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Worship Resources for Transfiguration Sunday (2/14) and Ash Wednesday (2/17)

TRANSFIGURATION SUNDAY

IMAGE

Photo by Tamar Dolev.
Sunset from Norfolk Island. Feel free to use it. If you want to know more about this beautiful island, then visit http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Norfolk_Island

EUCHARISTIC PRAYER

by Barb Hedges-Goettl
‘God Almighty, we give you thanks for your creation and care,
for the words and witness of those who have gone before us,
and of those who live the Christian life alongside us.
We thank you for your steadfast, eternal presence,
even when we do not see, hear or follow you.

You sent your son Jesus to reveal you love.
Through his birth, life, death, and resurrection,
you reveal to us the way, the truth and the life–
not just at the Transfiguration on the mountain,
but in this very time and place
through the bread and cup you give us to share.
And so we praise and thank you
with these people in this place,
and with all your people across every time and place.

By the work of your Holy Spirit,
reveal to us that we eat together at the very table of Christ Jesus.
Make us one with you and with each other.

Through this holy meal,
teach us to know and follow your way.
Ground and settle us in your truth,
and make us sharers of your abundant and eternal life.

[Confirm what we know.
Reveal to us what we do not know.
Fill us up with whatever we lack.
Keep us faithfully in your service
until we feast together in your eternal kingdom.]

Following Christ Jesus, himself the Way, the Truth, and the Life,
we do what he commanded us to do:

Like him, we take bread, and having given thanks,
we break it and give it to the disciples, saying, as Christ Jesus did,
“Take, eat, this is my body broken for you.
Do this in remembrance of me.”

And, also like Jesus, we take the cup, saying
“This cup is the new covenant in my blood,
do this, whenever you drink it, in remembrance of me.”

Prayer of Confession

(from Psalm 51:1-4, New Living Translation adapted by Barb Hedges-Goettl)
 Have mercy on me, O God, because of your unfailing love. Forgive me, O God.
In your great compassion, blot out the stain of my sins. Forgive me, O God
Wash me clean from my guilt. Purify me from my sin. Forgive me, O God
For I recognize my rebellion; it haunts me day and night. Forgive me, O God
Against you, and you alone, have I sinned. Forgive me, O God
I have done what is evil in your sight. Forgive me, O God

=

Opening Prayer/Confession of Faith

by Barb Hedges-Goettl

We gather together as the church

When we can’t summon our “Jesus-loves-me” smiles

When we are not feeling happy or better

When traditions don’t seem to suffice

When we know all too well that we are ashes and dust

                    Then God calls us to return to God.

We gather together as the church

When we are not sure how to come before God

When we miss being in our building

When we miss being with our community

When all seems strange and uncertain           

          Then God calls us to return to God.

We gather together as the church

When we need to lament

When we are a grieving people, a weeping people,

When we are dependent on God for help and healing

When we seek God’s Kingdom until that Kingdom comes

          Then God calls us to return to God.

We gather together as the church

Because God creates in us a clean heart, a new and right spirit within us

Because God restores to us the joy of salvation, sustaining in us a willing spirit

Because God does not cast us away, or take God’s holy spirit from us

Because God restores to us the joy of God’s salvation, sustaining in us a willing spirit

 we gather together as the church. THANKS BE TO GOD!

Children’s sermon (good for grownups too!)

Found at https://katyandtheword.com/2021/01/12/lent-ideas-with-children-narrative-lectionary-luke/

JANUARY 12, 2021 BY KATYANDTHEWORD.COM
Lent Ideas with Children: Narrative Lectionary Luke

Children Ideas: Meditate on Dirt together (Ideally with dirt): What is dirt? 
Discuss God as creator and make clay/playdo people together, Bury the Alleluias: http://worshipingwithchildren.blogspot.com/2014/01/burying-alleluia-for-lent.html
(Post includes an image of Pigpen from Peanuts, with his quote about where his dirt has been before it landed on him!)

