Year A

Christ the King! (Christ the King Sunday, Year A)

christ the kingYearly Rhythm

23rd November 2014, Christ the King Sunday
Year A, Colour: White/Gold

Christ the King Sunday was first celebrated in 1925 in the face of certain governments declaring that they were the ultimate authority on all matters including religion.  It declares the Christ in our King, the ultimate authority.

Daily Rhythm

Bringing worship into the everyday

 

Devotional Diary  17 – 23 November 2014

DOWNLOAD THE PDF HERE

Readings for “Christ the King” Sunday, 23 November, with thanks to www.gbod.org

Ezekiel 34:11-16, 20-24To the people scattered in exile in Babylon (Iraq), the prophet Ezekiel declares the word of the Lord: “I will seek out my sheep… I will rescue them… I will bring them into their own land.” To the Babylonian rulers, God announces that it is God, and not they, who will judge the covenant people, and that God, and not they, will establish a shepherd over them, a descendent of David.

Psalm 100.

Ephesians 1:15-23. Paul reminds the Christians in Ephesus of the glorious inheritance of all believers. The same power that raised Christ from death and placed him above every imaginable power is at work on our behalf.

Matthew 25:31-46The final public teaching of Jesus. At the Great Assize,” the final Judgment, the King to Come, seated upon a throne and surrounded by the angels, will judge all based on how they have treated “the least of these.”

LEARN MORE ABOUT THE READINGS HERE

Monday:

Adoration Focus: We sing: “God is good all the time, and all the time God is good!”  Each day thank God for his goodness.  Today: Abundance of creation.

Confession: This week examine the burdens that you are trying to carry on your own.  How can you hand them over to God?  Today: Personal fears…

The Word: Use the readings above or your own Scripture reading plan.

Seeking the Kingdom

Shared Focus: In our shared focus you are encouraged to pray for those things that burden you and in which you need to trust God “In His time…”

Personal prayers: (Use this section to list people you need to pray for or situations of personal concern that you need to bring before God in prayer)

Dedication: Lord, I lay all of my burdens down at your feet…

Tuesday:

Adoration Focus: We sing: “God is good all the time, and all the time God is good!”  Each day thank God for his goodness.  Today:  Just and merciful judge.

Confession: This week examine the burdens that you are trying to carry on your own.  How can you hand them over to God? Today: Family….

The Word:

Seeking the Kingdom:

Shared Focus: In our shared focus you are encouraged to pray for those things that burden you and in which you need to trust God “In His time…”

Personal Prayers:

 Dedication: Lord, I lay all of my burdens down at your feet…

Wednesday: 

Adoration Focus: We sing: “God is good all the time, and all the time God is good!”  Each day thank God for his goodness.  Today:  Longing for every single human being.

Confession: This week examine the burdens that you are trying to carry on your own.  How can you hand them over to God? Today: Country…

The Word:

Seeking the Kingdom:

Shared Focus: In our shared focus you are encouraged to pray for those things that burden you and in which you need to trust God “In His time…”

Personal prayers:

Dedication: Lord, I lay all of my burdens down at your feet…

Thursday:

Adoration Focus: We sing: “God is good all the time, and all the time God is good!”  Each day thank God for his goodness.  Today:  He will transform all things in a wonderfully creative way.

Confession: This week examine the burdens that you are trying to carry on your own.  How can you hand them over to God? Today: Future security…

The Word:

Seeking the Kingdom:

Shared Focus: In our shared focus you are encouraged to pray for those things that burden you and in which you need to trust God “In His time…”

Personal prayers:

Dedication: Lord, I lay all of my burdens down at your feet…

Friday:

Adoration Focus: We sing: “God is good all the time, and all the time God is good!”  Each day thank God for his goodness.  Today:  He will always love you.

Confession: This week examine the burdens that you are trying to carry on your own.  How can you hand them over to God? Today: The poor and suffering…

The Word:

Seeking the Kingdom:

Shared Focus: In our shared focus you are encouraged to pray for those things that burden you and in which you need to trust God “In His time…”.

Personal prayers:

Dedication: Lord, I lay all of my burdens down at your feet…

Saturday:

Adoration Focus: We sing: “God is good all the time, and all the time God is good!”  Each day thank God for his goodness.  Today: He never hesitates to suffer with us.

