In that day the LORD Almighty will be a glorious crown, a beautiful wreath for the remnant of his people.
How many of you have a Christmas wreath hanging at your house? Wreaths carry many messages. Hung on a door or window, the wreath has been viewed as an invitation to the spirit of Christmas to enter the home.
From a Christian perspective, the evergreen wreath has always been a symbol of eternal life. The wreath’s circular shape with no beginning and no end, reminds us of the eternal presence of God.
When I saw the photograph of the wreath hanging on the sanctuary door above the grand piano, it reminded me of an anthem I have accompanied many times, “Eternal Life.” The lyrics written centuries ago and attributed to St. Francis of Assisi are a prayer of peace.
As we prepare to celebrate the coming of the Christ child, this prayer offers us a chance to pause and reflect on who we are, and what it is that we are called to do.
Lord, make me an instrument of your peace; where there is hatred, let me sow love; where there is injury, pardon; where there is doubt, faith; where there is despair, hope; where there is darkness, light; where there is sadness, joy.
O divine Master, grant that I may not so much seek to be consoled as to console, to be understood as to understand, to be loved as to love. For it is in giving that we receive, it is in pardoning that we are pardoned. And it is in dying that we are born to eternal life. Amen.