Advent :: Christmas Eve

1

Christmas Eve

Silent Night

Words: Josef Mohr, ca. 1816-1818. Music: Franz Gruber, ca. 1820
Stanzas 1-3

Silent night, holy night!
All is calm, all is bright.
Round yon Virgin, Mother and Child.
Holy infant so tender and mild,
Sleep in heavenly peace,
Sleep in heavenly peace.

Silent night, holy night!
Shepherds quake at the sight.
Glories stream from heaven afar
Heavenly hosts sing Alleluia,
Christ the Savior is born!
Christ the Savior is born.

Silent night, holy night!
Son of God love’s pure light.
Radiant beams from Thy holy face
With dawn of redeeming grace,
Jesus Lord, at Thy birth.
Jesus Lord, at Thy birth.

Original from Passion City Church

 

Advent :: Day 21

1

Day 21 — Monday, December 24

LAST DAY OF ADVENT

Take a moment now of reflective silence and ponder all that you have experienced on your Advent journey as it draws to its conclusion. Rejoice, for tomorrow the angels will announce the birth of our Lord, all our hopes and fears will come together and be laid at the feet of the babe wrapped in swaddling clothes.

May the Lord bless you in this time of silence before God’s silence is broken forevermore. Fill it with your anticipation and prayers deep within your heart, knowing that the Holy Spirit intercedes for us with intercessions too deep even for our own words.

Scripture

Luke 1:67-79

His father Zechariah was filled with the Holy Spirit and prophesied: “Praise be to the Lord, the God of Israel, because He has come to His people and redeemed them. He has raised up a horn of salvation for us in the house of His servant David (as He said through His holy prophets of long ago), salvation from our enemies and from the hand of all who hate us— to show mercy to our ancestors and to remember His holy covenant, the oath He swore to our father Abraham: to rescue us from the hand of our enemies, and to enable us to serve Him without fear in holiness and righteousness before Him all our days. And you, my child, will be called a prophet of the Most High; for you will go on before the Lord to prepare the way for Him, to give His people the knowledge of salvation through the forgiveness of their sins, because of the tender mercy of our God, by which the rising sun will come to us from heaven to shine on those living in darkness and in the shadow of death, to guide our feet into the path of peace.”

Meditation

What Child is This, William Chatterton Dix, 1865
Stanzas 1-3

What Child is this who, laid to rest
On Mary’s lap is sleeping?
Whom Angels greet with anthems sweet,
While shepherds watch are keeping?
This, this is Christ the King,
Whom shepherds guard and Angels sing;
Haste, haste, to bring Him laud,
The Babe, the Son of Mary.

Why lies He in such mean estate,
Where ox and ass are feeding?
Good Christians, fear, for sinners here
The silent Word is pleading.
Nails, spear shall pierce Him through,
The cross be borne for me, for you.
Hail, hail the Word made flesh,
The Babe, the Son of Mary.

So bring Him incense, gold and myrrh,
Come peasant, king to own Him;
The King of kings salvation brings,
Let loving hearts enthrone Him.
Raise, raise a song on high,
The virgin sings her lullaby.
Joy, joy for Christ is born,
The Babe, the Son of Mary.

Prayer

Father, You have brought us this far in hopeful expectation. We are confident that Your mighty hand and great power are sufficient to lead us all the way home. Awaken our hearts as we open them to You. Live in us, Christ with us, for Your glory. Amen.

Original from Passion City Church

Advent :: Day 20

1

Day 20 — Sunday, December 23

Scripture

Luke 1:57-66

Now the time came for Elizabeth to give birth, and she bore a son. And her neighbors and relatives heard that the Lord had shown great mercy to her, and they rejoiced with her. And on the eighth day they came to circumcise the child. And they would have called him Zechariah after his father, but his mother answered, “No; he shall be called John.” And they said to her, “None of Your relatives is called by this name.” And they made signs to his father, inquiring what he wanted him to be called. And he asked for a writing tablet and wrote, “His name is John.” And they all wondered. And immediately his mouth was opened and his tongue loosed, and he spoke, blessing God. And fear came on all their neighbors. And all these things were talked about through all the hill country of Judea, and all who heard them laid them up in their hearts, saying, “What then will this child be?” For the hand of the Lord was with him.

