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(Inspired by Margaret Ellsworth, Advent Word: )

But the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid. I bring you good news that will cause great joy for all the people.” Luke 2:10

My family had the joy of attending Christmas at the Princess in Scottsdale this year. What a sight to behold! This dreamy place displays millions of Christmas lights in sparkling array. Cinderella meets you at the entrance welcoming you to a land of Christmas dreams. Cinderella promises in A Dream is a Wish Your Heart Makes, “No matter how your heart is grieving, if you keep on believing, the dream that you wish will come true.”  We know it’s not as simple as Cinderella promises. Yet in faith, we believe a dream is a prayer your heart makes.

This Christmas season our weary hearts pray for ways to rejoice amid our fears and griefs. Little things can bring daily joy when we see God moments in a small kindness, a hug, a sunrise, or a smile between strangers. We pray for strength, so we are not afraid. We too receive great joy into our hearts with the angel’s good news of “God with us” that first Christmas Eve. We dream of the abundant life Jesus brought full of grace and peace. We trust that one day all will be well.

Until that day, we pray for God’s dream of hope, peace, joy, and love for our weary world. It starts with prayer and takes root in action as we live out our faith. We remind each other of the gift of grace that we carry in our hearts each moment.  Our dreams come true when we hold each other up in hard times and share grace with our neighbors. We will rejoice in kindness! Together we will give thanks for our Savior born in a manger to walk with us always. Keep dreaming. Keep praying.

A 2023 Christmas Prayer from Psalm 126:

When the Lord restored the fortunes of Zion,
    we were like those who dreamed.
Our mouths were filled with laughter,
    our tongues with songs of joy.
Then it was said among the nations,
    “The Lord has done great things for them.”
The Lord has done great things for us,
    and we are filled with joy.

Merry Christmas! Pastor Andrea