Confession: This week examine the burdens that you are trying to carry on your own.  How can you hand them over to God? Today: Health…

The Word:

Seeking the Kingdom:

Shared Focus: In our shared focus you are encouraged to pray for those things that burden you and in which you need to trust God “In His time…”.

Personal prayers:

Dedication: Lord, I lay all of my burdens down at your feet…

Sunday:

Adoration Focus: We sing: “God is good all the time, and all the time God is good!”  Each day thank God for his goodness.  Today: He allows us to enter his gate with thanksgiving!

Confession: This week examine the burdens that you are trying to carry on your own.  How can you hand them over to God? Today: Your salvation…

The Word:

Seeking the Kingdom:

Shared Focus: In our shared focus you are encouraged to pray for those things that burden you and in which you need to trust God “In His time…”.

Personal prayers:

Dedication: Lord, I lay all of my burdens down at your feet…

 

                                                                            

Weekly Rhythm

Exploring Scripture
Joining our stories with the stories of God’s people

DOWNLOAD THE PDF HERE

Notes in italics with thanks to www.gbod.org

 

Ezekiel 34:11-16, 20-24.

To the people scattered in exile in Babylon (Iraq), the prophet Ezekiel declares the word of the Lord: “I will seek out my sheep… I will rescue them… I will bring them into their own land.” To the Babylonian rulers, God announces that it is God, and not they, who will judge the covenant people, and that God, and not they, will establish a shepherd over them, a descendent of David.

 

The leaders of the nation are its shepherds.  They receive from the sheep, in return they must care for the sheep. Sometimes (often?) the leaders fail in this call and neglect their call.  Here we see that God is faithful in his care as he gathers the sheep.

How can we allow God to shepherd us?  How are we called to be shepherds?

 Psalm 100.

What a wonderful call to praise.  God is above all.  He has created us, he cares for us (the shepherd. We are called to experience the actual presence of God in his love, faithfulness and goodness.

Recall your best moments of worship.  How did worship open your eyes to God?  What did it affirm about God?

Ephesians 1:15-23.

Paul reminds the Christians in Ephesus of the glorious inheritance of all believers. The same power that raised Christ from death and placed him above every imaginable power is at work on our behalf.

This passage affirms many characteristics that are only to be seen in the expected Messiah.  This passage paints an amazing picture of Jesus.  As you read through it picture the Christ and note his different attributes as listed here.  Are you called into worship?

Matthew 25:31-46.

The final public teaching of Jesus. At the Great Assize,” the final Judgment, the King to Come, seated upon a throne and surrounded by the angels, will judge all based on how they have treated “the least of these.”

Looking at this parable what would you describe as the nature of Christian mission and service?
What is the criterion for accountability and judgement?
How is Christ manifest in the hungry or the stranger?  What are the implications for us?

 

Praying the Lectionary Readings

 

Call to Worship: The Kingship of Christ

 

Litany

 

Thanks and praise to you,

Jesus Christ, King and Lord of all,

given the name above every other name

 

Jesus, King and Lord of all,

we worship and adore you.

 

King of righteousness, King of peace,

enthroned at the right hand

of Majesty on high

 

Jesus, King and Lord of all,

we worship and adore you

 

Great high priest,

living for ever to intercede for us;

 

Jesus, King and Lord of all,

we worship and adore you.

 

Pioneer of our salvation,

you bring us to glory

through your death and resurrection;

 

Jesus, King and Lord of all,

we worship and adore you.

 

Every knee bows to you;

every tongue confesses,

you are King of kings

and Lord of Lords,

to the glory of God the Father.

 

~ copyright © John Leach/administered by The Jubilate Group.  Posted on The Jubilate Group website.http://www.jubilate.co.uk/liturgy/liturgy/kingship_call_to_worship

 

Prayer to the King of Glory

 

O Jesus,
You are the King of Glory,
You are the Lord of Lords, and King of Kings.
And we pray that your Kingdom will reign forever
in our hearts and in this world.

Lord, we pray for your Kingdom to come here now,
bringing a kingdom of justice, righteousness, hope, love,
peace, mercy and grace for all.
Lord, we ask that you rule in our hearts,
lead in this world and govern over your kingdom.

