We thank you, O God, for the example of Roberto Clemente’s love, for a life living out the meaning of scripture, which says, “Greater love hath no man than this, than to lay down his life for his friends.”
Remind us, in this selfish world in which live, that love is not a commodity to be reaped, but a harvest to be shared.
Grant us the gift of a giving love, a blessing love. Make us truly more interested in loving than being loved.
As Christmas approaches, we pray for those continents away from those they love:
State Department personnel
We pray for refugees crowded into camps
And for inmates crowded into prisons
At a time of year focused on home, we pray for those who are homeless, who are not all bearded schizophrenics pushing shopping carts, but who are also
Addicts ruled by drugs
Or the mentally ill haunted by anxieties
Or criminals hiding from the law
Or families devastated by healthcare bills
Or vagrants refusing to work
Or gay teenagers shunned by families.
We thank you for expressions of love from those who know us this time of year: for cards, gifts, and visits.
We thank you for chances to express love to those who don’t know us, through toy drives and Christmas baskets.
But remind us that loving our families is a year-round opportunity
And remind us that poverty is a year-round reality.
We thank you, Lord, for the music we have experienced this season:
Our choir in worship last Sunday,
The orchestra on Tuesday
And our children’s choirs on Wednesday.
We thank you for the generous gifts of time and money that make these blessings possible.
We offer you now this time of worship
May we bring to it our full attention
May we offer you our full devotion
So that, after we leave this place, we might put our worship in motion, by loving and serving others.