Advent and Christmas Prayer Calendar

December is here: A new month for prayer adventures and God-seeking, more than just the shopping-and-parties season. Here’s this month’s prayer calendar to see you through Advent and Christmas!

This month’s calendar is decorated with pictures of pretty lights in the dark, which just about sums this month up. December is the darkest time of year, with the shortest days and the sun at its lowest in the sky; it’s no coincidence that this is when we choose to cover everything in fairy lights, and also to think about Christ’s birth into the world. If we pause at this time of year, and give some space from all the pre-Christmas chaos to reflection, it doesn’t take us long to notice the ‘dark’ out there in the world, and inside of us, stuff we hide away from even ourselves at times, stuff we’re ashamed of, stuff that’s happening around us that we just don’t want to see. And God can seem distant at times in it all too, absent even. But prayer can push through all of that, reaching out to maybe catch a glimpse of God in some way, maybe even bring a full lights-on revelation, and inspires us to keep working to bring about a more just and equal world, switching the lights on in the dark.
So this Advent some of us will be fasting (see more on how and why we’re feasting and fasting here, and more on Advent here) as a way of making that space in the busyness of this month to reconnect with God and with ourselves before the celebrations. Why not fast together with friends so you can share your experiences?
And of course the prayer calendar below has plenty of suggestions for great ways to use your prayer time this month too: Using creative skills like art or poetry to respond to a Bible passage, praying out loud with friends (but with clichéd words tabooed!) for SPEAK’s campaigns, and wrestling over dangerous prayers.
Why dangerous prayers? I really believe God wants to work through each of us to change this world and bring in His vision of a world of restored relationships. But that’s hard work, and will take courage and quite a bit of mould-breaking. If we pray honestly for God to use us however She wants, whatever the cost to ourselves, and keep praying and seeking out opportunities to be used for good, it could turn our lives upside down, but would seriously turn the lights on in this world! Just imagine how the world could look if all God’s people opened themselves up to God’s possibilities, genuinely whatever the cost. God answers prayer, so let’s all try wrestling (let’s face it, it’ll be a struggle if we really mean it) over some dangerous prayers this month and see where it takes us. (There’s some great dangerous prayers out there already that you could use, in hymns, worship songs and written by saints in times past.)
Download the prayer calendar below, and have an Advent of deep blessings and a Christmas of real celebration!