But Lord honestly,
We often have our own plans and agendas
And we want to be rulers of our world.
Forgive us for those times.
And Lord we live in a time that would rather idolize the King of Pop
than worship you.
Help us to know how to live as your Kingdom People in these times.

And Lord , there are a lot of Kings in this world who terrorize, over tax, humiliate,
over exploit, and abuse those they are to lead.
Help us to spread the good news of the different kind of King you are.
Lord, thank you for being a different kind of King.
Thank you for your goodness and kindness in our lives.
Thank you for your generosity.
Thank you for loving us.
Thank you for your Kingdom that is unlike any
Kingdom in this world

 

~ written by Rev Abi, and posted on RevGalBlogPals blog. http://revgalblogpals.blogspot.ca/


Prayer Litany

 

May your Kingdom come soon. May your will be done here on earth,
just as it is in heaven.  Matthew 6:10

 

Into places of conflict

may Your Kingdom come.

 

Into the heart of the terrorist

may Your Kingdom come.

 

Into the heart of the soldier

may Your Kingdom come.

 

Into the heart of the politician

may Your Kingdom come.

 

Into the heart of one bereaved by war

may Your Kingdom come.

 

Into the heart of one made hungry

may Your Kingdom come.

 

Into the heart of one made homeless

may Your Kingdom come.

 

Into the heart of one who is in despair

may Your Kingdom come.

 

Into the heart of one who is ill

may Your Kingdom come.

 

Into the heart of one who has been abused

may Your Kingdom come.

 

Into the heart of one who is addicted

may Your Kingdom come.

 

Into the heart of one who is faced with unpayable debt

may Your Kingdom come.

 

Into the heart of the lonely

may Your Kingdom come.

 

Into the heart of the fearful

may Your Kingdom come.

 

Into the heart of the depressed

may Your Kingdom come.

 

Into the heart of one we wish to pray for…

may Your Kingdom come.

 

Into the heart of our world.

may Your Kingdom come.

 

~ adapted from http://wellsprings.org.uk/ and posted on Third Space blog.http://third-space.org.uk/blog

 

Blessing: You Who Bless

You who bless

 

“Come, you who are blessed,” Jesus says;

“for I was hungry and you gave me food,

I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink,

I was a stranger and you welcomed me,

I was naked and you gave me clothing,

I was sick and you took care of me,

 was in prison and you visited me.”

Matthew 25: 34-36

 

You who are yourselves a blessing

 

who know that to feed the hungering

is to bless

 

and to give drink to those who thirst

is to bless

 

who know the blessing in welcoming

the stranger

 

and giving clothes to those who have none

 

who know to care for the sick

is blessing

 

and blessing

to visit the prisoner:

 

may the blessing you have offered

now turn itself toward you

 

to welcome and to embrace you

at the feast of the blessed.

 

~ written by Jan L. Richardson, and posted on The Painted Prayerbook.http://paintedprayerbook.com/


The Lordship of Christ

Here’s a three-voice reading on the Lordship of Christ I put together for a service a few weeks ago.  It draws from the following scripture texts:  1 Corinthians 1:2-3, Colossians 1:15-17, 19-20; Philippians 2:6-11; 1 Corinthians 8:5-7; Romans 10:9-10; Matthew 7:21; Ephesians 4:1; Romans 14:7-9; 1 Corinthians 15:57; 1 Thessalonians 5:22-24.

 

1:         To the church of God,

to all those whom Christ Jesus has made holy,

who are called to be God’s men and women,

to all true believers in Jesus Christ—their Lord and our Lord—

grace and peace to you

from God the Father and our Lord Jesus Christ!

 

2:         Christ is the visible image of the invisible God.

He existed before anything was created

and is supreme over all creation,

for through him God created everything in heaven and on earth.

 

3:         He existed before anything else,

and he holds all creation together.

 

1:         God in all his fullness

was pleased to live in Christ,

and through him, God reconciled everything to himself,

making peace…by means of his blood on the cross.

 

3:         Though he was God,

he did not think of equality with God as something to cling to.

Instead, he gave up his divine privileges;

he took the humble position of a slave

and was born as a human being.

