This blog is a record of the call to worship, Scripture readings, and prayers from our Sunday liturgies. If you are interested in writing something for the liturgy, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Call to Worship
We have gathered to worship the Living God
Bringing our whole selves:
The good and the bad,
The broken and the mended.
We are seeking to be formed by the life and empathy of Jesus,
To learn to love God,
to love each other,
and to embrace those different from us.
Holy Spirit, who weaves every story into One,
Draw us further in
to Your redemptive work
and transform our hearts
to be like Yours
Look! the days are coming when I will plant anew the house of Israel and the house of Judah. I will repopulate the land with people and animals. Just as I watched over them in order to uproot and stamp out, to upend and destroy, and to bring disaster from the north, so now I will watch over them as I rebuild and replant them.
This is what I, the Eternal One, declare. In those coming days, people will no longer speak the proverb,
Fathers have eaten sour grapes,
and their children’s teeth are set on edge.
No, now it will be that each one will die for his own sins. If you eat sour grapes, then it is your own teeth that will be set on edge.
Look, the days are coming when I will bring about a new covenant with the people of Israel and Judah. It will not be like the covenant I made with their ancestors long ago when I took them by the hand and led them out of slavery in Egypt. They did not remain faithful to that covenant—even though I loved and cared for them as a husband. This is the kind of new covenant I will make with the people of Israel when those days are over. I will put My law within them. I will write it on their hearts. I will be their God, and they will be My people.
No longer will people have to teach each other or encourage their family members and say, “You must know the Eternal.” For all of them will know Me intimately themselves—from the least to the greatest of society. I will be merciful when they fail and forgive their wrongs. I will never call to mind or mention their sins again.
Simon’s fishing partners, James and John (two of Zebedee’s sons), along with the rest of the fishermen, see this incredible haul of fish. They’re all stunned, especially Simon. He comes close to Jesus and kneels in front of His knees.
Simon says: I can’t take this, Lord. I’m a sinful man. You shouldn’t be around the likes of me.
Jesus replies: Don’t be afraid, Simon. From now on, I’ll ask you to bring Me people instead of fish.
1 Peter 1:13-25
So get yourselves ready, prepare your minds to act, control yourselves, and look forward in hope as you focus on the grace that comes when Jesus the Anointed returns and is completely revealed to you. Be like obedient children as you put aside the desires you used to pursue when you didn’t know better. Since the One who called you is holy, be holy in all you do. For the Scripture says, “You are to be holy, for I am holy.” If you call on the Father who judges everyone without partiality according to their actions, then you should live in reverence and awe while you live out the days of your exile.
You know that a price was paid to redeem you from following the empty ways handed on to you by your ancestors; it was not paid with things that perish (like silver and gold), but with the precious blood of the Anointed, who was like a perfect and unblemished sacrificial lamb. God determined to send Him before the world began, but He came into the world in these last days for your sake. Through Him, you’ve been brought to trust in God, who raised Him from the dead and glorified Him for the very reason that your faith and hope are in Him.
Now that you have taken care to purify your souls through your submission to the truth, you can experience real love for each other. So love each other deeply from a [pure] heart. You have been reborn—not from seed that eventually dies but from seed that is eternal—through the word of God that lives and endures forever.
For as Isaiah said,
All life is like the grass,
and its glory like a flower;
The grass will wither and die,
and the flower falls,
But the word of the Lord will endure forever.
This is the word that has been preached to you.
This week's prayer was from An Iona Prayer Book, and is credited as an "Australian Aboriginal Prayer."
you have created people of many different colors,
and given us different cultures.
But in you
each has its source and fulfillment.
In Jesus Christ you have made us one,
breaking down the walls we make to protect ourselves.
By your Holy Spirit you have joined us in one body,
giving to each part its special gift.
We pray that in the church and in the world,
we may experience, more and more,
the love of your Holy Spirit,
love which honors and respects each one,
which is sensitive to our hurts and hopes,
which values the gifts we bring,
and shares its own treasures with us.
And, to you, O God, Father, Son and Holy Spirit,
be all honor and glory, now and to ages of ages.