Meditation

O Come, O Come, Emmanuel
Latin, c. 12th cent,; Psalteriolum Cantionum Catholicarum, Köln, 1710; tr. John Mason Neale, 1818-66, alt.
Stanzas 1 & 7

O come, O come, Emmanuel,
And ransom captive Israel,
That mourns in lonely exile here
Until the Son of God appear.

Rejoice! Rejoice! Emmanuel
Shall come to thee, O Israel!

O come, Desire of nations bind
In one the hearts of all mankind;
Bid thou are sad divisions cease,
And be Thyself our King of Peace.

Rejoice! Rejoice! Emmanuel
Shall come to thee, O Israel!

Prayer

O King of the nations, the Ruler they long for, the cornerstone uniting all people: build our faith on Your firm foundation. Make the kingdoms of humanity reflect Your heavenly kingdom that peace and equality may abound. Govern our hearts with Your love that the works of our hands may glorify You as we live out the vocations You have assigned each of us. Fill us with a longing for Your Kingdom that is to come on that Great Last Day so that the home and anticipation of it become tangible as we offer our prayers on behalf of all peoples. King of the nations come and save us all, whom You formed out of clay. This we pray by the mighty Name of Jesus Christ, our Potter. Amen.

Original from Passion City Church

Advent :: Day 19

1

Day 19 — Saturday, December 22

Scripture

Luke 1:46-56

And Mary said: “My soul glorifies the Lord and my spirit rejoices in God my Savior, for He has been mindful of the humble state of His servant. From now on all generations will call me blessed, for the Mighty One has done great things for me – holy is His name. His mercy extends to those who fear Him, from generation to generation. He has performed mighty deeds with His arm; He has scattered those who are proud in their inmost thoughts. He has brought down rulers from their thrones but has lifted up the humble. He has filled the hungry with good things but has sent the rich away empty. He has helped his servant Israel, remembering to be merciful to Abraham and his descendants forever, even as He said to our fathers.” Mary stayed with Elizabeth for about three months and then returned home.

Meditation

O Come, O Come, Emmanuel
Latin, c. 12th cent,; Psalteriolum Cantionum Catholicarum, Köln, 1710; tr. John Mason Neale, 1818-66, alt.
Stanzas 1 & 6

O come, O come, Emmanuel,
And ransom captive Israel,
That mourns in lonely exile here
Until the Son of God appear.

Rejoice! Rejoice! Emmanuel
Shall come to thee, O Israel!

O come, Thou Dayspring from on high,
And cheer us by Thy drawing nigh;
Disperse the gloomy clouds of night,
And death’s dark shadows put to flight.

Rejoice! Rejoice! Emmanuel
Shall come to thee, O Israel!

Prayer

Lord have mercy,
Christ have mercy,
Lord have mercy.

O Lord hear my prayer.
And let my cry come to You.

O Dayspring, splendor of light everlasting; You are Lord of lords and a light for the nations. Arise, shine for this night grows long. Arise, shine lest Your people stumble and grow weary in the final watches before the break of day. Grant us patience Lord, and strength, to be faithful watchmen through this age until the sunrise of Your Kingdom come. Lord God by Your grace and according to Your mercy for us come and enlighten those who sit in darkness and in the shadow of death. This we pray by the mighty Name of Jesus Christ, everlasting Dawn. Amen.

Original from Passion City Church

Advent :: Day 18

1

Day 18 — Friday, December 21

Scripture

Philippians 2:5-11

In your relationships with one another, have the same mindset as Christ Jesus: Who, being in very nature God, did not consider equality with God something to be used to His own advantage; rather, He made Himself nothing by taking the very nature of a servant, being made in human likeness. And being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself by becoming obedient to death—even death on a cross! Therefore God exalted Him to the highest place and gave Him the name that is above every name, that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and every tongue acknowledge that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.

Meditation

O, Come All Ye Faithful
Written by John Francis Wade, Translated by Frederick Oakeley

O Come All ye faithful,
Joyful and triumphant,
O come ye,
O come ye to Bethlehem.
Come and behold Him,
Born the King of Angels;
O come let us adore Him,
O come let us adore Him,
Christ the Lord.

