Wednesday morning December 7

Thursday morning
Tuesday 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.


Ah, When Shall I Awake

Charles Wesley
Ah, when shall I awake
From sin's soft-soothing power,
The slumber from my spirit shake,
And rise to fall no more!
Awake, no more to sleep,
But stand with constant care,
Looking for God my soul to keep,
And watching unto prayer!

O could I always pray?
And never, never faint,
But simply to my God display
My every care and want!
I know that thou wouldst give.
More than I can request;
Thou still art ready to receive
My soul to perfect rest.

I feel thee willing, Lord,
A sinful world to save,
All may obey thy gracious word,
May peace and pardon have;
Not one of all the race
But may return to thee,
But at the throne of sovereign grace
May fall and weep, like me.

Here will I ever lie,
And tell thee all my care,
And, “Father, Abba, Father,” cry,
And pour a ceaseless prayer;
Till thou my sins subdue,
Till thou my sins destroy,
My spirit after God renew,
And fill with peace and joy.

Messiah, Prince of peace,
Into my soul bring in
Thy everlasting righteousness,
And make an end of sin.
Into all those that seek
Redemption through thy blood
The sanctifying Spirit speak,
The plenitude of God.

Let us in patience wait
Till faith shall make us whole;
Till thou shalt all things new create
In each believing soul;
Who can resist thy will?
Speak, and it shall be done!
Thou shalt the work of faith fulfil,
And perfect us in one.

Confession of sin

Come, Holy Spirit of God,
and search our hearts with the light of Christ.

Our Lord Jesus Christ said:
The first commandment is this:
‘Israel, listen! Our God is the one Lord,
and you must love the Lord your God with all your heart,
with all your being, with all your mind,
and with all your strength.’

The second is this: ‘You must love your neighbor as yourself.’
No other commandment is greater than these.
All the Law and the Prophets depend on these two commandments.

Amen. Lord, have mercy.

After a period of reflection

Come, let us return to the Lord and say:

Lord our God,
in our sin we have avoided your call.
Our love for you is like a morning cloud,
like the dew that goes away early.
Have mercy on us;
deliver us from judgment;
bind up our wounds and revive us;
in Jesus Christ our Lord.

cf Hosea 6

May almighty God,
who sent his Son into the world to save sinners,
bring us his pardon and peace, now and forever.

The Word of God

Psalm 62

I must find rest in God only, because my hope comes from him.

Only in God do I find rest;
    my salvation comes from him.
Only God is my rock and my salvation—
    my stronghold!—I won’t be shaken anymore.
How long will all of you attack others;
    how long will you tear them down
    as if they were leaning walls or broken-down fences?
The only desire of this people
    is to bring others down low;
    they delight in deception.
With their mouths they bless,
    but inside they are cursing.
Oh, I must find rest in God only,
    because my hope comes from him!
Only God is my rock and my salvation—
    my stronghold!—I will not be shaken.
My deliverance and glory depend on God.
    God is my strong rock.
    My refuge is in God.
All you people: Trust in him at all times!
    Pour out your hearts before him!
    God is our refuge!
Human beings are nothing but a breath.
    Human beings are nothing but lies.
    They don’t even register on a scale;
    taken all together they are lighter than a breath!
Don’t trust in violence;
    don’t set false hopes in robbery.
When wealth bears fruit,
    don’t set your heart on it.
God has spoken one thing—
    make it two things—
    that I myself have heard:
    that strength belongs to God,
    and faithful love comes from you, my Lord—
    and that you will repay
    everyone according to their deeds.

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.

I must find rest in God only, because my hope comes from him.

Psalm prayer

O God, teach us to seek security,
not in money or theft,
not in human ambition or malice,
not in our own ability or power,
but in you, the only God,
our rock and our salvation.

Psalm 63

My whole being thirsts for God, for the living God.

God! My God! It’s you—
    I search for you!
    My whole being thirsts for you!
    My body desires you
        in a dry and tired land,
        no water anywhere.
Yes, I’ve seen you in the sanctuary;
    I’ve seen your power and glory.
My lips praise you
    because your faithful love
    is better than life itself!
So I will bless you as long as I’m alive;
    I will lift up my hands in your name.
I’m fully satisfied—
    as with a rich dinner.
My mouth speaks praise with joy on my lips—
    whenever I ponder you on my bed,
    whenever I meditate on you
        in the middle of the night—
    because you’ve been a help to me and I shout for joy in the protection of your wings.
My whole being clings to you;
    your strong hand upholds me.
But what about those people who want to destroy me?
    Let them go into the bowels of the earth!
    Let their blood flow by the sword!
    Let them be food for wild jackals!
But the king should rejoice in God;
    everyone who swears by God should give praise
        when the mouths of liars are shut for good.

