Tuesday morning December 20

Wednesday morning
Monday morning


Opening response

Lord, open our lips
and our mouth will proclaim your praise.

Reveal among us the light of your presence
that we may behold your power and glory.

Prayer of thanksgiving

Blessed are you, Sovereign God of all,
to you be praise and glory forever.
In your tender compassion
the dawn from on high is breaking upon us
to dispel the lingering shadows of night.
As we look for your coming among us this day,
open our eyes to behold your presence
and strengthen our hands to do your will,
that the world may rejoice and give you praise.
Blessed be God: Father, Son and Holy Spirit.
Blessed be God forever.

The night has passed, and the day lies open before us;
let us pray with one heart and mind.

Silence is kept.

As we rejoice in the gift of this new day,
so may the light of your presence, O God,
set our hearts on fire with love for you;
now and forever.


With Glorious Clouds Encompassed Round

Charles Wesley
With glorious clouds encompassed round,
Whom angels dimly see,
Will the Unsearchable be found,
Or God appear to me?

Will he forsake his throne above,
Himself to worms impart?
Answer, thou Man of grief and love,
And speak it to my heart.

Didst thou not in our flesh appear,
And live and die below,
That I may now perceive thee near,
And my redeemer know?

Come, then, and to my soul reveal
The heights and depths of grace,
Those wounds which all my sorrows heal,
Which all my sins efface.

Then shall I see in his own light,
Whom angels dimly see:
And gaze, transported at the sight,
To all eternity.

Confession of sin

The Lord is compassionate and merciful,
very patient, and full of faithful love.
He doesn’t deal with us according to our sin
or repay us according to our wrongdoing.
Because as high as heaven is above the earth,
that’s how large God’s faithful love is for those who honor him.

Silence is kept for reflection.

Holy God,
Holy and strong,
Holy and immortal,
have mercy upon us.

As far as east is from west—
that’s how far God has removed our sin from us.

As a father has compassion on his children,
that’s how the Lord feels compassion for those who honor him.

Let my whole being bless the Lord.
Let everything inside me bless his holy name.

Let my whole being bless the Lord,
and never forget all his good deeds.

The Word of God

Psalm 46

God is our refuge and strength,
    a help always near in times of great trouble.
That’s why we won’t be afraid when the world falls apart,
    when the mountains crumble into the center of the sea,
    when its waters roar and rage,
    when the mountains shake because of its surging waves.
There is a river whose streams gladden God’s city,
    the holiest dwelling of the Most High.
God is in that city. It will never crumble.
    God will help it when morning dawns.
Nations roar; kingdoms crumble.
    God utters his voice; the earth melts.
The Lord of heavenly forces is with us!
    The God of Jacob is our place of safety.
Come, see the Lord’s deeds,
    what devastation he has imposed on the earth—
    bringing wars to an end in every corner of the world,
    breaking the bow and shattering the spear,
        burning chariots with fire.
“That’s enough! Now know that I am God!
    I am exalted among all nations; I am exalted throughout the world!”
The Lord of heavenly forces is with us!
    The God of Jacob is our place of safety.

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.

Psalm prayer

God of Jacob,
when the earth shakes
and the nations are in uproar,
speak, and let the storm be still;
through Jesus Christ our Lord.

Psalm 95

Come, let’s worship and bow down!

Come, let’s sing out loud to the Lord!
    Let’s raise a joyful shout to the rock of our salvation!
Let’s come before him with thanks!
    Let’s shout songs of joy to him!
The Lord is a great God,
    the great king over all other gods.
The earth’s depths are in his hands;
    the mountain heights belong to him;
    the sea, which he made, is his
        along with the dry ground,
        which his own hands formed.
Come, let’s worship and bow down!
    Let’s kneel before the Lord, our maker!
He is our God,
    and we are the people of his pasture,
    the sheep in his hands.
If only you would listen to his voice right now!
    “Don’t harden your hearts
    like you did at Meribah,
    like you did when you were at Massah,
        in the wilderness,
    when your ancestors tested me
        and scrutinized me,
    even though they had already seen my acts.
For forty years I despised that generation;
    I said, ‘These people have twisted hearts.
    They don’t know my ways.’
So in anger I swore:
    ‘They will never enter my place of rest!’”

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.

Come, let’s worship and bow down!

Psalm prayer

Lord God, the maker of all,
as we bow down in praise this day,
make us attentive to your voice
and do not test us beyond our enduring;
through Jesus Christ our Lord.

Old Testament reading
Isaiah 54

Sing, barren woman who has borne no child;
    break forth into singing and cry out,
        you who were never in labor,
    for the children of the wife who has been deserted will be more numerous than the children of the married, says the Lord.
Enlarge the site of your tent,
    and stretch out the drapes of your dwellings;
    don’t hold back.
    Lengthen your tent ropes and strengthen your stakes.
    To the right and to the left you will burst out,
    and your children will possess the nations’ land
    and settle their desolate cities.

