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First Sunday of Advent

Predawn sky on a clear morning with white clouds. The silhouette of a forested shore over a glassy lake reflects the brightening sky.

© Beth A Richardson


God of Advent, kindle within me the flame of hope. As I walk through this day, may that hope remind me of your promise that something good is coming. Amen.

Carry These Words in Your Heart Today

Deepen my longing for you, O God.

Today's Picture

I can't think of anything more hopeful than a sunrise. I love being outside early in the morning as I walk the dog or head to the gym. There's something about early morning, greeting the new day and whatever it might bring. I took this photo with my iPhone one September morning.


What are your hopes, dreams, challenges as you enter this Advent season?

Book of the Day

Cover image for Openings: A Daybook
Openings: A Daybook of Saints, Psalms, and Prayer

Larry James Peacock

I used this book for several years in my morning devotional time. Each day includes a saint, a psalm (along with some reflections on that psalm), and information about a prayer practice. As I moved through the book, Larry introduced me to some ordinary people whose lives became blessings to others (saints). I learned more about ways to deepen my prayer—from breath prayers to lectio divina to discernment. Each morning, I sat in my chair in the corner of the living room, lit a candle, and followed Larry's gentle leading into my day. I'm excited that this book has recently been republished.

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Seeing young people, both men and women, participate in and write their testimonies at The Upper Room daily devotional writers’ workshop in Yangon, 2019, has been a highlight for me. The event and testimonies led to the publication of the first Lenten devotional in the Myanmar language. I truly believe that through The Upper Room ministry, the Lord will continue to equip people in Myanmar to grow and to share the gospel of Jesus Christ.”

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