Loving God, help us remember the birth of Jesus,
that we may share in the song of the angels,
the gladness of the shepherds,
and worship of the wise men.
Close the door of hate
and open the door of love all over the world.
Let kindness come with every gift and good desires with every greeting.
Deliver us from evil by the blessing which Christ brings,
and teach us to be merry with clear hearts.
May the Christmas morning make us happy to be thy children,
and Christmas evening bring us to our beds with grateful thoughts,
forgiving and forgiven, for Jesus’ sake. Amen.
~Robert Louis Stevenson, Scottish novelist and poet
He has no car, no address, no phone number. He has no money in his pocket; he doesn’t know from where his next meal will come; and more than likely he knows not where he’ll lay his head to sleep tonight or any other night for that matter.
I know not his name nor where he’s from nor where he is now. Neither do I have any idea what trials lead this man in the photo to the harsh realities of the streets where he currently exists, but I do know in whose image he is made and to whom he belongs. And I know that if there is to be any kind of joy in his world or peace in our silent nights, it will happen only with help from those of us who are part of Christ’s body.
In the Father’s eyes this man’s worth is no less than that of any other man, and the story that’s in his eyes is deserving of compassionate ears. So I pause tonight to pray for this man and those like him. I pray that all of them find food and shelter as well as a good measure of comfort and peace. And for my family and you who are reading this, I pray that you all have a most blessed Christmas and a very happy New Year. “O, come let us adore Him” for He came to save us all.
Grant me the grace of inner sight this day
that I may see you as the Self within all selves.
Grant me the grace of love this day
that amidst the pain and disfigurement of life
I may find the treasure that is unlocked by love,
that amidst the pain and disfigurement of my own life
I may know the richness that lies buried in the human soul.
~J. Philip Newell
How priceless is your unfailing love! Both high and low among men find refuge in the shadow of your wings. ~Psalm 36:7 ✝
*The photograph of this homeless man was sent out in an enews bulletin from a local church.