Sing choirs of angels,
Sing in exultation,
O Sing all ye citizens of Heaven above,
Glory to God oh, Glory in the highest,
O come let us adore Him,
O come let us adore Him,
O come let us adore Him,
Christ the Lord.

Yea Lord we greet Thee,
Born this happy morning,
Jesus to Thee be all glory given,
Word of the Father, now in flesh appearing;
O come let us adore Him,
O come let us adore Him,
O come let us adore Him,
Christ the Lord.

We’ll praise your name forever,
We’ll praise your name forever,
We’ll praise your name forever,
Christ the Lord.

Prayer

Jesus, we’ll praise Your name forever. We’ll praise Your name forever. You are the Lord.

Original from Passion City Church

Advent :: Day 17

1

Day 17 — Thursday, December 20

Scripture

Proverbs 3:33-35

The Lord’s curse is on the house of the wicked, but He blesses the home of the righteous. He mocks proud mockers but gives grace to the humble. The wise inherit honor, but fools He holds up to shame.

James 4:6

But He gives us more grace. That is why Scripture says: “God opposes the proud but gives grace to the humble.”

1 Peter 5:5-7

All of you, clothe yourselves with humility toward one another, because, “God opposes the proud but gives grace to the humble.” Humble yourselves, therefore, under God’s mighty hand, that He may lift you up in due time. Cast all your anxiety on Him because He cares for you.

Meditation and Prayer

A PRIVATE LITANY OF HUMILITY
Adapted from a prayer by Rafael, Cardinal Merry Del Val

From the desire of being praised, deliver me, Jesus. From the desire of being honored, deliver me, Jesus.

From the desire of being preferred, deliver me, Jesus. From the desire of being consulted, deliver me, Jesus. From the desire of being approved, deliver me, Jesus.

From the desire of comfort and ease, deliver me, Jesus. From the fear of being humiliated, deliver me, Jesus. From the fear of being criticized, deliver me, Jesus. From the fear of being passed over, deliver me, Jesus. From the fear of being forgotten, deliver me, Jesus.

From the fear of being lonely, deliver me, Jesus. From the fear of being hurt, deliver me, Jesus. From the fear of suffering, deliver me, Jesus.

That others may be loved more than I, Jesus, grant me the grace to desire it. That others may be chosen and I set aside, Jesus, grant me the grace to desire it. That others may be praised and I unnoticed, Jesus, grant me the grace to desire it.

O Jesus, meek and humble of heart, make my heart like yours. O Jesus, meek and humble of heart, strengthen me with your Spirit. O Jesus, meek and humble of heart, teach me your ways.

O Jesus, meek and humble of heart, help me put my self-importance aside to learn the kind of cooperation with others that makes possible the presence of your Abba’s household. Amen.

Original from Passion City Church

Advent :: Day 16

1

Day 16 — Wednesday, December 19

Scripture

John 14:1-7

“Do not let your hearts be troubled. You believe in God; believe also in Me. My Father’s house has many rooms; if that were not so, would I have told you that I am going there to prepare a place for you? And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come back and take you to be with Me that you also may be where I am. You know the way to the place where I am going.” Thomas said to Him, “Lord, we don’t know where You are going, so how can we know the way?” Jesus answered, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me. If you really know Me, you will know My Father as well. From now on, you do know Him and have seen Him.”

Meditation

O Come, O Come, Emmanuel
Latin, c. 12th cent,; Psalteriolum Cantionum Catholicarum, Köln, 1710; tr. John Mason Neale, 1818-66, alt.
Stanzas 1 & 5

O come, O come, Emmanuel,
And ransom captive Israel,
That mourns in lonely exile here
Until the Son of God appear.

Rejoice! Rejoice! Emmanuel
Shall come to thee, O Israel.

O come, Thou Key of David, come
And open wide our heavenly home;
Make safe the way that leads on high,
And close the path to misery.

Rejoice! Rejoice! Emmanuel
Shall come to thee, O Israel.

Prayer

Father, You are our God and we are Your people. We confess that we are helpless without You, and we know it’s only by the power of Jesus that we could ever know You, and He is our only hope for salvation. The world we are in now is not our home, but we desire the better country, the one You have prepared for us. Please convict us and give us the grace to adjust our lives, our thoughts, and our choices to reflect our longing for the city You have prepared.

*some text adapted from ihabitus.com

Original from Passion City Church