God, sometimes I don’t know what to say. I write my prayer the same week that I offer prayers for three mothers who died too young. I write my prayer with the sounds of despair all around me. A Middle East that never seems to see what the Wise Men saw, a star in the east promising a Prince of Peace. A Russian Winter Olympics already pre-terrorized by the terrorism of injustice. Muslim-Christian violence in Africa that makes each religion look blasphemous. In the USA we have a nation that actually bothers to debate the color of Santa and a Duck Dynasty guest list of heaven. Such silliness does violence to your Good News of Great Joy for All People.
God, sometimes I don’t know what to say. It’s as if we don’t want to let You be God, we’ll do it ourselves. We prefer our thoughts to yours; our ways to yours. We sing “O Worship the King” and “What a friend we have in Jesus”, but we’re scared to be your friend or to have you rule over us.
And yet, in your mercy and as you tarry, you have granted us a New Year. Us, all of us, friend and foe and everyone in between, the right and not so right, the good and the bad, we all have a New Year.
Thank you. I accept 2014 as a vote of confidence in us. Maybe we can be ok. Maybe this year will be “new”. Maybe your ways are better than ours, and worth trying. Maybe your thoughts are higher than ours, and worth considering. Maybe your words are more loving than ours and worth saying. Maybe your Christmas gift to us is worth following. We will try. Amen.