Prayer: Loving God, keep me mindful of your plan for humanity and your promise fulfilled in your Incarnation, dwelling among us and all the people of the nations. Help us to work your way of peace in a world that doesn’t always listen very well. In your amazing Name we pray, Amen.
Reading: Isaiah 9: 2-7 (Click to read text)
Stop and GROW: After reading the text, discuss/ponder the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America's Book of Faith questions, which are part of Camp Mount Luther's GROW Time with campers.
QUESTION 1: What scares, confuses, challenges, or doesn’t make sense to me in this text?
QUESTION 2: What delights me in this text or is my favorite part of the story?
QUESTION 3: What stories or memories does this text stir in me?
QUESTION 4: What is God up to in this text?
Reflection: Stark contrasts come over and over from the great prophet—images of terrible war and commanded peace, shining light and deep darkness, clubs remembered and envisioned shattered…
We don’t want to think about the negative images, shuddering in worship when we hear the garment dragged through blood. Yet, can we appreciate the light without knowing darkness is overcome? Is not this the heart of the Christmas perspective that the stores forget? There is no gift like the one of liberation from sin, darkness, and death. There is no god that delivers like the God of our ancestors, God of our lives, and God of our best hopes and dreams. We look forward to the day when we all follow the teachings of God-Man, and our warring ways cease.
So let us sing and dance, worship and praise, cheer and toast to our King of Kings. Ruling beyond our expectations, he has delivered on the promise beyond our expectations and far beyond our merit. --Andrew Fitch
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