See also https://worshipwords.co.uk/transfiguration and https://worshipwords.co.uk/ash-wednesday and nfleshed,  a non profit creating and facilitating resources or spiritual nourishment for collective liberation, which can be found at https://enfleshed.com/pages/ash-wednesday

Commentary by Daniella Zsupan-Jerome on Rafael’s painting Transfiguration on the possessed boy and the female figure depicted there! https://www.loyolapress.com/catholic-resources/liturgical-year/lent/arts-and-faith-for-lent/cycle-a/arts-and-faith-week-2-of-lent-cycle-a/ in text or https://youtu.be/GYo5VyNv7fg in video

Ignatian prayer exercise to match the above art commentary exercise/https://www.ignatianspirituality.com/arts-faith-lent-second-sunday-imaginative-prayer-exercise/

Book Review: Come Eat with Me by Rob Douglas

COME EAT WITH ME by Rob Douglas. Eugene, OR: RESOURCE Publications, 2018. Ix + 137 pages.

In this easy-to-read book, Rev. Rob Douglas focuses on God’s invitation to “Come eat with me” to explore hospitality and the roles of consummate host and ultimate guest. Douglas notes that God and Jesus take on the roles of guest and of host at the meals described in Scripture. For the followers of Jesus, participating in God’s table means entering deliberately into a relationship with God as guest but also taking on a commitment to serve as host: providing hospitality, welcoming strangers and providing spaces for people to grow and develop. In taking up these themes, Douglas provides content from authors addressing hospitality while providing his own insights and conclusions.

 

Douglas alternates between chapters that imaginatively re-tell biblical “meal” stories and chapters providing illustrations and broader messages drawn from those re-tellings. For example, the first chapter is titled “Invitation to a Garden,” with the subheading “How God the Maker, the consummate host, prepared the table immaculately for his first guests.” This chapter provides a fictive re-telling of the story of Adam and Eve, closing with the chapter and verse references for those who want to read the biblical version. The second chapter, “Finding Annie,” tells the story of Annie McDonald’s experiences of institutionalization as a child with a disability and her journey to attaining a college education and becoming a speaker and author. Douglas draws on Annie’s story to illustrate his concern for God’s invitation as being an invitation to a relational community, not an institutionalized meal. He further illustrates this concept with his interpretation of the story of Cain and Abel’s offerings.

 

Later chapters address flexibility between being host and being guest (Abraham and Sarah and their three guests); empowering people to host (Elijah and the widow); a meal of emancipation (Passover); a unique meal with boundaries (quail and manna in the wilderness); hosting God (building the portable ark of the covenant); invitation to a new land (Joshua’s entry into the Promised Land); Jesus as host and guest (the wedding at Canaa); Jesus as the guest of an unworthy host (Zacchaeus); principles of guesting and hosting (the story of the great banquet); God the host shows grace and creativity (feeding of the 5,000); Jesus invites a traitor and his friends to dine (Last Supper); Jesus as host and guest (the Road to Emmaus); a meal invites greater commitment (Breakfast on the Beach); eating together across boundaries (Peter and Cornelius); and God’s ultimate bridal feast (the Final Banquet).

 

Douglas wrote his book to help those considering the Christian faith and to provide new perspectives to those who are already Christians. For the former, reading the actual Bible passages themselves would be an important counterbalance to the more fanciful re-tellings of the book. For the latter, familiar stories may yield new fruit. In particular, the flexibility of the roles of host and guest as taken up by God and Jesus and their followers may provide some needed food for thought. Pastors may also find the re-tellings, illustrations and thematic expositions helpful for sermon-writing.

 

Ruminating on Grilled Cheese and Apple Juice

An article I wrote some time ago about a boy with disabilities whose communion meal consisted of grilled cheese and apple juice. I am beginning to think about what this means in our bring-your-own or use-what-you-have communion.


“Blessed is the congregation that invites all worshipers—including those which our culture may label in different ways as ‘disabled’—to full, conscious and active participation in corporate worship.”
Word Communion of Reformed Churches, “Worshiping the Triune God”                              Revised June 2010
http://wcrc.ch/wp-content/uploads/2015/04/WorshipingTheTriuneGod-English.pdf


How is that all are included in the body of Christ? The above worship proverb of the World Communion of Reformed Churches focuses on the participation of those who may be labeled “disabled” in corporate worship. However, the more basic question may well be the full, conscious and active participation of all persons in the communion of the church–a communion that goes beyond corporate worship to the heart of what it means to belong to Christ Jesus.