Don’t fear,
    because you won’t be ashamed;
    don’t be dismayed,
    because you won’t be disgraced.
You will forget the shame of your youth;
    you’ll no longer remember the disgrace of your widowhood.
The one marrying you is the one who made you—
    the Lord of heavenly forces is his name.
The one redeeming you is the holy one of Israel,
    the one called the God of all the earth.
As an abandoned and dejected woman the Lord has summoned you;
    as a young wife when she is rejected,
        says your God.
For a brief moment I abandoned you,
    but with great mercy I will bring you back.
    In an outburst of rage,
    I hid my face from you for a moment,
    but with everlasting love I have consoled you,
    says your redeemer, the Lord.

These are like the days of Noah for me,
    when I promised that Noah’s waters would never again cover the earth.
    Likewise I promise not to rage against you or rebuke you.
The mountains may shift,
    and the hills may be shaken,
    but my faithful love won’t shift from you,
    and my covenant of peace won’t be shaken,
    says the Lord, the one who pities you.

Suffering one, storm-tossed, uncomforted,
    look, I am setting your gemstones
    in silvery metal
    and your foundations with sapphires.
I will make your towers of rubies,
    and your gates of beryl,
    and all your walls of precious jewels.
    All your children will be disciples of the Lord—
    I will make peace abound for your children.
You will be firmly founded in righteousness.
    You will stay far from oppression because you won’t fear,
    far from terror because it won’t come near you.
If anyone attacks you, it’s none of my doing.
    Whoever attacks you will fall because of you.
Look, I myself created the metalworker who blows the fire of coal and who produces a tool for his work.
    And I myself created the looter to destroy.
No weapon fashioned against you will succeed,
    and you may condemn every tongue that disputes with you.
This is the heritage of the Lord’s servants,
    whose righteousness comes from me, says the Lord.

Silence may be kept.

New Testament reading
2 Peter 1:6-2:3

We didn’t repeat crafty myths when we told you about the powerful coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. Quite the contrary, we witnessed his majesty with our own eyes. He received honor and glory from God the Father when a voice came to him from the magnificent glory, saying, “This is my dearly loved Son, with whom I am well-pleased.” We ourselves heard this voice from heaven while we were with him on the holy mountain. In addition, we have a most reliable prophetic word, and you would do well to pay attention to it, just as you would to a lamp shining in a dark place, until the day dawns and the morning star rises in your hearts. Most important, you must know that no prophecy of scripture represents the prophet’s own understanding of things, because no prophecy ever came by human will. Instead, men and women led by the Holy Spirit spoke from God.

But false prophets also arose among the people. In the same way, false teachers will come among you. They will introduce destructive opinions and deny the master who bought them, bringing quick destruction on themselves. Many will follow them in their unrestrained immorality, and because of these false teachers the way of truth will be slandered. In their greed they will take advantage of you with lies. The judgment pronounced against them long ago hasn’t fallen idle, nor is their destruction sleeping.

Silence may be kept.

Gospel canticle
The Benedictus (The Song of Zechariah)

Like the sun in the morning sky, the Savior of the world will dawn; like rain upon the meadows, the Christ will come down upon us.

Bless the Lord God of Israel
because he has come to help and has delivered his people.
He has raised up a mighty savior for us in his servant David’s house,
just as he said through the mouths of his holy prophets long ago.
He has brought salvation from our enemies
and from the power of all those who hate us.
He has shown the mercy promised to our ancestors,
and remembered his holy covenant,
the solemn pledge he made to our ancestor Abraham.
He has granted that we would be rescued
from the power of our enemies
so that we could serve him without fear,
in holiness and righteousness in God’s eyes,
for as long as we live.
You, child, will be called a prophet of the Most High,
for you will go before the Lord to prepare his way.
You will tell his people how to be saved
through the forgiveness of their sins.
Because of our God’s deep compassion,
the dawn from heaven will break upon us,
to give light to those who are sitting in darkness
and in the shadow of death,
to guide us on the path of peace.”

Luke 1:68-79

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.

Like the sun in the morning sky, the Savior of the world will dawn; like rain upon the meadows, the Christ will come down upon us.  

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.


Intercession and thanksgiving

Prayers may be offered for:

the day and its tasks
the world and its needs
the church and her life

Other intercessions and supplications may be offered as the Holy Spirit leads.


Lord, hear your people
and answer our prayers.

Silence may be kept.

Collect of the day

God our redeemer,
who prepared the Blessed Virgin Mary
to be the mother of your Son:
grant that, as she looked for his coming as our savior,
so we may be ready to greet him
when he comes again as our judge;
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.