epiphany

Liturgy 3-3-2019

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, or if you have a concern about any aspect of our liturgy, please email jamie@ubcwaco.org.

Call to Worship

we have gathered to worship the Eternal One

to direct our attention toward
the Creator and Sustainer of all
,

offering our songs, our prayers,
our silence, and our listening

that the Spirit of God might illuminate our ordinary lives,
renewing our hearts and minds
and shaping our imaginations

that, as a Body held together in the Word-made-flesh,

we might carry the light
of the love
of the Living God
together

Amen

Scripture

Psalm 99

The Lord is king; let the peoples tremble!
   the Lord sits enthroned upon the cherubim; let the earth quake!
The Lord is great in Zion;
   the Lord is exalted over all the peoples.
Let them praise your great and awesome name.
   Holy is the Lord!

Mighty King, lover of justice,
   you have established equity;
you have executed justice
   and righteousness in Jacob.
Extol the Lord our God;
   worship at the Lord’s footstool.
   Holy is the Lord!

Moses and Aaron were among the Lord’s priests,
   Samuel also was among those who called on the name of the Lord.
   They cried to the Lord, and the Lord answered them.

The Lord spoke to them in the pillar of cloud;
   they kept the Lord’s decrees,
   and the statutes that the Lord gave them.

O Lord our God, you answered them;
   you were a forgiving God to them,
   but an avenger of their wrongdoings.
Extol the Lord our God,
   and worship at the Lord’s holy mountain;
   for the Lord our God is holy.


1 Corinthians 15:50-58

What I am saying, brothers and sisters, is this: flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God, nor does the perishable inherit the imperishable. Listen, I will tell you a mystery! We will not all die, but we will all be changed, in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet.

For the trumpet will sound, and the dead will be raised imperishable, and we will be changed. For this perishable body must put on imperishability, and this mortal body must put on immortality.

When this perishable body puts on imperishability, and this mortal body puts on immortality, then the saying that is written will be fulfilled:

“Death has been swallowed up in victory.”
“Where, O death, is your victory?
   Where, O death, is your sting?”

The sting of death is sin, and the power of sin is the law. But thanks be to God, who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.

Therefore, my beloved, be steadfast, immovable, always excelling in the work of the Lord, because you know that in the Lord your labor is not in vain.

Luke 9:28-36

Jesus took with him Peter and John and James, and went up on the mountain to pray. And while he was praying, the appearance of his face changed, and his clothes became dazzling white. Suddenly they saw two men, Moses and Elijah, talking to him.

They appeared in glory and were speaking of his departure, which he was about to accomplish at Jerusalem. Now Peter and his companions were weighed down with sleep; but since they had stayed awake, they saw his glory and the two men who stood with him. Just as they were leaving him, Peter said to Jesus, "Master, it is good for us to be here; let us make three dwellings, one for you, one for Moses, and one for Elijah"--not knowing what he said.

While he was saying this, a cloud came and overshadowed them; and they were terrified as they entered the cloud. Then from the cloud came a voice that said, "This is my Son, my Chosen; listen to him!" When the voice had spoken, Jesus was found alone. And they kept silent and in those days told no one any of the things they had seen.

Prayer

This week’s prayer was from Christine Jerrett:

We wait for you, God of truth and freedom.
We wait for you, Holy Spirit.
We wait for you, Lord Jesus, full of the glory of God.

God of goodness and grace,
you summon us into a world
made large by your expansive, creative salvation.
Open our eyes and ears and hearts
to your unexpected presence in our lives.

You know the ways we wander from your love and your truth:
the fears that drive us to make our world small and manageable;
the selfishness that shuts down our hearts;
the arrogance that limits our reach towards the ones you love.

Immerse us again and again
in your lavish grace.
Bathe us once more in the
cleansing stream of your truth.
Send your Spirit flowing through the
dried-up, worn out places.
Bring life — your life,
your wondrous, abundant life,
for we pray in the name of Jesus,
the Way, the Truth, the Life,
your Word made flesh,
your love that transfigures our world.
Amen.

