Wednesday morning December 19

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.



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 75


It is God who is the judge.

We give thanks to you, God. Yes, we give thanks!

Your name is near. Your marvelous deeds are declared.

God says, “When I decide the time is right,

I will establish justice just so.

The earth and all its inhabitants will melt,

but I will keep its pillars steady.”

I said to the arrogant,

“Don’t be arrogant!”

To the wicked I said,

“Don’t exalt your strength!

Don’t exalt your strength so highly.

Don’t speak so arrogantly against the rock.”

Because what exalts someone

doesn’t come from the east or west;

it’s not from the south either.

Rather it is God who is the judge.

He brings this person down,

but that person he lifts up.

Indeed, there’s a cup in the Lord’s hand

full of foaming wine, mixed with spice.

He will pour it out,

and all of the earth’s wicked people

must drink it;

they must drink every last drop!

But I will rejoice always;

I will sing praises to Jacob’s God!

God says:

“I will demolish every bit of the wicked’s power,

but the strength of the righteous will be lifted up.”

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.


It is God who is the judge.

Psalm prayer

Judge of all the earth,

restrain the ambition of the proud

and establish among us the reign of the Messiah,

who drained for us the cup of judgment

and is alive with you and the Holy Spirit,

one God, forever and ever.

Psalm 96


Bow down to the Lord in his holy splendor!

Sing to the Lord a new song!

Sing to the Lord, all the earth!

Sing to the Lord! Bless his name!

Share the news of his saving work every single day!

Declare God’s glory among the nations;

declare his wondrous works among all people

because the Lord is great and so worthy of praise.

He is awesome beyond all other gods

because all the gods of the nations are just idols,

but it is the Lord who created heaven!

Greatness and grandeur are in front of him;

strength and beauty are in his sanctuary.

Give to the Lord, all families of the nations—

give to the Lord glory and power!

Give to the Lord the glory due his name!

Bring gifts!

Enter his courtyards!

Bow down to the Lord in his holy splendor!

Tremble before him, all the earth!

Tell the nations, “The Lord rules!

Yes, he set the world firmly in place;

it won’t be shaken.

He will judge all people fairly.”

Let heaven celebrate! Let the earth rejoice!

Let the sea and everything in it roar!

Let the countryside and everything in it celebrate!

Then all the trees of the forest too

will shout out joyfully

before the Lord because he is coming!

He is coming to establish justice on the earth!

He will establish justice in the world rightly.

He will establish justice among all people fairly.

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.


Bow down to the Lord in his holy splendor!

Psalm prayer

Lord God, you draw us by your beauty

and transform us by your holiness;

let our worship echo all creation’s praise

and declare your glory to the nations;

through Jesus Christ our Lord.

Old Testament reading
Isaiah 51:1-8

Listen to me, you who look for righteousness, you who seek the Lord:

Look to the rock from which you were cut

and to the quarry where you were dug.

Look to Abraham your ancestor,

and to Sarah, who gave you birth.

They were alone when I called them, but I blessed them

and made them many.

The Lord will comfort Zion;

he will comfort all her ruins.

He will make her desert like Eden

and her wilderness like the Lord’s garden.

Happiness and joy will be found in her—

thanks and the sound of singing.

Pay attention to me, my people;

listen to me, my nation,

for teaching will go out from me,

my justice, as a light to the nations.

I will quickly bring my victory.

My salvation is on its way,

and my arm will judge the peoples.

The coastlands hope for me;

they wait for my judgment.

Look up to the heavens,

and gaze at the earth beneath.

The heavens will disappear like smoke,

the earth will wear out like clothing,

and its inhabitants will die like gnats.

But my salvation will endure forever,

and my righteousness will be unbroken.

Listen to me, you who know what is right,

people who carry my teaching in your heart:

Don’t fear human scorn,

and don’t be upset when they abuse you.

The moth will eat them as if they were clothing,

and the worm will eat them like wool,

but my righteousness is forever,

and my salvation for all generations.

Silence may be kept.

New Testament reading
2 Thessalonians 1

From Paul, Silvanus, and Timothy:

To the church of the Thessalonians, which is in God our Father, and in the Lord Jesus Christ.

Grace and peace to all of you from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.

Brothers and sisters, we must always thank God for you. This is only right because your faithfulness is growing by leaps and bounds, and the love that all of you have for each other is increasing. That’s why we ourselves are bragging about you in God’s churches. We tell about your endurance and faithfulness in all the harassments and trouble that you have put up with. This shows that God’s judgment is right, and that you will be considered worthy of God’s kingdom for which you are suffering. After all, it’s right for God to pay back the ones making trouble for you with trouble and to pay back you who are having trouble with relief along with us. This payback will come when the Lord Jesus is revealed from heaven with his powerful angels. He will give justice with blazing fire to those who don’t recognize God and don’t obey the good news of our Lord Jesus. They will pay the penalty of eternal destruction away from the Lord’s presence and away from his mighty glory. This will happen when he comes on that day to receive honor from his holy people and to be admired by everyone who has believed—and our testimony to you was believed.

We are constantly praying for you for this: that our God will make you worthy of his calling and accomplish every good desire and faithful work by his power. Then the name of our Lord Jesus will be honored by you, and you will be honored by him, consistent with the grace of our God and the Lord Jesus Christ.

Silence may be kept.

Gospel canticle
The Benedictus (The Song of Zechariah)


You have shown the mercy promised to our ancestors, and remembered your holy covenant.

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.


You have shown the mercy promised to our ancestors, and remembered your holy covenant.

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

Prayers may include the following concerns:

The church, that she may be ready for the coming of Christ

The leaders of the church

The nations, that they may be subject to the rule of God

Those who are working for justice in the world

The broken, that they may find God’s healing

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

O Lord Jesus Christ,

who at your first coming sent your messenger

to prepare your way before you:

grant that the ministers and stewards of your mysteries

may likewise so prepare and make ready your way

by turning the hearts of the disobedient to the wisdom of the just,

that at your second coming to judge the world

we may be found an acceptable people in your sight;

for you are alive and reign with the Father

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.