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from Worship & Song: Worship Resources Edition (c) 2011 by Abingdon Press. Used by permission.
Call to Worship
We gather in preparation
for good news is about to be proclaimed.
We gather in expectation
for joy is about to break forth in our midst.
We gather in celebration
for we are those people who have said
yes to the manger,
yes to the one incarnate for others,
yes to the wholeness of God.
In preparation and expectation, let us celebrate!
By William B. Oden
© 1976 William B. Oden
Prayer of Confession
always with us, always coming:
We confess that we do not know
how to prepare for your Advent.
We have forgotten how to hope in miracles;
We have ignored the promise of your kingdom.
We get distracted by all the busyness of this season.
Forgive us, God.
Grant us the simple wonder of the shepherds,
the intelligent courage of the Magi,
and the patient faith of Mary and Joseph,
that we may journey with them to Bethlehem
and find the good news of a child born for us.
Now, in the quiet of our hearts,
we ask you to make us ready for his coming. Amen.
by Janet Cawley
© 2000 The United Church Publishing House
Lord, we need you to give us power and strength for these days. Stores are sending us messages claiming that things can bring happiness. We consistently feel the pull of consumerism drawing us to place value in our possessions and things. O God, we need to be reminded that Advent is the anticipation of the giving and receiving of a gift far greater than any purchase made at the shopping mall. So we place these offerings before you as a demonstration of our commitment to you. Help us as we seek to follow your ways and to sing your praise. We pray in the name of Jesus Christ. Amen.
Dear Father, we admit that Advent can be a challenging time. We are not accustomed to waiting. We live in a world of instant gratification. Yet you call us to wait, to anticipate, and to prepare for the birth of your son on Christmas Day. Now we are counting the days until Christmas Day. This countdown generates a variety of emotional responses: excitement, joy, relief, and maybe even panic. Provide us with a sense of calm. May the rhythm of worship and this offering moment calm us so that we are prepared to receive anew the birth of Jesus, the Christ Child. Amen
by David Bell
© 2007 The General Board of Discipleship of The United Methodist Church