Setlist 3-3-2019

Yesterday was the final Sunday of Epiphany, also known as Transfiguration Sunday, and our songs were gathered with this in mind.  Below, you’ll find the list of the songs and artists. Clicking the song titles will take you to the lyrics.  Below the songs, you can find a brief example of one way you might think of these songs. If you want to talk about any of these, feel free to comment at the bottom of this page or email me at jamie@ubcwaco.org.

Songs:

The Transfiguration by Sufjan Stevens

Pulse by ubcmusic

The Word Is Yet Flesh by Jameson McGregor

Trusty and True by Damien Rice

Wayward Ones by The Gladsome Light

Doxology

How They Fit In:

There are many ways to think about the significance of songs and the way they fit together–-this is simply one way you can look at these songs in light of this week’s theme. 

The Transfiguration: We sang this song to enter into the story of the Transfiguration.

Pulse: This song offered us language to petition God to reconnect our hearts to our interconnectivity with all of creation.

The Word Is Yet Flesh: This song is a petition to the One in whom all things hold together to hold us together and breathe the Spirit of life anew into our collective body.

Trusty and True: This is a song about reconciliation.

Wayward Ones:  This is our communion hymn, and it contemplates Christ's self-giving love that is displayed and remembered in the eucharist.

Doxology: We close our time together each week with this proclamation that God is worthy of praise from every inch of the cosmos. 

-JM

Liturgy 2-24-2019

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, or if you have a concern about any aspect of our liturgy, please email jamie@ubcwaco.org.

Call to Worship

we have gathered to worship the Living God

to offer our songs, our prayers, our attention, and our listening
to the One in whom all things hold together

to enter the story of God and the people of God

and find our own stories there

and to find our hearts and minds transformed by the Spirit of God

that we might learn to love, to live, and to die,
carrying the Light of Christ in our ordinary lives

Amen

Scripture

Psalm 37:1-12, 41-42

Do not fret yourself because of evildoers;
do not be jealous of those who do wrong.
For they shall soon wither like the grass,
and like the green grass fade away.

Put your trust in the Lord and do good;
dwell in the land and feed on its riches.
Take delight in the Lord,
and he shall give you your heart's desire.

Commit your way to the Lord and put your trust in him,
and he will bring it to pass.
He will make your righteousness as clear as the light
and your just dealing as the noonday.

Be still before the Lord
and wait patiently for him.
Do not fret yourself over the one who prospers,
the one who succeeds in evil schemes.

Refrain from anger, leave rage alone;
do not fret yourself; it leads only to evil.
For evildoers shall be cut off,
but those who wait upon the Lord shall possess the land.

In a little while the wicked shall be no more;
you shall search out their place, but they will not be there.
But the lowly shall possess the land;
they will delight in abundance of peace.

But the deliverance of the righteous comes from the Lord;
he is their stronghold in time of trouble.
The Lord will help them and rescue them;
he will rescue them from the wicked and deliver them,
because they seek refuge in him.

Luke 6:27-38

If you’re listening, here’s My message: Keep loving your enemies no matter what they do. Keep doing good to those who hate you. Keep speaking blessings on those who curse you. Keep praying for those who mistreat you. If someone strikes you on one cheek, offer the other cheek too. If someone steals your coat, offer him your shirt too. If someone begs from you, give to him. If someone robs you of your valuables, don’t demand them back. Think of the kindness you wish others would show you; do the same for them.

Listen, what’s the big deal if you love people who already love you? Even scoundrels do that much! So what if you do good to those who do good to you? Even scoundrels do that much! So what if you lend to people who are likely to repay you? Even scoundrels lend to scoundrels if they think they’ll be fully repaid.

If you want to be extraordinary—love your enemies! Do good without restraint! Lend with abandon! Don’t expect anything in return! Then you’ll receive the truly great reward—you will be children of the Most High—for God is kind to the ungrateful and those who are wicked. So imitate God and be truly compassionate, the way your Father is.

If you don’t want to be judged, don’t judge. If you don’t want to be condemned, don’t condemn. If you want to be forgiven, forgive. Don’t hold back—give freely, and you’ll have plenty poured back into your lap—a good measure, pressed down, shaken together, brimming over. You’ll receive in the same measure you give.

Philippians 1:21

For to me, living is Christ and dying is gain.

