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Joy to the world - Rev James Bissett

Rev James Bissett is an Ordained Local Minister for the Ross Presbytery, currently attached to Contin linked with Fodderty and Strathpeffer.

Here, he has written an Advent prayer on the theme of joy.

Rev Kate McDonald

Heavenly father, You invite us to come united into Your court where the experience will
be like being enveloped in joy. 
You have prepared a place for us where melancholy, misery and sorrow will be no
more and will be replaced with ecstasy, delight and wonder.  
In your very presence there will be eternal pleasure where our hearts will be
glad, our bodies will find nourishment.

At this time of year, as we enter Advent, we are reminded of
and give thanks for the joy of the birth of Christ.  
Born to migrant parents in an occupied land he brought joy to that small family
as he lay there in the manger. 
May your presence, Lord, be with all those who experience the joy of new
life this Christmas season. 
To new parents, brothers and sisters, aunts and uncles and grandparents, may
you all know joy and be supported in the Lord’s loving arms.

Yet even in a time of joy, there are so many people hurting
in the world. 
People in our communities who wear a mask of joy in public, but in private
endure their own demons. 
Dear Lord, I pray that they will come to know that even on the darkest of
nights you are there for them, holding them close. 
Precious Jesus, may this Christmas be a time where they may know of your
healing presence as you help to heal their hurts and mend their wounds. 
And may all who would say that Jesus is their friend, seek out and be there for
those who are in the depths of their own despair.

As we approach the night where we commemorate your birth
Lord Jesus, help us to be agents of joy who bring your light to the darkest
corners of the world. 
As you brought the glory of heaven down to the most humble of surroundings, may
we too seek to share the news of your healing in the darkest and lowliest of
places. 
And may this coming year truly be the year where all can find peace, find love
and find joy.

In the name of Jesus Christ our Lord,
Amen

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