Tuesday, December 7, 2010

When Christmas Includes Cancer... Pray for a Cure

Keeping Christmas Merry can be a source of stress for those who have lost loved ones are who are coping with cancer. People with cancer and their families and friends often approach the holidays with conflicting feelings: excitement, worry, hope, exhaustion, and happiness. Our December 5th worship services will include a time of prayer and healing as a response to the needs of our world. God's incredible love is dwelling among us. No matter what - the hope of Advent is that we can receive the life-giving gift of Jesus Christ today.

PRAY for a Cure..

CANDLE #1 Memory Candle

The first candle we light is the memory candle. Christmas is a time filled with memories of those we love. As we light this candle, lift your candle as you remember someone who wont be with you this Christmas.


Heaven at Last— by Horatius Bonar

Angel voices sweetly singing,

Echoes through the blue dome ringing,

News of wondrous gladness bringing...

Ah, 'tis heaven at last!

Now beneath us all the grieving,

All the wounded spirit's heaving,

All the woe of hopes deceiving...

Ah 'tis heaven at last!

Sin for ever left behind us,

Earthly visions cease to blind us,

Fleshly fetters cease to bind us...

Ah, 'tis heaven at last!

On the jasper threshold standing,

Like a pilgrim safely landing

See, the strange bright scene expanding...

Ah 'tis heaven at last!

What a city! what a glory!

Far beyond the brightest story

Of the ages old and hoary...

Ah, 'tis heaven at last!

Softest voices silver pealing,

Freshest fragrances spirit-healing,

Happy hymns around us stealing...

Ah, 'tis heaven at last!

Gone the vanity and folly,

Gone the dark and melancholy,

Come the joyous and the holy...

Ah, 'tis heaven at last!

Not a broken blossom yonder,

Not a link can snap asunder,

Stay'd the tempest, sheathed the thunder...

Ah, 'tis heaven at last!

Not a tear-drop ever falleth,

Not a pleasure ever palleth,

Song to song for evercalleth...

Ah, 'tis heaven at last!

Christ Himself the living splendour,

Christ the sunlight mild and tender;

Praises to the Lamb we render...

Ah, 'tis heaven at last!

Now at length the veil is rended,

Now the pilgrimage is ended,

And the saints their thrones ascended...

Ah, 'tis heaven at last!

Broken death's dread bands that bound us,

Life and victory around us,

Christ the King Himself hath crowned us...

Ah,'tis heaven at last!

Candle # 2 Survivors Candle- Conquerors and their Caregivers

The second candle we light is the survivors candle. As we light this candle, lift your candle in honor of someone who has been given the miracle of more time.

So many survivors are thankful for those who stood strong beside them.

So, as we light a candle for survivors may we also recognize the blessing of the strength of caregivers – Caregivers go unrecognized, yet they are survivors too.. Hear these words from the apostle Paul who describes the role of God in the life a caregiver–
“Praise be to the God who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves receive from God.”

To my Friend by Beverly Anderson

I stood one day at my wits end-

Then you came in the door, my friend;

And just your very presence brought

A ray of light for which I’d sought.

And as we sat and talked a while,

My frown soon changed into a smile.

New hope sprang forth, dispelling fear,

The path ahead became more clear.

you truly seemed to understand-

Your spoken word; warm clasp of hand

Were what I needed that bleak day,

And I thank God you passed my way.

Now, unafraid, with courage strong

I face each day with joyous song.

And if some day I see a friend

Who stands alone, at his wits end,

I pray that I, to him will be

The caring friend, you were to me.

CANDLE #3 For Those Battling Illness

The third candle is for those who are battling illness this day. As we light this candle,

hold up your candle as an outward expression of holding up their life to the grace of God.

His Everlasting Grace by Dolores Karides

I bow my head in reverence

And repeat my morning prayer,

I know God hears my every work

And keeps me in His care.

He knows when illness threatens me

And when I’m racked with pain,

He knows the hour I need His help

And makes me well again.

He knows my needs before I do

And gives me strength to cope,

He knows my faith in Him is strong

And fills my life with hope.

Then when the daylight dims and fades

I say my evening prayer

And know His love envelops, me,

For He is always there.

Now we invite all who desire prayer to come forward at this time. When you come forward, you may receive the blessing of a prayer with the oil. As people are coming forward, be in prayer for them.

Anointing at altar while song playing on organ, “On Eagles Wings”

Candle #4 Hope;

The last final candle we light is a candle of hope. Let us all hold up our light as we

declare that every battle fought on earth has already been won in heaven, the victory is

already there. For nothing can separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus.

What Cancer Cannot Do Author Unknown
Cancer is so limited...
It cannot cripple love.
It cannot shatter hope.
It cannot corrode faith.
It cannot eat away peace.
It cannot destroy confidence.
It cannot kill friendship.
It cannot shut out memories.

It cannot silence courage.

It cannot reduce eternal life.

It cannot quench the Spirit.

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