Pause

I dream a world where all
Will know sweet freedom's way,
Where greed no longer saps the soul
Nor avarice blights our day.
A world I dream where black or white,
Whatever race you be,
Will share the bounties of the earth
And every person is free,
Where wretchedness will hang its head
And joy, like a pearl,
Attends the needs of all mankind—
Of such I dream, my world!

from "I Dream A World," by Langston Hughes

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Listen

“Bless the Lord God of Israel because he has come to help and has delivered his people. He has raised up a mighty savior for us in his servant David’s house, just as he said through the mouths of his holy prophets long ago. He has brought salvation from our enemies and from the power of all those who hate us. He has shown the mercy promised to our ancestors, and remembered his holy covenant, the solemn pledge he made to our ancestor Abraham. He has granted that we would be rescued from the power of our enemies so that we could serve him without fear, in holiness and righteousness in God’s eyes, for as long as we live."

Luke 1:68-75

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Think

For two years I served at Saint Hilda’s House in New Haven, Connecticut, a branch of the Episcopal Service Corps. I lived with eight other housemates in the rectory of our sponsoring parish, Christ Church.We were all placed in service sites around the city, tending to the needs of those that the city itself had forgotten.

We were also tasked with various liturgical duties around the parish. One of these was attending and leading morning prayer during the week. Most days, especially during the cold winter months, it was a struggle to get out of bed and make it to prayer. But looking back, it was such a powerful experience to begin our day with prayers that had been said by Christians for centuries.

The Benedictus as we hear it today from Luke was how each morning prayer would begin. It would always remind me that waiting for Christ is not a passive act. Waiting for Christ means preparing the way for him, serving those that Jesus himself ministered to during his lifetime.

Will Oxford

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Pray

Lord, it is hard to know how to serve you best. I know the very least I can do is to love those who aren’t being loved, and some days even that is a struggle. Give me strength to love and heal this broken world. Amen.

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Go

The arc of the moral universe is long but it bends toward justice.

Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

Will Oxford

Will Oxford currently lives in New York City with his wife, Heidi. He is a proud native of the Blue Ridge Mountains in North Carolina. He graduated from Appalachian State University in 2013 with degrees in History and Appalachian Studies. He served for 2 years in the Episcopal Service Corps in New Haven, CT.

Reflections on the Way: I Will Arise and Go to Jesus - Break Thou the Bread of Life

Ken Medema

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