The question of being a part of communion and all that it means was a crucial one for the worship class I taught recently. One student in the class raised the question of the role of communion for her autistic son, whom we will call Ethan. Ethan, who was about ten years old, was not a regular attendee at corporate worship. Instead, the church was providing a special Sunday School class for Ethan and a few others during the worship service.

The whole host of questions that arise about the best arrangement in such situations is beyond the scope of our discussion here. In this particular case, the Sunday School class seemed to be a better placement for the students than attending worship. Ethan’s mom was not questioning this arrangement; instead, she was asking about how Ethan is part of communion.

With regard to Ethan’s literal participation in the sacrament itself, one of the barriers is obviously his absence from worship itself. It is not unusual for someone to bring the Lord’s Supper to those who are teaching during worship. This practice could be expanded to include the provision of the sacrament to the students in the special Sunday School. This communion could follow the model used when providing communion to others who are not present at worship, such as those who are homebound. Thus, rather
than simply stopping in the Sunday School room with the elements, during or at the end of the church’s worship service the pastor and/or some congregants could share with the Sunday School class a brief message appropriate to them along with the words of institution, the elements, and a prayer and/or a song.

Suggesting this potential solution, however, revealed additional barriers to communion. Ethan’s mom noted that the list of things that Ethan will eat is rather limited. The closest he will come to eating plain bread and drinking grape juice is grilled cheese and apple juice. Some worship aficionados might compare Ethan’s preferences to the teenage desire to celebrate the sacrament with chips or cookies and soda. In this situation, however, providing elements specific to Ethan’s condition is more akin to providing gluten-free bread for those who are gluten intolerant.

While grilled cheese and apple juice do not, as one participant in the conversation in class noted, represent “the church’s communion,” this response places the emphasis on the wrong syllable. Communion ultimately does not belong to the church, but to Christ Jesus who is the host. The accent note of the question of Ethan’s involvement in communion is not what the elements or the church’s communion should be, but on the availability of Christ Jesus to Ethan. Thus, the communion offered (or not offered) to Ethan goes beyond the bread and the cup–or even grilled cheese and apple juice, to the question of whether Ethan is a part of the body of Christ.

On the level of Christ Jesus’ open invitation to join with him in communion, Ethan is included. Jesus offers himself to and for Ethan and his Sunday School class. Jesus eats with them, as he did with a wide variety of people during his earthly ministry. While the church is more comfortable if those partaking of communion can verbalize what it is they are receiving, the provision and partaking of food can also be seen as providing its own self-evident meaning. Food offered and partaken signals fellowship, communion, and relationship. It represents an action of sharing, of gift and reception. Persons with
disabilities and elderly folks with limited language and/or cognition are able to participate in the meal and hence in its underlying meaning.

On the level of the local church body, Ethan and his Sunday School class are also included. The message that Ethan and his class are part of the communion of God, and are invited to eat with Jesus, should be primary to whatever meal practices used. This ultimate message of being part of the fellowship of God is of greater importance than the elements used to convey that message. Actively sharing communion with this group of youngsters may mean offering Ethan or his whole class a bite of grilled cheese and a sip of apple juice as their communion fare.

Conversation with the Sunday School class during its communion meals, whatever the fare, could focus on communion themes. Such themes include the idea that Jesus eats with all of us, a lesson perhaps aided by having a picture or doll of Jesus present for the conversation and meal. Another lesson could focus on the idea that we all eat together, a concept that could be aided by photos or videos of Christians communing the world over. The lesson that, like Jesus, we help feed people, could be taught by helping with a feeding program. The reality that the Lord’s Supper is a thanksgiving meal, a party meal, and a memorial meal could each be enacted through how the meal is laid and celebrated. The fact that the meal marks us as God’s people could be indicated by sharing other tokens representing the local church’s fellowship.

Since communion is a meal of the church, on occasion the church body should participate in the Sunday School class’s communion and, vice-versa, the class should participate in communion during the community’s worship. Communion of the class and the worshiping body should include the chance for the congregation to receive from and with the Sunday School class a growing awareness of the myriad of meanings and expressions of this embodied experience of Christ Jesus’ living presence. The very
embodied nature of the sacrament makes participation and non-participation loud and poignant bearers of the message of who is a part of this communion and who is not. Let us make sure Ethan and his classmates know that they are a part of this communion, of this fellowship, of this body—the body of Christ Jesus.

