12/8/08

Monday Morning Offering - 24


Image: George Mendoza

God of power and mercy,

open our hearts in welcome.
Remove the things that hinder us
from receiving Christ with joy,
so that we may share his wisdom
and become one with him
when he comes in glory.


-Opening Prayer for Mass on the Second Sunday of Advent


Good morning, good God!

At Mass yesterday we asked you to
Remove the things that hinder us
from receiving Christ with joy…

Would you do that, Lord?
Will you do that for us?
Could we work together on this?

This Monday morning
let me offer you the things that might hinder me
from receiving Christ with joy this Christmas…

My selfishness hinders me, God,
from receiving Christ with joy in this season of giving,
so I offer it to you…
I offer you my impulse to keep things for myself
when I have more than I need…
I offer you the urge to buy and have more
while others don’t have enough…
I offer you the resources I hoard
while others have nothing for a rainy day…
Free me to see the needs of others as more important than my own
and help me welcome Christ with joy…

My grudges and resentments hinder me, God,
from receiving the Christ Child with joy this Christmas,
so I offer them to you…
I offer you the heavy backpack
of stale arguments, old disagreements and tired arrogance
that weighs me down and keep me from running
to the Bethlehem stable…
Help me let go the ill will I cling to
and lift from my shoulders the weight of pride
that I might welcome Christ with joy…

Some of my desires and fantasies, my daydreams,
hinder me, God, from receiving your Son with joy,
with a pure heart, this Christmas…
So I offer you my desires:
tame them, heal them, shape them, mold them
and use them for your glory
that I might welcome Christ with joy…

My life’s circumstances hinder me, God,
from receiving Christ with joy this Christmas:
I worry about keeping my job, finding a job, needing a second job…
My limbs are weak, my fingers not strong,
heart beats too fast and I move too slowly…
My credit cards are maxed out, the bills are due, the car needs work…
My family’s not strong, my will power’s weak,
my commitments are wavering…
So I offer you the broken pieces of my day-to-day…
I offer you my latest efforts to make things better
and the failed efforts of the past...
I offer you the pain I carry…
I offer you the empty feeling that I have nothing left to offer…
Be with me in my difficulties and help me know you’re there…
Help me know what I cannot do
and give me courage to do what I can…
Help me to lean on others for support
and to understand that their strength is a gift to me from your hand…
Give me peace of mind and heart
that I might welcome Christ with joy this Christmas…

I offer you, O God,
all the hope and faith and trust I have –
and some days, that’s not too much –
but what I have I offer you
and ask you to take what I have
and by your power and grace,
make of it what I need
that I might receive and welcome Christ with joy
this Christmas...


Amen.

-ConcordPastor

3 comments:

joey said...

I printed this out and I'm going to carry this in my pocket with me...

Thank you...

ConcordPastor said...

You're welcome, Joey! Makes a blogger's heart happy to know that someone might take words from here as "prayer in a pocket"!

regina said...

Beautifully said, and says a lot of the things I feel and am going through.
Financial worries that never seem to go away. Worry about my families health, afraid that my own feelings of depression and anxiety, that have been a part of my life for so long will continue to keep me in the dark place I always seem to find, and the fear that it will never change. I need hope. And I need the power and grace God want's for us all. Trusting I will find it is not a simple task. I feel like I have been without it for so long, It will never be a part of my life. I try. I pray every day for God's will and grace to come into my life and the lives of others who need it as much if not more than I do.
I hope to "welcome Christ with joy this season". As illusive as that may seem, I still hold out hope.
May the brokenness some of us feel day to day somehow find a healing place during this special season of Christ.