Prayers For A Covid Christmas


Covid Christmas


What does your prayer life look like in this covid Christmas season?


Mine could be summed up in three words:


Lord, have mercy


Well, maybe six words, because I often add, “Christ have mercy.” If I’m feeling especially verbose, I might say, “Lord, Jesus Christ, son of God, have mercy on me, a sinner.”


Lord, have mercy, what has happened to my ability to pray?


Prior to covid life, my prayers were writerly in tone: eloquent, loquacious, filled with fancy words, (like loquacious) and long-winded. My husband’s short and sweet prayers drove me crazy. The running joke in our house was me teasing, “I pray better than you do!”


Not anymore. 


I don’t think there’s ever been a time when I’ve prayed so much while using so few words.


Lord have mercy. It’s the perfect prayer, don’t you think? Some days I shorten it even further:




The shortest prayer


I mean, why beat around that burning bush? Let’s just slip off our shoes and get to the point:


We. Need. Help.


Sometimes I wonder if that desperate HELP! prayer isn’t the one the Father responds to the quickest.


If you’re a mom or dad, you know what I’m talking about. Don’t you come running when you hear your kids shout that word? And it doesn’t matter if they’re six or thirty-six. You drop everything and your feet hit the floor because your kid needs you.


I believe the Father does the same thing; He drops everything to rush to our aid. That one-word cry for help tells Him all He wants to know: we need Him. Desperately.


Guess what?


He loves to help


This is what He hears when you pray the help prayer:


“I’ve tried so hard to be good. I’ve done everything I know to do. I’ve prayed all the prayers, done my best to fix things, read my Bible, worked hard, but I’ve got nothing. Not one thing to show for it. I can’t do this by myself. I need you.”


Did you know that the word ‘pray’ comes from a root that means to beg? It’s the cry of a child. It’s the hardest prayer of all because it’s so humbling.


Help! is the beggar’s prayer.


Help! is the beggar’s prayer Share on X


Covid prayers


My original plan for this post was to create a liturgy of covid Christmas prayers for you, (eloquent and loquacious, of course ) for the days when it’s just too overwhelming to come up with your own.


A prayer for gift giving. Prayers for holiday traditions. For loved ones out of work, out of money, out of ideas; the ones you can’t be with this holiday season and prayers for the sense of normalcy we all miss in this season.


But friends, the truth is, I’m a beggar. My prayer pockets are pretty much empty these days. This previously, loquacious writer has been reduced to one word… one four-letter, humbling, ridiculously all-sufficient word:




Help is the simplest prayer


It’s short but no less powerful for it’s brevity. Will you pray it with me (and for me?) as I pray it for you?


“Help me, oh help me, God, my God…” Ps 109:26 Msg


Let me know how He answers! (I can hear His footsteps already!)


Father's footsteps


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4 thoughts on “Prayers For A Covid Christmas

  • December 9, 2020 at 11:57 pm

    So powerful for so little a word. You summed up what so many are trying to avoid….asking for help. We all need it yet are so hesitant to open up to receive it. Thank you for a wonderful cookie day!! I love seeing your beautiful face–even if its six feet away!!! Hugz

  • December 10, 2020 at 2:07 pm

    Susan, good morning! Often this year, usually after watching the news or hearing something that’s jarred my soul, I’ll say that same prayer.

    Lord, have mercy. Christ have mercy. Lord have mercy on us.

    He hears each cry for help. I’m so grateful!


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