 

2:         When he appeared in human form,

he humbled himself in obedience to God

and died a criminal’s death on a cross.

 

1:         Therefore, God elevated him to the place of highest honor

and gave him the name above all other names,

that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow,

in heaven and on earth and under the earth,

and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord,

to the glory of God the Father.

 

2:         We know that there is only one God, the Father,

who created everything,

and we live for him.

 

3:         And there is only one Lord, Jesus Christ,

through whom God made everything

and through whom we have been given life.

 

1:         This is the message we preach:

If you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord

and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead,

you will be saved.

 

3:         For it is by believing in your heart that you are made right with God,

 

2:         and it is by confessing with your mouth that you are saved.

 

1:         Not everyone who calls out to me, ‘Lord! Lord!’

will enter the Kingdom of Heaven.

Only those who actually do the will of my Father in heaven will enter.

 

2:         I beg you,

lead a life worthy of your calling,

for you have been called by God.

 

3:         We don’t live for ourselves or die for ourselves.

If we live, it is to honor the Lord.

And if we die, it is to honor the Lord.

 

1:         So whether we live or die, we belong to the Lord.

Christ died and rose again for this very purpose—

to be Lord both of the living and of the dead.

 

2:         So, brothers and sisters,

be strong and immovable.

Stand firm.

 

3:         Always work enthusiastically for the Lord,

for you know that nothing you do for him is ever lost or wasted.

 

1:         May the God of peace make you holy in every way;

 

3:         may your whole spirit and soul and body be kept blameless

until the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ.

 

2:         He who calls you is utterly faithful,

 

1:         and he will finish what he has set out to do.

Christine Longhurst  http://re-worship.blogspot.com/search/label/Proper%2029%20A

 

 

 

What! Me, talented? (23rd Sunday after Pentecost, Year A)

fleamarketYearly Rhythm

Ordinary Time, the 23rd Sunday after Pentecost
16 November 2014, Year A, Colour: Green

The church sets aside a holy season called Ordinary Time as sacred.  The Ordinary part of the religious tradition of being ordered in our daily lives so that we can always be in the presence of the holy. (Becca Stevens)

 Daily Rhythm

Devotional Diary  10 – 16 November 2014

DOWNLOAD THE PDF HERE

Readings for the week with thanks to www.gbod.org; preparing for the 23rd Sunday after Pentecost.

Judges 4:1-7. After Ehud’s death, the Israelites again began to “do evil.” The narrator tells us this is why they fell into the hands of Jabin, a Canaanite king, The Israelites prayed for God’s help. God used Deborah, a judge, and Barak, a military leader, to free them.

Psalm 123

1 Thessalonians 5:1-11.  The Day of the Lord will come at an unexpected time. Therefore, Paul exhorts us to remain sober, faithful, and hopeful, and to continue to build up and encourage one another.

Matthew 25:14-30. Jesus uses a provocative, even offensive story in his description of the kingdom of heaven while teaching in the temple.

LEARN MORE ABOUT THE READINGS HERE

Monday:

Adoration Focus: Each day spend a few minutes in stillness before the greatness of God.

Confession: Lord we sing, “I sing for joy at the work of your hands…”  Help us to examine the work of our hands.  Does this work bring joy to you?  Lord, empower us to express your love and your values in our work.   This week bring your work to God.  Today: In my work do I express love?

The Word: Use the readings above or your own Scripture reading plan.

Seeking the Kingdom

Shared Focus: This week we pray for all those who lend helping and loving hands.  Today we pray for all doctors, nurses and health workers.

Personal prayers: (Use this section to list people you need to pray for or situations of personal concern that you need to bring before God in prayer)

             Dedication: Lord I give you my hands in service for this day that lies ahead

 Tuesday:

Adoration Focus: Each day spend a few minutes in stillness before the greatness of God.

Confession: See Monday’s confession. Today: In my work do I express care for the least of these?

The Word:

Seeking the Kingdom:

Shared Focus: This week we pray for all those who lend helping and loving hands.  Today we pray for those who are caring for infants and young children.  May their hands reach out in love and tenderness.

Personal Prayers:

             Dedication: Lord I give you my hands in service for this day that lies ahead

 Wednesday: 

Adoration Focus: Each day spend a few minutes in stillness before the greatness of God.