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.

My whole being thirsts for God, for the living God.

Psalm prayer

To you we come, radiant Lord,
the goal of all our desiring,
beyond all earthly beauty;
gentle protector, strong deliverer,
in the night you are our confidence;
from first light be our joy;
through Jesus Christ our Lord.

Old Testament reading
Isaiah 47

Go down and sit in the dust,
    virgin Daughter Babylon!
Sit on the ground without a throne,
    Daughter Chaldea,
    because they will no longer call you tender and pampered.
Take the millstones and grind flour!
Remove your veil, strip off your robe,
    expose your thighs, wade through the rivers!
Your nakedness will be exposed,
    and your disgrace will be seen.
I will take vengeance;
    no one will intervene.
Our redeemer has spoken;
    the Lord of heavenly forces is his name,
    the holy one of Israel.
Sit silent and go into darkness, Daughter Chaldea,
    because they will no longer call you Queen of Kingdoms.
I was enraged with my people;
    I made my inheritance impure
    and put them under your power.
You took no pity on them.
    You made your yoke heavy even on the elderly.
    You said, “I’m forever; I’m the eternal mistress.”
    You didn’t stop and think;
    you didn’t consider the outcome.
So listen to this,
luxuriant one who sits secure,
    who says in her heart,
    I’m utterly unique;
    I’ll never sit as a widow;
    I’ll never know childlessness:
Both of these will happen to you at once, on a single day:
    childlessness and widowhood
    will envelop you in full measure,
    despite your many sorceries,
    despite your very powerful spells.
You felt secure in your evil;
    you said, “No one sees me.”
Your wisdom and knowledge spun you around.
    You thought to yourself, I and no one else.
Now evil will come against you,
    something you won’t anticipate.
A curse will fall upon you,
    something you won’t be able to dispel.
Destruction will come upon you suddenly,
    something you won’t foresee.
Continue with your enchantments,
    and with your many spells,
    which you have practiced since childhood.
Maybe you will be able to succeed.
    Maybe you will inspire terror.
You are weary from all your consultations;
    let the astrologers stand up and save you,
    those who gaze at the stars,
    and predict what will happen to you at each new moon.
They are just like stubble;
    the fire burns them.
They won’t save themselves from the powerful flames.
    This is no warming ember or fire to sit beside.
Those with whom you have wearied yourself are like this,
    those with whom you were in business from your youth:
    each has wandered off on their own way;
    none will save you.

Silence may be kept.

New Testament reading
1 Thessalonians 2:13-20

We also thank God constantly for this: when you accepted God’s word that you heard from us, you welcomed it for what it truly is. Instead of accepting it as a human message, you accepted it as God’s message, and it continues to work in you who are believers. Brothers and sisters, you became imitators of the churches of God in Judea, which are in Christ Jesus. This was because you also suffered the same things from your own people as they did from the Jews. They killed both the Lord Jesus and the prophets and drove us out. They don’t please God, and they are hostile to the entire human race when they try to stop us from speaking to the Gentiles so they can be saved. Their sins are constantly pushing the limit. God’s wrath has caught up with them in the end.

Brothers and sisters, we were separated from you for a while physically but not in our hearts. We made every effort in our desire to see you again face-to-face. We wanted to come to you—I, Paul, tried over and over again—and Satan stopped us. What is our hope, joy, or crown that we can brag about in front of our Lord Jesus when he comes? Isn’t it all of you? You are our glory and joy!

Silence may be kept.

Gospel canticle
The Benedictus (The Song of Zechariah)

Jerusalem, look to the east and see the joy that is coming to you from God.

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.

Jerusalem, look to the east and see the joy that is coming to you from God.  

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.


In faith we pray
We pray to you, our God.

Silence may be kept.

Collect of the day

O Lord, raise up, we pray, your power
and come among us,
and with great might succor us;
that whereas, through our sins and wickedness
we are grievously hindered
in running the race that is set before us,
your bountiful grace and mercy
may speedily help and deliver us;
through Jesus Christ your Son our Lord,
to whom with you and the Holy Spirit,
be honor and glory, 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.