Setlist 2-24-2019

Yesterday was the eighth Sunday of Epiphany, and our songs were gathered with this in mind.  Below, you’ll find the list of the songs and artists. Clicking the song titles will take you to the lyrics.  Below the songs, you can find a brief example of one way you might think of these songs. If you want to talk about any of these, feel free to comment at the bottom of this page or email me at jamie@ubcwaco.org.

Songs:

How Great Thou Art

Crown Him With Many Crowns by ubcmusic (adapted from Matthew Bridges)

SMS [Shine] by David Crowder* Band

When the Saints

There by Jameson McGregor

Doxology

How They Fit In:

There are many ways to think about the significance of songs and the way they fit together–-this is simply one way you can look at these songs in light of this week’s theme. 

How Great Thou Art: We sang this song to begin our time together giving voice to the greatness of God’s activity in history.

Crown Him With Many Crowns: This song offered us language to speak of Christ’s greatness being rooted in his coming low and suffering among us.

SMS [Shine]: This song is a petition for Christ to continue to be the light in the darkness the darkness did not overcome, and to make us bearers of this light.

When the Saints: We sang this song to tie ourselves to those who have gone before us, and to locate our stories within a great parade of stories God is weaving together into redemption.

There: We sang this song to look over our shoulder at last week’s songs. This is what we said about There then: This song celebrates God as an anchor beyond every pain we encounter.

Doxology: We close our time together each week with this proclamation that God is worthy of praise from every inch of the cosmos. 

-JM

Liturgy 2-17-2019

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, or if you have a concern about any aspect of our liturgy, please email jamie@ubcwaco.org.

Call to Worship

we have gathered to worship
the Creator and Sustainer

to direct our attention
toward the One in whom we live
and move and have our being

to find comfort for the afflicted
in the Story of God and the people of God

and to find our stories formed
in the way of Christ

so, may the Spirit of God carve the love of God into our hearts,

and may we learn to embody
the Kingdom of the Living God
in our ordinary lives

amen.

Scripture

Genesis 48:1-20

Soon after this, Joseph was brought word that his father was gravely ill; so he took his two sons, Manasseh and Ephraim, to see Jacob. When Jacob was told that his son Joseph had come to see him, he gathered his strength and sat up in bed.

Jacob (to Joseph): The All-Powerful God appeared to me at Luz in the land of Canaan many years ago and spoke His blessing over me, telling me, “I am going to make you fruitful and multiply your descendants so that you will give rise to nation after nation. I will give this land to them after you to have as their possession forever.”

So Joseph, your two sons who were born to you in Egypt before I came here are mine. I claim Ephraim and Manasseh as my own, just as Reuben and Simeon are mine. As for any children you father after them, you may regard them as your own. When it comes time for your other children to gain their inheritances, they will be given land within the regions granted to their brothers, Ephraim and Manasseh.

When I left Paddan, your mother Rachel died on our journey in the land of Canaan. We were not far from Ephrath, so I buried her there on the way to Ephrath (which is also known as Bethlehem).

Just then Israel noticed Joseph’s sons.

Jacob: And who are these?

Joseph: These are my sons, Father, whom God has given to me here in Egypt.

Jacob: Please bring them here to me, so I can lay my hands on them and bless them.

Israel’s eyes were dim because of his old age, so he couldn’t see well. Joseph brought the boys near to him, and Israel kissed them and hugged them warmly.

Jacob (to Joseph): I didn’t know if I would ever see your face again, but now God has given me more than I hoped: He has let me see your children too.

Then Joseph moved the boys aside—they had been at his father’s knees—and he bowed down low with his face to the ground. Then Joseph took his sons and brought them near to his father. He took his younger son Ephraim in his right hand and put him to the left hand of Israel, and he took Manasseh in his left hand and put him to the right hand of Israel. But Israel stretched out his hands and crossed his arms, laying his right hand on the head of Ephraim, the younger, and his left hand on the head of Manasseh, the firstborn. And he spoke this blessing over Joseph.

Jacob: May the God before whom my ancestors Abraham and Isaac walked,
       the God who has been my shepherd all of my life and still to this day,
   The messenger who has rescued me from all harm,
       bless these boys.
   And let my name be perpetuated through them,
       as well as the name of my ancestors Abraham and Isaac,
   And let them grow into a great multitude of people
       throughout the world.