Confession: See Monday’s confession. Today, in my work do I express God’s guidance?

The Word:

Seeking the Kingdom:

Shared Focus: This week we pray for all those who lend helping and loving hands.  Today we pray for all those who care for the elderly.  May they see the elderly through the eyes of God.

Personal prayers:

             Dedication: Lord I give you my hands in service for this day that lies ahead

Thursday:

Adoration Focus: Each day spend a few minutes in stillness before the greatness of God.

Confession: See Monday’s confession. Today: In my work do I express God’s creativity?

The Word:

Seeking the Kingdom:

Shared Focus: This week we pray for all those who lend helping and loving hands.   Today we pray for teachers as their hands reach out to write on their black boards and share in the exploration of life.

Personal prayers:

 Dedication: Lord I give you my hands in service for this day that lies ahead

Friday:

Adoration Focus: Each day spend a few minutes in stillness before the greatness of God.

Confession: See Monday’s confession.  Today: Is my work an action of worship?

The Word:

Seeking the Kingdom:

Shared Focus: This week we pray for all those who lend helping and loving hands.  Today we pray for all those who are in love with each other.  We pray that their hands may express a deep respect and care.  Thank the Lord for his rich and varied love.

Personal prayers:

  Dedication: Lord I give you my hands in service for this day that lies ahead

 Saturday:

Adoration Focus: Each day spend a few minutes in stillness before the greatness of God.

Confession: See Monday’s confession. Today: In my work do I express the rhythms of God?

The Word:

Seeking the Kingdom:

Shared Focus: This week we pray for all those who lend helping and loving hands.  Today we pray for the hands that prepare meals to minister to the hungry.

Personal prayers:

             Dedication: Lord I give you my hands in service for this day that lies ahead

 Sunday:

Adoration Focus: Each day spend a few minutes in stillness before the greatness of God.

Confession: See Monday’s confession. Today: Can I rest from my work knowing that all depends on God’s faithfulness and not my efforts?

The Word:

Seeking the Kingdom:

Shared Focus: This week we pray for all those who lend helping and loving hands.  Today we thank God for his comforting and empowering hand that reaches into our lives.  Pray for those who have not acknowledged the hand of God that is upon them.  Pray that they may open their hearts to the hand of God.

Personal prayers:

             Dedication: Lord I give you my hands in service for this day that lies ahead

                                                                         

Weekly Rhythm

Exploring Scripture
Joining our stories with the stories of God’s people

Download the PDF here

The notes in italics are with thanks to www.gbod.org

Judges 4:1-7. After Ehud’s death, the Israelites again began to “do evil.” The narrator tells us this is why they fell into the hands of Jabin, a Canaanite king, The Israelites prayed for God’s help. God used Deborah, a judge, and Barak, a military leader, to free them.

How does God treat us when we “do evil”?
Who are modern-day Deborahs in your life?

Psalm 123

This psalm is probably written during the period when Israel were in Babylonian captivity, a very painful period of their history.  How does this psalm express hope in their situation?

1 Thessalonians 5:1-11.  The Day of the Lord will come at an unexpected time. Therefore, Paul exhorts us to remain sober, faithful, and hopeful, and to continue to build up and encourage one another.

We are not God and we do not control his coming and goings.  The day of the Lord will surprise us!
St. Paul gives the church five bits of advice:
Remember you are all children of light (not darkness.)
Keep awake and alert.
Put on God’s amour.
Keep your destiny in mind.
Encourage one another and build each other up.
See how he gives this advice in this passage and consider how it may apply to you.

Matthew 25:14-30. Jesus uses a provocative, even offensive story in his description of the kingdom of heaven while teaching in the temple.
God’s covenant people were expected to produce a harvest.  What does this parable say about God’s expectations in our lives?  How can we “produce a harvest”?

Here’s a reflection on the gospel text, the parable of the Talents.  It was written by Bruce Prewer.

Gospel Reflection

(Matthew 25:14-30)

How much wealth has the master given to my trust?
Where best can it be put to work at a profit as faith must?

How many gifts are now employed for his gain?

Where best to use each aptitude though it may bring
cost and pain?

How much time have I to spend sharing love?
Before the master comes again with expectation on his face?

