A Closing Prayer
Christmas Eve, December 24, 2007
On this night of nights,
We have more for which to be grateful than we will ever know:
More cause to bless and cherish
And bend our knee in wonder,
More call to lift our hearts on wings of praise.
For we, too, on this very night,
Illuminated by a story and a star,
Can witness a miracle:
A birth heralding our birth,
Pregnant with promise and oh so surpassingly strange;
A life no less magical than ours;
A death to charge our days with purpose,
Helping us to live in such a way
That our lives, too, will prove worth dying for.
To enter the realm of enchantment,
We must first shed our self-protective cover,
Not, as we too often and so sadly do,
Take this precious life for granted,
But unwrap the present and receive the gift,
Mysterious and charged with saving grace.
So let us, on this night of nights, set aside our shopping list of grievances,
Resist the nattering of our grubby little egos,
And crack our parched lives open like a seed.
Let us pray.
Let us awaken from the soul-crushing allures
Of sophisticated resignation and cynical chic,
To savor instead the world of abundance and possibility
That awaits just beyond the self-imposed limits of our imagination.
Let us awaken to the saving gift of forgiveness,
Where we can, in a single breath, free ourselves and free another.
Let us awaken to the possibility of love,
Body, mind, and spirit,
All-saving and all-redeeming love.
Let us awaken to the blessing of acceptance,
Expressed in a simple, saving mantra:
Want what we have; do what we can; be who we are.
Rather than let wishful thinking or regret
Displace the gratitude for all that is ours, here and now,
To savor and to save.
Let us want what we have
Praying for health, if we are blessed with health,
For friendship, if we are blessed with friends,
For family, if we are blessed with family,
For work, if we are blessed with tasks that await our doing,
And if our lives are dark, may we remember to want nothing more than the loving
Affection of those whose hearts are broken by
Let us do what we can
Not dream impossible dreams or climb every mountain,
But dream one possible dream and climb one splendid mountain,
That our life may be blessed with attainable meaning.
And let us be who we are
Embrace our God-given nature and talents.
Answer the call that is ours, not another's,
Thereby enhancing our little world and the greater world we share.
That is my Christmas prayer,
Call it thoughtful wishing.
All we have to do is put our heart in it.
And there's one more bonus.
Unlike wishful thinking, thoughtful wishes always come true.
Amen. I love you. And may God bless us all.