The Substance of Faith

The Substance of Faith

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A Christmas Eve Prayer

Everlasting Father, complete now the work of your holy nativity.  Come and be born in us anew.  Break forth in our hearts with the brilliance of the star that split the sky over Bethlehem that first Christmas. Invade our hearts with your love and divide our lives in two, just as the birth of your son separates time into before and after his birth.  

Since he has come to us, we know who we were and what we have done.  For these things we truly repent and offer our new lives under your transforming power.  

Henceforth, may the rivalries of faith, the feuds of politics, the bitterness of old arguments and past grudges cease in our lives.  From this day forward, let us not give room in our hearts to the darkness of this era nor the spirit of this age.  May your Holy Spirit conceive your love in us so that our new birth resists evil and pursues righteousness.  May we find ourselves repulsed by selfishness and clinging to the common good.  Lead us to abandon the callousness of the proud and fearlessly attach ourselves to justice.

As we now follow the way and the truth, may we no longer lie to ourselves or one another.  Convict us when we rationalize our hate or convince ourselves that our hostility toward others reflects your will.  

Guide us to walk in the light, to seek peace, and hold unshakable faith in you and the way of Christ in this world.  

Grant us the gift of obedience so that we might learn the blessings that come from your promises.  By practicing forgiveness may we find the gift of healing.  In giving, may we find the blessings reserved for the generous.  By being kind may we experience the rewards reserved for the compassionate.  

In all these things may we become more like Christ and secure the joy of knowing we are indeed your children.  

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