 

PSALM 10

Using the Message version of Psalm 10and Rise Up in reference/deference to Andra Day – Rise Up [Official Music Video] [Inspiration Version]
h


1-2 God, are you avoiding me? Where are you when I need you? Rise up, Lord! God, lift up your hand! Full of hot air, the wicked are hot on the trail of the poor.Trip them up, tangle them up in their fine-tuned plots. Rise up, Lord! God, lift up your hand!
9 They mark the luckless, then wait like a hunter in a blind;When the poor wretch wanders too close, they stab him in the back.
Rise up, Lord! God, lift up your hand!
11He thinks God has dumped him, he’s sure that God is indifferent to his plight. 12Time to get up, God—get moving. The luckless think they’re Godforsaken.
Rise up, Lord! God, lift up your hand!
14 But you know all about it—the contempt, the abuse..16 Search and destroy every sign of crime.
Rise up, Lord! God, lift up your hand!
16God’s grace and order wins; godlessness loses.
17-18 The victim’s faint pulse picks up; the hearts of the hopeless pump red blood as you hear their cries.
Rise up, Lord! God, lift up your hand!

The Pastoral is Political–But Not Partisan

When one of you says, “I’m on Paul’s side,” and another says,
“I’m for Apollos,” aren’t you being totally infantile?
 Who do you think Paul is, anyway? Or Apollos, for that matter?
Servants, both of us—servants who waited on you as you gradually learned
to entrust your lives to our mutual Master.
We each carried out our servant assignment.
1 Corinthians 3:4-5 (The Message)

The pastoral is political because power is a fact of life and Christians, including pastors, are called to address that power. When people-in-the-pew think of being political, they frequently think about being partisan. The pastor-in-the-pulpit must be guided by the understanding that what we preach is the Gospel, not the GOP or the Democratic Party—not to mention that a church that is partisan ways endangers its tax-exempt status!

The U.S. today faces the question of who/what is our telos, our end, our goal.  This is a time to honestly examine who we are and where we are going. While sometimes we are urged that “we are better than this,” somehow the “this” is still here. While we wish to deny it, “this” is nonetheless the current version of who the U.S. is and what the U.S. is doing (and not doing). At this time, this is who we are. And if this does not accord with our founding documents and our aspirational goals, one or the other needs to change.

Do we believe that “all [people] are created equal”? Do we believe that everyone should be both protected by, and subject to, the law? Do we believe that certain basic rights belong to all people, even if they are not like us and/or not US citizens?

In 2018, the Presbyterian Church (USA) endorsed a Statement of Honest Patriotism. It begins with a statement of support for those who work in public service (career employees, elected officials, members of the judiciary) as part of God’s design for creation. It then lifts up truth as a core value for both citizens and Christians. This truth is often complex. This truth rejects sensationalizing conflicts and demonizing other human beings and peoples (including those doing such demonizing). It supports the fundamental right to vote, and condemns voter suppression through gerrymandering and restrictive voter registration, vote-by- mail, and poll site availability. The freedom      to disagree about what is true and false, is protected by our freedom of speech. This does not mitigate the responsibility to hold those who speak accountable for truthfulness.

Freedom of speech means having access to information in a variety of ways from a variety of sources. Hate speech is excluded, as it seeks to silence others’ voices. Censorship and data suppression are prohibited. The First Amendment likewise supports peaceful protests, which must not be subject to the overreach of federal forces or the police.

The question of who/what is our telos is not just a question for the electorate. It is the crux of Christian preaching. If we believe that Jesus taught us to love our neighbor,            and did not discriminate against certain kinds of neighbors (see the “Good Samaritan”), then we must do the same. As one seminary’s media campaign put it, love your _____________  neighbor: your gay neighbor, your liberal neighbor, your fascist neighbor, your black neighbor, your Asian neighbor, your poor neighbor, your rich neighbor—any kind of neighbor you have, love them!