—Copyright B.D. Prewer, 2001.  Posted on Bruce Prewer’s Homepage.


Praying the Lectionary Readings

Call to Worship

(based on Psalm 123)

Great and Glorious God, we gather to worship you.
We lift our eyes to you, in reverent awe before your majesty.
Great is the Lord our God, and greatly to be praised!

Generous and Merciful God, we come to worship you.
We lift our eyes to you, giving thanks for your compassion.
Gracious is the Lord our God, and greatly to be praised!

Welcoming and Empowering God, we worship you.
We lift our eyes to you, and we celebrate your faithfulness.
Holy is the Lord our God, and greatly to be praised!
We lift our eyes, seeking to worship and praise our God. Amen.

— Copyright Joan Stott.  If used in shared worship, please provide the following acknowledgement: © 2011 Joan Stott – “The Timeless Psalms” RCL Psalm Year A, used with permission.

 

Blessing

(inspired by Matthew 25: 14-20)

There are blessings meant for you
to hold onto
clutched like a lifeline
carried like a candle for a dark way

tucked into a pocket like a smooth stone
reminding you that you do not
go alone.

This blessing
is not those.

This blessing will find its form
only as you give it away
only as you release it
into the keeping of another

only as you let it
leave you

bearing the shape the imprint
the grace it will take

only for having passed through
your two particular hands.

~ written by Jan L. Richardson, and posted on The Painted Prayerbook.http://paintedprayerbook.com/


Prayer of Dedication

(inspired by Matthew 25: 14-20)

God, whose giving knows no ending,
we offer up the treasure that you have entrusted to us;
we offer up the skills and time that you have graciously given to us;
we offer up ourselves in service and praise.
Receive these gifts by your grace.
Multiply and use them through the power of the Holy Spirit
to accomplish Christ’s work of love in the world. Amen.

~ written by Joanna Harader, and posted on the Spacious Faith blog. http://spaciousfaith.com/


Prayer of Intercession

Our gracious eternal God, the ancient words of Paul echo in our souls this day. We are so much like the people of the Thessalonian Church and its culture.

We want to have glimpses of the future so that we might know that we are secure.
We want to have the security to know that tomorrow will be alright.
We want to have life all buttoned down and figured out so there will be no surprises.
We want you to rid us of all anxiety and worry and fear.
We want to know that when the great call comes for us we will be safe.
We want all darkness and all uncertainty removed from our lives.

Become alive for us again in these quiet moments. We pray that in this teachable moment you would again open to us your powerful and grace-filled presence.

Lead our spirits to find the courage to say, “All will be well because we are yours.”
Lead our spirits to find the ability to live one moment and one day at a time.
Lead our spirits to serenity and a peace which the world cannot give.
Lead our spirits to know that with your power we can cope with whatever surprises life presents to us.
Lead our spirits to know that we are destined “not for wrath” but for your redeeming.
And lead our spirits to know that “whether we wake or sleep,” living or dying, we are yours into the ages of all ages. Amen.

— Richard J Einerson, posted on Richard J. Einerson: Prayers of the People. For more of his prayers, see his book, Prayers of the People.

 

Being ready – Serving the Lord, 22nd Sunday after Pentecost, Year A

praying handsYearly Rhythm

9 November 2014
Ordinary Time, 22nd Sunday after Pentecost
Year A,  Colour: Green

The church sets aside a holy season called Ordinary Time as sacred.  The Ordinary part of the religious tradition of being ordered in our daily lives so that we can always be in the presence of the holy.

(Becca Stevens)

Daily Rhythm

Devotional Diary   3 – 9 November 2014

Bringing worship into the everyday

DOWNLOAD THE PDF HERE

Readings for this week with thanks to www.gbod.org

Joshua 24:1-3a, 14-25At the end of the conquest of Israel, Joshua exhorted the people to renew their covenant with God. The people of Israel responded by reaffirming their intent to remain faithful to God and by recalling their history with God.

Psalm 78:1-7.

1 Thessalonians 4:13-18The lectionary selection is the second part of the “meat” of this letter, addressing the church’s need for clearer teaching about eschatology. The first part deals with sexuality. Recommendation: Read the whole chapter!