When Joseph saw that his father had laid his right hand on Ephraim’s head, he was troubled, and so he took his father’s hand to move it from Ephraim’s head to Manasseh’s.

Joseph: No, Father! Since this one is the firstborn, put your right hand on his head.

But Israel refused.

Jacob: I know, my son, I know. Manasseh will also become a people, and he will be great. Nevertheless, his younger brother will be greater than he, and his children will give rise to many nations.

So it was that Israel blessed Joseph and his sons that day.

Jacob: When the people of Israel speak blessings, they’ll remember you: “May God make you like Ephraim and Manasseh.”

So this is how Israel ranked Ephraim ahead of Manasseh.

Luke 6:17-26

Jesus came down with the twelve apostles and stood on a level place, with a great crowd of his disciples and a great multitude of people from all Judea, Jerusalem, and the coast of Tyre and Sidon. They had come to hear him and to be healed of their diseases; and those who were troubled with unclean spirits were cured. And all in the crowd were trying to touch him, for power came out from him and healed all of them.

Then he looked up at his disciples and said:

“Blessed are you who are poor,
for yours is the kingdom of God.

“Blessed are you who are hungry now,
for you will be filled.

“Blessed are you who weep now,
for you will laugh.

“Blessed are you when people hate you, and when they exclude you, revile you, and defame you on account of the Son of Man. Rejoice in that day and leap for joy, for surely your reward is great in heaven; for that is what their ancestors did to the prophets."

"But woe to you who are rich,
for you have received your consolation.

"Woe to you who are full now,
for you will be hungry.

"Woe to you who are laughing now,
for you will mourn and weep.

"Woe to you when all speak well of you, for that is what their ancestors did to the false prophets."





Setlist 2-17-2019

Yesterday was the seventh Sunday of Epiphany, and our songs were gathered with this in mind.  Below, you’ll find the list of the songs and artists. Clicking the song titles will take you to the lyrics.  Below the songs, you can find a brief example of one way you might think of these songs. If you want to talk about any of these, feel free to comment at the bottom of this page or email me at jamie@ubcwaco.org.

Songs:

Just A Closer Walk With Thee

There by Jameson McGregor

Where God Has Always Been by Jameson McGregor

Heart With No Companion by Leonard Cohen

Mystery by ubcmusic (adapted from Charlie Hall)

Doxology

How They Fit In:

There are many ways to think about the significance of songs and the way they fit together–-this is simply one way you can look at these songs in light of this week’s theme. 

Just A Closer Walk With Thee: We sang this song to express our desire to be formed more fully in the way of Christ.

There: This song celebrates God as an anchor beyond every pain we encounter.

Where God Has Always Been: We sang this song to acknowledge and celebrate God’s solidarity with those with their backs against the wall, and to look ahead to the coming of the Kingdom in fullness.

Heart With No Companion: This song is about the hope of Christ that reaches across pain and time, drawing us into a future of wholeness.

Mystery: This song invites us to consider the death, resurrection, and enduring presence of Jesus as being transformative to the way we navigate our ordinary lives.

Doxology: We close our time together each week with this proclamation that God is worthy of praise from every inch of the cosmos. 

-JM

Liturgy 2-3-2019

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, or if you have a concern about any aspect of our liturgy, please email jamie@ubcwaco.org.

Call to Worship

we have gathered to worship
the Creator and Sustainer of all that is

to seek refuge in the rock of the Eternal

to enter into the story of God
and the people of God

that our own stories might be transformed

as we are drawn together by the Spirit of God

into the peace of Christ,
grafted into the Body
of resurrection hope

amen

Scripture

Psalm 71:1-6

In you, O Lord, I take refuge;
   let me never be put to shame.
In your righteousness deliver me and rescue me;
   incline your ear to me and save me.
Be to me a rock of refuge,
   a strong fortress, to save me,
   for you are my rock and my fortress.
Rescue me, O my God, from the hand of the wicked,
   from the grasp of the unjust and cruel.
For you, O Lord, are my hope,
   my trust, O Lord, from my youth.
Upon you I have leaned from my birth;
   it was you who took me from my mother’s womb.
My praise is continually of you.