If we begin our journey by believing that all people are created in God’s image, then we need to treat them as such. When tempted to treat someone badly (even if that impulse is the result of them in turn having treated someone else badly), we should think about if we would treat God that way.

Knowing that each person is created in God’s image, then justice becomes a mandate. As Cornel West stated, “Justice is love in public.” While in many cases justice would be an improvement over what we’ve got, justice could in fact be the low bar. There are instances in which justice is not enough, in which some kind of making-up-for-what-has-been-lost or taken is in order. It’s like the graphic of equity versus equality—children of varying heights need different sized boxes to see through the fence to the baseball game. Giving them all the same height box won’t do it.

So while partisan politics remain out-of-bounds for preaching, the principles that undergird decision-making, the values that we hold that make us vote the ways that we do, should be shaped by God. And that is what we set about to do by preaching. That preaching—and our practices—should match what God requires of us—to act justly, to love mercy, and to walk humbly with our God. And so the pastoral is political—but not partisan. Please, God, make it so.

Narrative Lectionary: A bulletin, some hymns & liturgical resources for 1 Corinthians 13

Bulletin at https://1drv.ms/w/s!AuB3z496aTHTgcRDOTDCk1ldf4oVdg

SONGS

+13.1–14.1  (chapter 13:1-14:1)

126.4 (PCUSA hymnal number.verse) Come, Holy Spirit, Heavenly Dove

136.2 Sovereign Lord of All Creation 318 Gracious Spirit, Holy Ghost * 350R Fill My Cup 367 Jesu, Jesu, Fill Us with Your Love 372.2 Lord, I Want to Be a Christian 374 Lord, Make Us Servants of Your Peace 386.5 O for a World 398 There’s a Sweet, Sweet Spirit 405 What Does the Lord Require 407.2 When a Poor One 433 There’s a Spirit in the Air 531 Not for Tongues of Heaven’s Angels * 533 O Perfect Love 534 The Grace of Life Is Theirs 536.2 Lord, Make Us More Holy

13.1-3 335 Though I May Speak *

13.4-7 9.3 O Come, O Come, Emmanuel 76.4 My Song Is Love Unknown 85 What Wondrous Love Is This 347 Forgive Our Sins as We Forgive 357.2+3 O Master, Let Me Walk with Thee 366.3 Jesus, Thy Boundless Love to Me 457.4 I Greet Thee, Who My Sure Redeemer Art

13.12 49.4 Once in Royal David’s City 139.4 Come, Thou Almighty King 278.2+4 Our God, to Whom We Turn 301.4 Lord Jesus, Think on Me 310.1 Jesus, the Very Thought of Thee

327.3 O Word of God Incarnate 340.3 Eternal Light, Shine in My Heart 376.4 Love Divine, All Loves Excelling 399.4 We Walk by Faith and Not by Sight 426.5 Lord, Speak to Me, That I May Speak 442.4 The Church’s One Foundation 485.2 To God Be the Glory 519.4 Thee We Adore, O Hidden Savior, Thee

13.13 545.4 Now, on Land and Sea Descending

Liturgical Resources:

https://re-worship.blogspot.com/2013/07/prayer-index-acts-through-revelation.html

includes
Prayer Reflection: Which Three

(based on 1 Corinthians 13: 1-13)

“…Now faith, hope and live abide, these three…”


doubt moves in
and props its feet
at the hearth of my soul,
warming them
on the coals of my unbelief;
while faith 
rents space
for a few days
in the summers of my life.

despair is the frayed,
soft corduroy jacket
that fits comfortably
on my shoulders
while hope
is a hair shirt
i resist wearing.

impatience is the face
i put on
each morning
in order to greet the world,
while love
is that mask
i wear occasionally,
removing it
when i look in the mirror,
not recognizing myself.

which three will abide in me, O God?

which three?

Amen.

~ Copyright © Thom M. Shuman. Posted on Prayers4Today.  http://prayersfortoday.blogspot.ca/

Prayer

 

Our Father,

each day is a little life,

each night a tiny death;

help us to live with faith and hope and love.

Lift our duty above drudgery;

let not our strength fail, or the vision fade,

in the heat and burden of the day.

 

O God, make us patient and pitiful one with another

in the fret and jar of life,

remembering that each fights a hard fight

and walks a lonely way.

