God – During Advent Darkness while I wait for Your light and love to be born in Bethlehem, I reflect upon my ashes, the embers of the things within me which are not worthy of Your Kingdom. Some of those things have been torched to some extent in prayer by Your Holy Spirit. Like, my pride. My vanity. My self-importance. Not being accepting of others who are different than me or not treating my neighbors in the way I want to be treated by them. Much more work by me needs to be done.
However, the fire of the Your Holy Spirit has caused the better parts of me to shine, to reflect more of You and Your love on others. Like compassion. Forgiveness. Trust and faith in You. Valuing others more than my possessions. Thankfulness for Your blessings.
In an inspirational sermon delivered by Stuart Bates, Rector of St. Francis Episcopal Church Houston, on the second week of Advent, Stuart said that God wants all His children to be worthy of His Kingdom. That each of us needs to be mindful of the qualities which make us worthy to be admitted to Heaven and those qualities that have no place in Heaven like greed, hate, pride and lust.
God, I pray that each of us consider the metaphor told by Stuart of the prairie fire which consumes that which is no longer useful to the Earth. But, afterword, the ground is purified. It has received food for new life. Then comes the green from the Earth. The shiny and shimmering leaves. The newness like that of an innocent child You bring to our world.
God, in prayer please light within us prairie fires of the Holy Spirit, to purify ourselves, to make us more worthy to enter the Gates of Heaven and to remove from each of us the chafe of our human imperfections so that we can see, know and reflect You and Your perfect Spirit on Earth. Amen
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Jack H. Emmott is a Senior Counsel of Gray, Reed & McGraw, LLP, a 145-lawyer full-service firm in Houston, Dallas, and Waco, Texas, a Board-Certified Family Law and Master Credentialed Collaborative Law Professional Divorce Attorney, Mediator, Author, Entrepreneur and Inspirational Speaker. For more information about Jack or his latest book, Bending Angels: Living Messengers of God’s Love, go to the Bending Angel website.