Ephesians 2:13-22

But now in Christ Jesus you who once were far off have been brought near by the blood of Christ. For he is our peace; in his flesh he has made both groups into one and has broken down the dividing wall, that is, the hostility between us.

He has abolished the law with its commandments and ordinances, that he might create in himself one new humanity in place of the two, thus making peace, and might reconcile both groups to God in one body through the cross, thus putting to death that hostility through it. So he came and proclaimed peace to you who were far off and peace to those who were near; for through him both of us have access in one Spirit to the Father.

So then you are no longer strangers and aliens, but you are citizens with the saints and also members of the household of God, built upon the foundation of the apostles and prophets, with Christ Jesus himself as the cornerstone. In him the whole structure is joined together and grows into a holy temple in the Lord; in whom you also are built together spiritually into a dwelling place for God.

Prayer

This week's prayer was from W. E. B. Du Bois:

Give us grace, O God, to dare to do the deed which we well know
cries to be done. Let us not hesitate because of ease, or the
words of men’s mouths, or our own lives. Mighty causes are
calling us—the freeing of women, the training of children, the
putting down of hate and murder and poverty—all these and
more. But they call with voices that mean work and sacrifices
and death. Mercifully grant us, O God, the spirit of Esther, that
we say: I will go unto the King and if I perish, I perish.

Amen.

Setlist 2-3-2018

Yesterday was the fifth Sunday of Epiphany, and our songs were gathered with this in mind.  Below, you’ll find the list of the songs and artists. Clicking the song titles will take you to the lyrics.  Below the songs, you can find a brief example of one way you might think of these songs. If you want to talk about any of these, feel free to comment at the bottom of this page or email me at jamie@ubcwaco.org.

Songs:

All Creatures of Our God and King by David Crowder* Band

Wayward Ones by The Gladsome Light

Rise Up by BiFrost Arts

Family Band by Jameson McGregor

Wideness by ubcmusic (adapted from F. Faber)

Doxology

How They Fit In:

There are many ways to think about the significance of songs and the way they fit together–-this is simply one way you can look at these songs in light of this week’s theme. 

All Creatures of Our God and King: This song invites us to join our voices with the rest of creation in celebrating the Creator and Sustainer of all that is.

Wayward Ones: This is our communion hymn, and it contemplates Christ's self-giving love that is displayed and remembered in the eucharist.

Rise Up: This song is a petition for God to come to the aid and defense of people who are trampled by our systems of power.

Family Band: This song is a plea for God to draw our withered selves into God’s family.

Wideness: We sang this song to continue to remind ourselves on our Epiphany journey that our most grandiose views of God’s mercy and love are in fact minimizations.

Doxology: We close our time together each week with this proclamation that God is worthy of praise from every inch of the cosmos. 

-JM

Liturgy 1-13-2019

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, or if you have a concern about any aspect of our liturgy, please email jamie@ubcwaco.org.

Call to Worship

we have gathered to worship the Living God

the One who was, who is, and is to come,
revealed in the Word who became flesh
and dwelt among us

with our attention, our songs,
our prayers, and our listening

that we might be formed in the way of Christ,
the One in whom all things hold together

hoping that this same one might hold us together

in the great mosaic family of God

Amen

Scripture

Isaiah 43:1-7

Thus says the Lord,
he who created you, O Jacob,
he who formed you, O Israel:
Do not fear, for I have redeemed you;
I have called you by name, you are mine.

When you pass through the waters, I will be with you;
and through the rivers, they shall not overwhelm you;
when you walk through fire you shall not be burned,
and the flame shall not consume you.

For I am the Lord your God,
the Holy One of Israel, your Savior.
I give Egypt as your ransom,
Ethiopia and Seba in exchange for you.

Because you are precious in my sight,
and honored, and I love you,
I give people in return for you,
nations in exchange for your life.

Do not fear, for I am with you;
I will bring your offspring from the east,
and from the west I will gather you;
I will say to the north, "Give them up,"
and to the south, "Do not withhold;
bring my sons from far away
and my daughters from the end of the earth—
everyone who is called by my name,
whom I created for my glory,
whom I formed and made."

Colossians 1:15-19

He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of all creation; for in him all things in heaven and on earth were created, things visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or powers—all things have been created through him and for him.

