Comfort, comfort your people O God. In the face of unspeakable loss, tragedy, and horror, we seek peace, and yet doubt its coming. Cloaked in the darkness of the unknown and fear, we yearn to know how to move toward your light. When our sighs are too deep for words, and when we weep for others’ loss, be in our breath and be in our tears. When we respond with open arms and questions that echo without answer, be in our reach and in our unknowing.
Comfort, comfort your people O God. For those of us saturated in grief while the world around us dances and bells jingle, ease the pain and sorrow. For those whose daily burden seems too heavy to bear, speak clearly your peace, give clearly your strength.
Comfort, comfort your people O God. We are better givers than receivers. Especially in these days of ribbons, and bows, and pretty papers, and fancy wrappings, may we find ourselves with arms open to receive – not gifts of stuff, but your eternal and perfect gift. Break down our walls of pride and arrogance that we are able to recognize not just the obvious gifts given, but your simple, surprising, absurd gifts.
Comfort, comfort your people O God. May we find joy and regain our laughter when we are tempted to take ourselves too seriously. We want power – we want to stand on our own, we want to be in charge, we want the power to fix things.
We hear the voice crying in the wilderness – calling us to repentance – calling us toward a reversal – toward your own Reversal of our expectations. May our repentance ready us to receive your gifts, and allow you to shape us into your own self. Even in our reluctance and our unwillingness, may we be made into your image and your people.
Comfort, comfort your people O God. May we not just speak of your peace, but may we know your peace. May it be your very presence among us.
Bring us together in community, to receive the gift of your Son. Amen.