Pause

Be still, for the power of the Lord is moving in this place;
[Jesus] comes to cleanse and heal, to minister his grace –
No work too hard for him. In faith receive from him.
Be still, for the power of the Lord is moving in this place.

from “Be Still, for the Presence of the Lord” by David J. Evans (1986)

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Listen

When the angel came to her, he said, “Rejoice, favored one! The Lord is with you!” She was confused by these words and wondered what kind of greeting this might be. The angel said, “Don’t be afraid, Mary. God is honoring you. Look! You will conceive and give birth to a son, and you will name him Jesus. He will be great and he will be called the Son of the Most High. The Lord God will give him the throne of David his father. He will rule over Jacob’s house forever, and there will be no end to his kingdom.”

Luke 1:28-33

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Think

This was the day for which she felt like she had waited an eternity. The anticipation was so great, she had not slept at all the night before. Surrounded by her parents and her siblings she paced throughout the room, all the while rotating between texting and looking at the clock. The moment the clock reached the designated time she quickly logged in as instructed and waited. “Why is our internet so slow?!” she demanded. And then there it was, the letter announcing her acceptance into the college of her dreams! And now everyone was screaming and jumping and hugging and screaming.

Whether it’s anticipated or comes completely by surprise, learning about something that will impact our lives is often transformational.

Mary was clearly initially perplexed, yet she was also open as she pondered the possibilities of what this message meant for her. As we prepare for the coming of the Christ Child, how might we open ourselves to hear something about the next adventure to which God is calling us?

Brian Prior

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Pray

Loving God, prepare me this day to open my ears that I may hear you, open my heart that I may love you, open my hands that I may serve you. Amen.

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Go

My soul magnifies the Lord,

And my spirit rejoices in God my Savior,

For this day, I know I am a beloved child of God.

Brian Prior

The Rt. Rev. Brian N. Prior is the IX Bishop of the Episcopal Church in Minnesota. Before becoming Bishop, Brian served as the founding Rector of the Episcopal Church of the Resurrection in Spokane, WA and as Executive Director of Camp Cross. Brian is married with two sons and is an avid cyclist, runner, swimmer, and basketball coach with a life-long passion for working with young people.

Advent Waiting: Come Thou Long Expected Jesus

David Burroughs

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