He himself is before all things, and in him all things hold together. He is the head of the body, the church; he is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead, so that he might come to have first place in everything.

For in him all the fullness of God was pleased to dwell, and through him God was pleased to reconcile to himself all things, whether on earth or in heaven, by making peace through the blood of his cross.

Prayer

This week's prayer was from An Iona Prayer Book, and is credited as an "Australian Aboriginal Prayer."

Rainbow God,
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.

Amen

 

Setlist 1-13-2019

Yesterday was the second Sunday of Epiphany, and the beginning of an important conversation in the life of our church.  Our songs were gathered with this in mind.  Below, you’ll find the list of the songs and artists. Clicking the song titles will take you to the lyrics.  Below the songs, you can find a brief example of one way you might think of these songs. If you want to talk about any of these, feel free to comment at the bottom of this page or email me at jamie@ubcwaco.org.

Songs:

Wild One by Jameson McGregor

All Creatures of Our God and King by David Crowder* Band

Fall Afresh by Jeremy Riddle

The Word Is Yet Flesh by Jameson McGregor

Wayward Ones by The Gladsome Light

Pulse by ubcmusic

Doxology

How They Fit In:

There are many ways to think about the significance of songs and the way they fit together–-this is simply one way you can look at these songs in light of this week’s theme. 

Wild One: We sang this song to begin our time together to focus our attention on the God who is greater than our most polished theological systems can account for.

All Creatures of Our God and King: This song invites us to contemplate our familial relationship and unity with all of creation.

Fall Afresh: We sang this song to invite the Spirit to refresh the dry places within us and to reinvigorate our being formed in the way of Christ.

The Word Is Yet Flesh: This song is a plea for the One in whom all things hold together to hold together the fractured body of Christ.

Wayward Ones: This is our communion hymn, and it contemplates Christ's self-giving love that is displayed and remembered in the eucharist.

Pulse: We sang this song to petition the Spirit to reawaken us to our interconnectivity and to teach us to love one another as Christ loved us.

Doxology: We close our time together each week with this proclamation that God is worthy of praise from every inch of the cosmos. 

-JM

Liturgy 1-7-2019

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, or if you have a concern about any aspect of our liturgy, please email jamie@ubcwaco.org.

Call to Worship

we have gathered to direct our attention to the Light of the World

to orient our hearts and minds
toward the Word-made-flesh

that in our singing, our praying,
our silence, and our listening

we might be caught up in the Story of God

and be formed more fully in the way of Christ

bearing the radiant love of God in our ordinary lives

amen

Scripture

Isaiah 60:1-6

Arise, shine; for your light has come,
and the glory of the Lord has risen upon you.
For darkness shall cover the earth,
and thick darkness the peoples;

but the Lord will arise upon you,
and his glory will appear over you.
Nations shall come to your light,
and kings to the brightness of your dawn.

Lift up your eyes and look around;
they all gather together, they come to you;
your sons shall come from far away,
and your daughters shall be carried on their nurses' arms.

Then you shall see and be radiant;
your heart shall thrill and rejoice,
because the abundance of the sea shall be brought to you,
the wealth of the nations shall come to you.

A multitude of camels shall cover you,
the young camels of Midian and Ephah;
all those from Sheba shall come.

They shall bring gold and frankincense,
and shall proclaim the praise of the Lord.

Matthew 2:1-12

In the time of King Herod, after Jesus was born in Bethlehem of Judea, wise men from the East came to Jerusalem, asking, "Where is the child who has been born king of the Jews? For we observed his star at its rising, and have come to pay him homage."

When King Herod heard this, he was frightened, and all Jerusalem with him; and calling together all the chief priests and scribes of the people, he inquired of them where the Messiah was to be born.

They told him, "In Bethlehem of Judea; for so it has been written by the prophet:

`And you, Bethlehem, in the land of Judah,
are by no means least among the rulers of Judah;
for from you shall come a ruler
who is to shepherd my people Israel.'"

Then Herod secretly called for the wise men and learned from them the exact time when the star had appeared. Then he sent them to Bethlehem, saying, "Go and search diligently for the child; and when you have found him, bring me word so that I may also go and pay him homage." When they had heard the king, they set out; and there, ahead of them, went the star that they had seen at its rising, until it stopped over the place where the child was.

