Today's gift was a few strips of 'paper chain' and an invitation to recognise those with whom we connect, at home, at church, at work, wherever, and to pray for them.
Today's poem is Advent Calendar by Rowan Williams, which you can find here
The photo was an incredible sunrise, glimpsed only because, waiting to cross the road, I looked east and saw it. Christ comes a bit like that.
And a prayer...
God of sunrise and sunset
Who, in this darkest of seasons
Surprises us with jewel-coloured skies
Red and pinks, gold, orange, mauve and silver...
Fleeting reminders that always, always
You come like the dark...
And you are the light.
Today's gift is practical - a key-ring with a wooden fob. It was packed undecorated, but I chose to decorate mine (though the silver ink doesn't show up very well!)
Christ as the 'Key of David' who unlocks the door/gate that leads us into hope.
As the well loved hymn expresses it...
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
Perhaps the key-ring can be put to good use, and be a sign of hope in the everyday.
Today's poem is The Coming of the Cold by Theodor Roethke, and you can read it here
The photo is a tree that stands in the centre of paved area where people gather to chat, close to a parade of shops, and overlooking a play park. It was the stark, near bareness, of the branches that struck me.
And a prayer...
God who created all things,
Who grants the earth its winter rest.
Even when all seems dark, and stark, and devoid of life...
Grant us, too, the renewing of hope and the re-creation of joy.
A paper star, upon which to write a message, and three gold star stickers.
I chose to stick the stars onto a candle, which I will light to pray for the three people with whom I meet weekly on Zoom to pray with and for each other. These three ministers each shine like stars in their own contexts, and it is good to remember to honour and pray for them in this way.