Gifts to you this Christmas.
First, music from Caleb and Whitney Wiley, mid-term missionaries in Madagascar. An original member of ChurchFolk, Caleb now helps believers to create indigenous worship music. Also, music from Pastor Erik Dewar's "Hope in God Psalm Project" Psalm 86.
Second, a Christmas Eve prayer by Wendell C. Hawley from a Pastor Prays for His People
Wonderful Counselor, Might God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace
These divinely given titles only partially describe you, baby of Bethlehem.
They cause us to stop—and worship you in wonder and adoration.
No typical baby, you:
You are a matchless gift from the eternal Kingdom.
Wonderful Counselor, we turn to you amidst the complexities of life, for your counsel is sure.
You know all things—the beginning from the end;
with you is no darkness at all, no confusion, no contingencies.
We commit our needs, our way, our life to you—
direct us, Wonderful Counselor.
We turn to you, Mighty God, for we are limited.
In fact, everything we need comes from you.
Your hand is not shortened, not withered,
your thoughts are not clouded,
your purposes are never frustrated.
Nothing less than a Mighty God could reach us,
provide for us,
raise us up in the last day,
where we will be with the Lord forever.
We turn to you, Everlasting Father, Holy Father,
whose care for his children will never be eclipsed.
For some, the picture of a father's care is gravely distorted,
but there is no disappointment with Jesus.
He alone can promise: Cast all your care upon me, for I care for you.
Not just a few cares, not just for today,
but all our cares—forever . . . Everlasting Father.
We turn to you, Prince of Peace, as the only one who can bring peace
to our hearts, our homes,
our cities, our country,
Unregenerate mankind plots against God and his Anointed One,
but their hideous rebellion shall utterly fail.
Someday—perhaps today—the Prince of Peace will come and make wars to cease;
no more hatred, no more fighting, no more spilling of blood.
Then, not only wise men and shepherds will bow and worship,
but the whole world—every knee—will bow
and acknowledge him as the King of kings, Prince of Peace.
Even so, come Lord Jesus!