Matthew 25:1-13.   Toward the conclusion of his public teaching in the temple, Jesus warns his hearers to be ready like bridesmaids who brought sufficient oil for their lamps.

Psalm 150

1 Praise the Lord/Praise God in his sanctuary;/praise him in his mighty heavens. /2 Praise him for his acts of power;
praise him for his surpassing greatness. /3 Praise him with the sounding of the trumpet, /praise him with the harp and lyre,
4 praise him with timbrel and dancing,/praise him with the strings and pipe,/5 praise him with the clash of cymbals, /praise him with resounding cymbals./6 Let everything that has breath praise the LORD. /Praise the LORD.

Monday:

Adoration Focus: Each day read through Psalm 150 (see above).  Allow the repetition of this psalm to transform you day by day. This is a call to praise God WHOLEHEARTEDLY. Lift up your heart to God in praise and as you look at the day ahead see how you can worship God in every situation.

Confession: We are called into a worship lifestyle.  Lord, this week we confess the poverty of our worship of you.  Reflect on the moments of worship you miss in life.  What makes you miss them? How can you embrace them?  Examine your everyday words and actions; do they express God’s worth in your life? Now ask God to grow you in your worship of him.  How is He calling you into deeper worship? Each day ask God to teach you how you can worship more and then put it into practice. Focus today on: the thoughts you think

The Word:  See readings above or use your own devotional aids/readings.

Seeking the Kingdom

Shared Focus: Pray for someone you love.

Personal prayers: (Use this section to list people you need to pray for or situations of personal concern that you need to bring before God in prayer)

            Dedication: Lord, in the day ahead help me to worship you in all things.  As the psalmist said, “The earth is full of the glory of the Lord!”

Tuesday:

Adoration Focus: See Monday’s praise focus.

Confession: See Monday’s confession focus. Today: Words you speak.

The Word:

Seeking the Kingdom:

Shared Focus: Pray that God may lead you to give sacrificially to meet a specific need.

Personal Prayers:

            Dedication: Lord, in the day ahead help me to worship you in all things.  As the psalmist said, “The earth is full of the glory of the Lord!”

 Wednesday: 

Adoration Focus: See Monday’s praise focus.

Confession: See Monday’s confession focus. Today: Priorities, let the main thing be the main thing.

The Word:

Seeking the Kingdom:

Shared Focus: Pray for something that is about to happen….

Personal prayers:

             Dedication: Lord, in the day ahead help me to worship you in all things.  As the psalmist said, “The earth is full of the glory of the Lord!”

 Thursday:

Adoration Focus: See Monday’s praise focus.

Confession: See Monday’s confession focus. Today: Caring actions…

The Word:

Seeking the Kingdom:

Shared Focus: Pray for someone you know who is struggling…

Personal prayers:

             Dedication: Lord, in the day ahead help me to worship you in all things.  As the psalmist said, “The earth is full of the glory of the Lord!”

 Friday:

Adoration Focus: See Monday’s praise focus.

Confession: See Monday’s confession focus.  Today: Moments to pause in worship.

The Word:

Seeking the Kingdom:

Shared Focus: Pray for someone you will meet today.

Personal prayers:

             Dedication: Lord, in the day ahead help me to worship you in all things.  As the psalmist said, “The earth is full of the glory of the Lord!”

 Saturday:

Adoration Focus: See Monday’s praise focus.

Confession: See Monday’s confession focus. Today: A heart of submission.

The Word:

Seeking the Kingdom:

Shared Focus: Pray for someone in leadership.

Personal prayers:

             Dedication: Lord, in the day ahead help me to worship you in all things.  As the psalmist said, “The earth is full of the glory of the Lord!”

 Sunday:

Adoration Focus: See Monday’s praise focus.

Confession: See Monday’s confession focus. Today: Worship with all you heart, soul, mind and strength.

The Word:

Seeking the Kingdom:

Shared Focus: Pray for someone with whom you will worship today.

Personal prayers:

             Dedication: Lord, in the day ahead help me to worship you in all things.  As the psalmist said, “The earth is full of the glory of the Lord!”