Forgive us, Lord, if we hurt our fellow souls;

teach us a gentler tone, a sweeter charity of words,

and a more healing touch.

Sustain us, O God, when we must face sorrow;

give us courage for the day and hope for the morrow.

Day unto day may we lay hold of thy hand and look up into thy face,

whatever befall,

until our work is finished and the day is done. Amen.

 

~ Francis of Assisi, 1181-1226.  Posted on thisischurch.com http://thisischurch.com/

From “Love” on worshipblogspot


Prayer of Commitment

Holy God, before time you named us
Through time you redeem us
You call us, precious in your sight
May we love as you love.

Holy One, through the turbulent waters
Make us steady, your hands
Holding strong the fragile and weak
May we love as you love.

Gracious God, may the fruits of our lives
be food for the hungry, bread
clothing, shelter, fire, water, Word
May we love as you love.

God of justice, remove the chaff
Of our lives that keep us from
Hearing, following, Your call
May we love as you love.

Loving God, take this day our fears our
Worries, distractions, and all
Turn them into wheat, heart food
May we love as you love. Amen

~ written by Terri and posted on RevGalBlogPals. http://revgalblogpals.blogspot.ca/

Our bulletin is at

SONGS

+13.1–14.1  (chapter 13:1-14:1)

126.4 (PCUSA hymnal number.verse) Come, Holy Spirit, Heavenly Dove

136.2 Sovereign Lord of All Creation 318 Gracious Spirit, Holy Ghost * 350R Fill My Cup 367 Jesu, Jesu, Fill Us with Your Love 372.2 Lord, I Want to Be a Christian 374 Lord, Make Us Servants of Your Peace 386.5 O for a World 398 There’s a Sweet, Sweet Spirit 405 What Does the Lord Require 407.2 When a Poor One 433 There’s a Spirit in the Air 531 Not for Tongues of Heaven’s Angels * 533 O Perfect Love 534 The Grace of Life Is Theirs 536.2 Lord, Make Us More Holy

13.1-3 335 Though I May Speak *

13.4-7 9.3 O Come, O Come, Emmanuel 76.4 My Song Is Love Unknown 85 What Wondrous Love Is This 347 Forgive Our Sins as We Forgive 357.2+3 O Master, Let Me Walk with Thee 366.3 Jesus, Thy Boundless Love to Me 457.4 I Greet Thee, Who My Sure Redeemer Art

13.12 49.4 Once in Royal David’s City 139.4 Come, Thou Almighty King 278.2+4 Our God, to Whom We Turn 301.4 Lord Jesus, Think on Me 310.1 Jesus, the Very Thought of Thee

327.3 O Word of God Incarnate 340.3 Eternal Light, Shine in My Heart 376.4 Love Divine, All Loves Excelling 399.4 We Walk by Faith and Not by Sight 426.5 Lord, Speak to Me, That I May Speak 442.4 The Church’s One Foundation 485.2 To God Be the Glory 519.4 Thee We Adore, O Hidden Savior, Thee

13.13 545.4 Now, on Land and Sea Descending

Liturgical Resources:

https://re-worship.blogspot.com/2013/07/prayer-index-acts-through-revelation.html

includes
Prayer Reflection: Which Three

(based on 1 Corinthians 13: 1-13)

“…Now faith, hope and live abide, these three…”


doubt moves in
and props its feet
at the hearth of my soul,
warming them
on the coals of my unbelief;
while faith 
rents space
for a few days
in the summers of my life.

despair is the frayed,
soft corduroy jacket
that fits comfortably
on my shoulders
while hope
is a hair shirt
i resist wearing.

impatience is the face
i put on
each morning
in order to greet the world,
while love
is that mask
i wear occasionally,
removing it
when i look in the mirror,
not recognizing myself.

which three will abide in me, O God?

which three?

Amen.

~ Copyright © Thom M. Shuman. Posted on Prayers4Today.  http://prayersfortoday.blogspot.ca/

 

Prayer

Our Father,

each day is a little life,

each night a tiny death;

help us to live with faith and hope and love.

Lift our duty above drudgery;

let not our strength fail, or the vision fade,

in the heat and burden of the day.

