, I am the one who wipes out your rebellious behavior for my sake. I won’t remember your sin.
Summon me, and let’s go to trial together;
    you tell your story so that you may be vindicated!
Your first ancestor sinned,
    and your officials rebelled against me.
So I made the holy officials impure,
    handed over Jacob to destruction and Israel to abuse.

Silence may be kept.

New Testament reading
Revelation 21:1-8

Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth, for the former heaven and the former earth had passed away, and the sea was no more. I saw the holy city, New Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, made ready as a bride beautifully dressed for her husband. I heard a loud voice from the throne say, “Look! God’s dwelling is here with humankind. He will dwell with them, and they will be his peoples. God himself will be with them as their God. He will wipe away every tear from their eyes. Death will be no more. There will be no mourning, crying, or pain anymore, for the former things have passed away.” Then the one seated on the throne said, “Look! I’m making all things new.” He also said, “Write this down, for these words are trustworthy and true.” Then he said to me, “All is done. I am the Alpha and the Omega, the beginning and the end. To the thirsty I will freely give water from the life-giving spring. Those who emerge victorious will inherit these things. I will be their God, and they will be my sons and daughters. But for the cowardly, the faithless, the vile, the murderers, those who commit sexual immorality, those who use drugs and cast spells, the idolaters and all liars—their share will be in the lake that burns with fire and sulfur. This is the second death.”

Silence may be kept.

Gospel canticle
The Magnificat (The Song of Mary)

Lord Jesus, you are the one who is to come, the one whom we await with longing hearts.

With all my heart I glorify the Lord!
In the depths of who I am I rejoice in God my savior.
He has looked with favor on the low status of his servant.
Look! From now on, everyone will consider me highly favored
because the mighty one has done great things for me.
Holy is his name.
He shows mercy to everyone,
from one generation to the next,
who honors him as God.
He has shown strength with his arm.
He has scattered those with arrogant thoughts and proud inclinations.
He has pulled the powerful down from their thrones
and lifted up the lowly.
He has filled the hungry with good things
and sent the rich away empty-handed.
He has come to the aid of his servant Israel,
remembering his mercy, 
just as he promised to our ancestors, 
to Abraham and to Abraham’s descendants forever.

Luke 1:46-55

Glory to the Father and to the Son
and to the Holy Spirit;
as it was in the beginning is now
and will be forever. Amen.

Lord Jesus, you are the one who is to come, the one whom we await with longing hearts.

Brief silence

The Apostle’s Creed

Let us unite in this historic confession of the Christian faith:

I believe in God, the Father Almighty,
creator of heaven and earth.

I believe in Jesus Christ, his only Son, our Lord,
who was conceived by the Holy Spirit,
born of the Virgin Mary,
suffered under Pontius Pilate,
was crucified, died, and was buried;
he descended to the dead.
On the third day he rose again;
he ascended into heaven,
is seated at the right hand of the Father,
and will come again to judge the living and the dead.

I believe in the Holy Spirit,
the holy catholic church,
the communion of saints,
the forgiveness of sins,
the resurrection of the body,
and the life everlasting. Amen.


Thanksgiving and intercession

Thanksgiving may be made for the day.
Intercessions are offered
for peace
for individuals and their needs


Father, hear our prayer,
through Jesus Christ our Lord.

Silence may be kept.

Collect of the day

Almighty God,
give us grace to cast away the works of darkness
and to put on the armor of light,
now in the time of this mortal life,
in which your Son Jesus Christ came to us in great humility;
that on the last day,
when he shall come again in his glorious majesty
to judge the living and the dead,
we may rise to the life immortal;
through him who is alive and reigns with you,
in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
one God, now and forever.   

The Lord’s Prayer

Awaiting his coming in glory,
as our Savior taught us, so we pray

Our Father in heaven,
hallowed be your name,
your kingdom come,
your will be done,
on earth as in heaven.
Give us today our daily bread.
Forgive us our sins
as we forgive those who sin against us.
Lead us not into temptation
but deliver us from evil.
For the kingdom, the power,
and the glory are yours
now and forever.


May the Lord, when he comes,
find us watching and waiting.