Wednesday: Dec. 3         Read Psalm 80:1-7, 17-19

Give ear, O Shepherd of Israel, you who lead Joseph like a flock!

You who are enthroned upon the cherubim, shine forth

before Ephraim and Benjamin and Manasseh.

Stir up your might, and come to save us!

Restore us, O God; let your face shine, that we may be saved.

O LORD God of hosts,

how long will you be angry with your people’s prayers?

You have fed them with the bread of tears,

and given them tears to drink in full measure.

You make us the scorn of our neighbors;

our enemies laugh among themselves.

Restore us, O God of hosts;

let your face shine, that we may be saved.

But let your hand be upon the one at your right hand,

the one whom you made strong for yourself.

Then we will never turn back from you;

give us life, and we will call on your name.

Restore us, O LORD God of hosts;

let your face shine, that we may be saved.


from Rev. X. Rae Browning

First Christian Church, Cumberland, MD

It seems lately that I have been remembering more and more of my dreams. And last night the dream was of family gathering together. Some had been enslaved, and some who stayed on private grounds had not. To keep this dream story short, families enslaved and those who were free banded together, though they were surrounded and outnumbered by the captors of the enslaved ones. Because this smaller group of people believed in God and called on God openly, God’s presence prevailed.

Believe in Jesus Christ our Savior: God is alive today. As in the Psalm, we can be objects of derision and mocked by others, but we will not lose if we openly call on God. Don’t fret over little things these Holy Days. When someone wishes you “Happy Holidays,” be happy. Christ will always be with you, whether “Christmas” is the spoken word, or not. Nothing can separate us from God, for Jesus Christ is our Shepherd.

Restore us, Lord God Almighty;

make your face shine on us, that we may be saved. Amen.