 

O God, make us patient and pitiful one with another

in the fret and jar of life,

remembering that each fights a hard fight

and walks a lonely way.

Forgive us, Lord, if we hurt our fellow souls;

teach us a gentler tone, a sweeter charity of words,

and a more healing touch.

Sustain us, O God, when we must face sorrow;

give us courage for the day and hope for the morrow.

Day unto day may we lay hold of thy hand and look up into thy face,

whatever befall,

until our work is finished and the day is done. Amen.

 

~ Francis of Assisi, 1181-1226.  Posted on thisischurch.com http://thisischurch.com/

From “Love” on worshipblogspot


Prayer of Commitment

Holy God, before time you named us
Through time you redeem us
You call us, precious in your sight
May we love as you love.

Holy One, through the turbulent waters
Make us steady, your hands
Holding strong the fragile and weak
May we love as you love.

Gracious God, may the fruits of our lives
be food for the hungry, bread
clothing, shelter, fire, water, Word
May we love as you love.

God of justice, remove the chaff
Of our lives that keep us from
Hearing, following, Your call
May we love as you love.

Loving God, take this day our fears our
Worries, distractions, and all
Turn them into wheat, heart food
May we love as you love. Amen

~ written by Terri and posted on RevGalBlogPals. http://revgalblogpals.blogspot.ca/

Narrative Lectionary: Acts 17:1-9 Resources

Preaching and Liturgical Resources: https://1drv.ms/w/s!AuB3z496aTHTgcMWqpKuBL00L5PwjQ

Bulletin at https://1drv.ms/w/s!AuB3z496aTHTgcMylW7bJSVRMksuTg

Sermon at https://1drv.ms/w/s!AuB3z496aTHTgcMwymVyiyIf2rE_FA

If you use my stuff, please use my name! (or the name of whoever’s stuff it is)

Acts 3:1-10 bulletin and sermon

Bulletin: https://1drv.ms/w/s!AuB3z496aTHTgcMSG-DLOlNhpocklg

Sermon: https://1drv.ms/w/s!AuB3z496aTHTgcMJCaCfbGyjdhB7Mw

Cover photo: https://www.biblegateway.com/audio/dramatized/niv/Acts.3

Psalms in a Time of Sickness: Psalm 4

Psalm 4

O God, you are right and just and true.

When I call with a loud cry,

    You answer me.

You widen the straits of distress

   that bind and besiege me.

When my world is small, narrow, and cramped,

  You give me room to breathe.

When I am stuck between a rock and hard place,

   You let me loose in your broad, wide pasture.

You bend to me in kindness and mercy,

    understanding my prayer.

How long will people hurt God’s reputation

     and damage God’s honor and glory?

How long will we love empty words,

     seeking lies and requiring falsehoods,

     and yearning after worthless things?

Set us aside for yourself, O Lord.

     Make us your good and faithful ones,

     Your kind and godly ones,

     Your saints by Your mercy.

O Lord, hear me when I call to you.

When I am trembling and quivering,

       Agitated and disturbed,

       Angry and disquieted,

       Worried and anxious,

             Keep me from sin.

Inspire me to meditate on you at night.

    Put me to bed and tuck me in with your comfort.

    Whisper to the ears of my heart, that I may hear you.

    Quiet and calm me in my whole being.

I confess my dependence on you.

    Enable me to wait upon you

    With confidence and patience.

I offer myself in thanksgiving;

    I give myself to you because of your mercy.

    I respond to your love with love of my own.

    I respond to the all you give me

        With my all.

I put my trust in you.

    I hold out my hand for your hand.

    I offer my heart to your heart.

    I offer my mind to your purposes.

    I offer my body to your body.

Be my hope,

      my boldness,

      my security,

      my confidence,

             my God.

There are many who say:

       “Oh, that we might perceive some good!”

Shine your light upon us, O God!

        Make your presence dawn upon us.

Give us joy and gladness

        at our deepest heart of hearts–

Joy greater than a bountiful harvest

         or material riches.

Bestow gladness in our very being,

         A share in your joy.

We will lie down and sleep;

         We will be stilled and remain at peace,

         dwelling in God’s house,

         where we can safely lie down.

Thanks be to God.

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