 

Weekly Rhythm

Exploring Scripture
Joining our stories with the stories of God’s people

The notes in italics are thanks to www.gbod.org.  DOWNLOAD THE PDF HERE

Joshua 24:1-3a, 14-25At the end of the conquest of Israel, Joshua exhorted the people to renew their covenant with God. The people of Israel responded by reaffirming their intent to remain faithful to God and by recalling their history with God.

The people of God had been tempted by idols.  What “idols” tempt you today?
Every day is a day of decision.  What does it mean to choose God?

Psalm 78:1-7.
A teacher of history is telling of the “dark sayings” or “hidden things” of God.  We must be informed, not forget and respond by honouring the law.
Are you informed? Do you remember? Do you honour God?

1 Thessalonians 4:13-18The lectionary selection is the second part of the “meat” of this letter, addressing the church’s need for clearer teaching about eschatology. The first part deals with sexuality. Recommendation: Read the whole chapter!

 Here we see that we can trust God.  He will leave no-one out of the glorious hope we have in Him.  The hope is that we always be with our Lord.
What does it mean to you that God will not forget you or exclude you from his hope?
You are included!  Not even death can part you from God.

Matthew 25:1-13.   Toward the conclusion of his public teaching in the temple, Jesus warns his hearers to be ready like bridesmaids who brought sufficient oil for their lamps.

We must remember as we read this parable that parables are stories that seek to make one point (as opposed to allegories where all the different details have symbolic meaning).  This parable has one message: Be ready!
Are you ready?  Remember that being ready is not waiting at the railway station for the train to arrive.  Being ready is living out our faith actively and energetically in the here and now!
How are you being urged to do this?

Praying the Lectionary Readings

 Call to Worship

(1 Thessalonians 4: 13-18, Matthew 25: 1-13, Amos 5: 18-24)

Leader:   Are you awake? Are you alert?
People:   Christ is coming into our lives in a new way.
Leader:   Are you watching the signs?

Are you interpreting what is happening today?
People:  Christ is coming into our lives in a new way.
Leader:  Do you see opportunities for ministry?

Do you see the poor, the homeless, the hungry, the needy?
People: Christ is coming into our lives in a new way.
Leader: Come, let us worship and let us work in the reign of God.
People: Christ has extended the invitation:

let us work together in the reign of God on earth.

— Rev. Mindi, on her Rev-o-lution blog.

 

Covenant Renewal Litany

Every day we journey on this earth is a day in which we make choices:
left or right, up or down, in or out, yes or no?
Some choices are simple, and some are very complex,
but one choice informs all the others:
Who will be our God?
Who will we trust to see us through this journey?

Who has been with us from before the beginning,
bringing us into existence?
Who has loved us and blessed us and sent us on our way?
Who has pointed us toward the path
and posted the signs we need to find our way?
Who has been at our side when the road has been smooth
and gently curving?
Who has kept with us through hairpin turns
and construction zones and potholes and detours?
Who will celebrate with us when we complete our course
and seek the comfort of eternity? 

Only One. The One and Only.

Holy One. The One and Holy.

Will you choose this day to stay faithful to the One who is faithful to us?

Count us in.

Will you choose this day to place your whole trust
in the One who is trustworthy?

Count us in.

Will you choose this day to commit your talents and your resources
to the One who first endowed them?

Count us in.

Will you choose this day to love the One who loved us first?

Count us in.

Praying together,

We devote ourselves to you by renewing the covenant—
the promise you made to humanity so long ago.
Because you are our God, we will be your people.
Enlarge our faithfulness, our trust, our commitment and our love
so that we may graciously uphold our side of the deal.
Help us always to recognize your presence and your blessings
throughout our journey.
Keep us in your care.
Amen.

— written by Rev. Christine Sobania Johnson on her blog, Freshly Squeezed Liturgy.  http://freshlysqueezedliturgy.blogspot.com/

 

Commission, Benediction: Proper 27A

Go now, and follow in the footsteps
of those who have gone before us in Christ.
Revere the Lord.
Serve God in sincerity and faithfulness.
Teach those who come after you to trust in God.

And may God protect you along the way;
May Christ Jesus keep you alert and prepared;
And may the Holy Spirit fuel the lamp that guides your path.

We go in peace to love and serve the Lord,
……..In the name of Christ. Amen.

©2002 Nathan Nettleton LaughingBird.net