As we enter this Advent season, we may be faced with a new way of doing things, new circumstances, or even new grief. Sometimes the words and structure of others can help bring new life to our prayers and spiritual practices. Sometimes liturgy, the set form of a religious experience, can offer a scaffolding we didn't even know we needed.
We invited Kayla Craig into our conversation about the power of borrowed prayers. When someone else's words speak to our spirits, we can experience the Body of Christ in a powerful way. This time of year, Advent, lends itself especially well to introducing "borrowed prayers" into our rhythms. We remember the saints before us and those who celebrate and remember Christ's first arrival still today.
As you consider what it means to introduce liturgy into your season, we pray that it gives you a rich connection to the Church and to your own practices of remembering the birth of Christ as we wait for his return.
Kayla's new book for families, Every Season Sacred: Reflections, Prayers, and to Nourish Your Soul and Nurture Your Family Throughout the Year
From Strength to Strength by Arthur Brooks
Submitted by Rev. Nathan Williams , Covenant Presbyterian Church, West Des Moines, IA
We praise your greatness, O Lord,
and our spirits rejoice in you, our Savior.
You looked with favor on your unlikely servant Mary,
and she delivered a blessing for all generations.
You, the Almighty, have done great things, and your name is ever holy.
From the depth of your compassion,
you gave life to Jesus, your Son,
who came to show mercy on those who need you most,
from generation to generation.
His perfect love showed your strength,
and his humility made the proud stumble.
His death cast down from their thrones the powers of death,
and his resurrection lifted humanity up from the lowliness of the grave.
Come upon us now with your Holy Spirit,
and let your power overshadow this meal, O Most High.
As we share this bread and cup,
fill us with the life of Jesus Christ.
May we bear him into the world once again,
so that we may empty ourselves of unjust wealth
and fill the hungry with good things.
Make us your servant people,
signs of your promise of mercy,
in the name of the coming Christ.
We pray in his name, saying…
(The Lord’s Prayer)
Our Father in heaven,
hallowed be your name,
your kingdom come,
your will be done,
on earth as in heaven.
Give us today our daily bread.
Forgive us our sins as we forgive those who sin against us.
Save us from the time of trial, and deliver us from evil.
For the kingdom, the power, and the glory are yours,
now and forever. Amen.
Every Moment Holy A Liturgy for the Christmas Season
Are borrowed prayers helpful for me? Do they feel comforting? Do they give words to my feelings and experiences?
How might I experience a liturgical church service in a way that brings me closer to the saints around the world?
How does my own faith story impact my worship style?
Today we are diving into holiday planning dynamics.
Talking about specific scenarios and comments from listeners, we discuss issues such as what happens when roles shift, or need to shift, how to have productive conversations that honor people, and what it looks like to put your own spin on old favorites.
Whether you are happy holiday roles are shifting, or you are mourning a loss or change, this episode is for you!
“It would be a gift and blessing to me if….”
“Would you be willing to meet with me about Christmas? I have some ideas I’d love your input on.”
“I would really love to ___________________. I realize this is breaking from tradition and I want to honor how you feel about that. Can you tell me your thoughts?”
“Make a careful exploration of who you are and the work you have been given, and then sink yourself into that. Don’t be impressed with yourself. Don’t compare yourself with others. Each of you must take responsibility for doing the creative best you can with your own life.” Galatians 6:4 (The Message)
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It's that time of year - when we look at calendars and either get excited or feel overwhelmed. Anna Watson Carl, people gatherer extraordinaire, walks us through the why of holiday gathering and how to take the pressure off of ourselves.
As a woman who loves a good dinner party, Anna tells us some of her past holiday mistakes and how she learned from them. As a trained chef, she gives us actual food ideas for both a sit down event or a mingle and snack kind of party. (See below for recipes.) If rosemary, garlic, fig sauce, and lemon curd sound like your kinds of holiday foods, you are going to love Anna's recipes from her blog and cookbook, The Yellow Table.
Holiday gathering is meant to be fun. Whether you're a host or a guest at an event, you will walk away from this conversation with both practical ideas and inspiration. It is the science and the art of holiday gathering.
On iTunes or watch it here:
The Art of Gathering by Priya Parker
Dishes to Bring to a Party:
Festive Holiday Menu:
Prosciutto-Wrapped Pork Loin with Rosemary Fig Butter
Homemade Hostess Gifts:
Dorina Gilmore-Young’s French toast casserole
What are your priorities this season?
How do you want your guests to feel after a gathering?
How do YOU want to feel this season?
Christmas decorations have already been in the stores for months, but now it's time to get serious about holiday shopping. Why? Because we want to make the most of our time and money, and we want to be thoughtful gift givers.
Alex and Krista lay out seven people you may have on your shopping list and some ideas on what to get for them. From husbands to teenagers, parents to coworkers, we've got you covered. Some principles on what to consider when selecting a gift and some detailed suggestions on what might be the perfect idea.
This is heavy on the practical as we offer a few episodes in the coming weeks on preparing for the Christmas season. Your December self will thank your November self as you check things off of your to-do list like shopping and wrapping.
Kate Bowler and Jessica Richie’s book of prayers
Crate + Barrel white bakeware
Who is on your list? What is your budget? When is your deadline for shopping done? When is your deadline for wrapping?