Mission Devotional - Christmas Eve

Opening Prayer: Lord Jesus, you are the Word made flesh. On this holy night we celebrate the fact that God did not leave us alone, but sent you to dwell among us and within us. Be the light in our darkness, be our guide in the journey, and be our help along the way. Amen.

Scripture: John 1:1-18

Journal: How are you preparing your heart to receive the Word made flesh? How has Jesus been the light in your darkness? How have you tasted and experienced his grace over the last few weeks or months? How does he want to make his home within you in a new way?

Reflection: On this night, like a burst of brilliant light, there rings out the proclamation of the Apostle: "God's grace has been revealed, and it has made salvation possible for the whole human race" (Titus 2:11).

The grace which was revealed in our world is Jesus, born of the Virgin Mary, true man and true God. He has entered our history; he has shared our journey. He came to free us from darkness and to grant us light. In him was revealed the grace, the mercy, and the tender love of the Father: Jesus is Love incarnate. He is not simply a teacher of wisdom, he is not an ideal for which we strive while knowing that we are hopelessly distant from it. He is the meaning of life and history, who has pitched his tent in our midst.

On this night let us share the joy of the Gospel: God loves us, he so loves us that he gave his Son to be our brother, to be light in our darkness. Our Father loves us, he gives us Jesus to guide us on the way which leads to the promised land. Jesus is the light who brightens the darkness. He is mercy: our Father always forgives us. He is our peace. Amen. - Pope Francis

Prayer for the church, for others, for myself

Joe and Cindy Platillero proclaim the transforming presence of Jesus Christ through Biblical teaching and practical training to all who come through their doors. Their main ministry is through the Torchbearer Center where they have camps, conferences, and a small Bible School during the winter. Pray for them today as they focus on the local church and the church throughout Europe.

Choices Resource Center is a Christian, life-affirming pregnancy resource center offering services to help people facing decisions regarding pregnancy, parenting, purity, and post abortion healing. Pray today for each young woman who will visit this center this week.

Closing Prayer:
O God, who spoke all creation into being:
When you created human flesh,
we betrayed you by our disobedience.
When you led us out of slavery in Egypt,
we doubted and defied you.
Yet you chose to come among us
through your Son, Jesus Christ,
who suffered death on our behalf,
putting an end to the power of sin and death.
For this great gift of your steadfast hope,
we give you thanks.
Help us, O Lord, to keep vigil this night.
Help us to watch for the signs of your coming into our midst,
not in the splendid palaces of power,
but in hearts humbled by need.
Help us to believe that the darkness of cruelty and sin
will never overcome the light, and the mercy, of Christ.
Help us to endure,
knowing that the evil and injustice of this world
cannot prevail against your Word.
We ask this in the name of your Word made flesh,
our Savior, Jesus Christ. Amen.
- Kathleen Norris