In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. The Word was in the beginning with God. All things came into being through the Word, and without the Word not one thing came into being. What has come into being in the Word was life, and the life was the light of all people. The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not overcome it. (John 1:1-5)
An aspect of the Christmas story we easily miss is how difficult this time must have been for Mary and Joseph, living under Roman occupation, poor, homeless, wandering, and unsure of the future. And yet, the Christmas story is filled with the presence of God through the hardest times and the most joyful times. So too, for us this year. Though filled with challenges and turmoil, God continues to be present and presenting us with miracles of new life.
As you celebrate the Twelve Days of this Christmas season and in the closing of this challenging year, these Devotions come with prayers for you and your ministries, with hope for our world so desperately in need of new life, and with suggestions for your own prayers and thoughts for each of the 12 Days of Christmas. May God’s Word light our way through this journey of sustaining faith, of buoyant hope, of love reborn and of joy sparkling and dancing into the bleakest times – of the new life of Christ always being born anew – because nothing can overcome God’s love at work in our world.
First day of Christmas, December 25
As you light the one Christ Candle, notice how one small flame can give so much illumination. The darker it is, the brighter the one flame shines in the darkness. Notice all the places of darkness around you, around others and around our world. Notice where the flickering flames of God’s love are present. Pray and work for the illumination of the light of God’s love to shine in each space of darkness.