When they saw that the star had stopped, they were overwhelmed with joy. On entering the house, they saw the child with Mary his mother; and they knelt down and paid him homage. Then, opening their treasure chests, they offered him gifts of gold, frankincense, and myrrh.

And having been warned in a dream not to return to Herod, they left for their own country by another road.

Prayer

This Sunday’s prayer was from Thandiwe Dale-Ferguson:

Quietly the New Year slips in.
Are we now more fearful, the radio asks?
More careful?
More tired?
Are we now more aware of the suffering, the violence,
the inequality, the injustice in our world?

Holy God,
In this New Year,
We seek you
As we have always sought you.
We need you
As we have always needed you.
We hunger for your presence, your peace, your justice and your love.

Open our hearts afresh and anew.
Open our minds that we may know you.
Open our hands that we may care for you.
Open our ears and eyes that we may hear and see you
In our neighbor, in the foreigner, in the refugee,
Even in our enemy,
And, perhaps especially, in ourselves.

That we may know in the deepest part of ourselves
That you call us
And that we are capable
Of seeing and naming, doing and being
Your love, your peace, your hope and your justice
In this your world.

Amen.

 

Liturgy 2-11-2018

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, or if you have a concern about any aspect of our liturgy, please email jamie@ubcwaco.org.

Call to Worship

we have gathered to devote our attention to the Lord of all

to worship the God
revealed in Jesus Christ

to embrace what God would have us know
about who God is

and what God would have us know
about who we are

that we might be drawn into God’s story

and join with God in the work
of new life in the world.

Amen.

 

 

 

Scripture

Psalm 50:1-6

The Lord, the God of gods, has spoken;
and has called the earth from the rising of the sun to its setting.

Out of Zion, perfect in its beauty,
God reveals Godself in glory.

Our God will come and will not keep silence;
before God there is a consuming flame,
and round about God a raging storm.

God calls the heavens and the earth from above
to witness the judgment of God’s people.

"Gather before me my loyal followers,
those who have made a covenant with me
and sealed it with sacrifice."

Let the heavens declare the rightness of God’s cause;
for God is judge.

Mark 9:2-9

Jesus took with him Peter and James and John, and led them up a high mountain apart, by themselves. And he was transfigured before them, and his clothes became dazzling white, such as no one on earth could bleach them.

And there appeared to them Elijah with Moses, who were talking with Jesus. Then Peter said to Jesus, “Rabbi, it is good for us to be here; let us make three dwellings, one for you, one for Moses, and one for Elijah.”

He did not know what to say, for they were terrified. Then a cloud overshadowed them, and from the cloud there came a voice, “This is my Son, the Beloved; listen to him!” Suddenly when they looked around, they saw no one with them any more, but only Jesus.

As they were coming down the mountain, he ordered them to tell no one about what they had seen, until after the Son of Man had risen from the dead.

Poem

truth
by gwendolyn brooks

And if sun comes
How shall we greet him?
Shall we not dread him,
Shall we not fear him
After so lengthy a
Session with shade?

Though we have wept for him,
Though we have prayed
All through the night-years—
What if we wake one shimmering morning to
Hear the fierce hammering
Of his firm knuckles
Hard on the door?

Shall we not shudder?—
Shall we not flee
Into the shelter, the dear thick shelter
Of the familiar
Propitious haze?

Sweet is it, sweet is it
To sleep in the coolness
Of snug unawareness.

The dark hangs heavily
Over the eyes.

Prayer

This week's prayer was written by W. E. B. Du Bois:

In these first beginnings of new life in the world, renew in us the resolution to persist in the good work we have begun.  Give us strength of body and strength of mind and the unfaltering determination to carry out that which we know to be good and right.  

Forgive all wavering in the past service of Thy cause and make us strong to go forward in spite of our own distrust in ourselves. 

Out of the death of winter comes ever and again the resurrection of spring: so out of evil bring good, O God, and out of doubt determination. Amen.

Liturgy 2-4-2018

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, or if you have a concern about any aspect of our liturgy, please email jamie@ubcwaco.org.

Call to Worship

we have gathered to devote our attention
to the Living God

to be formed more fully in the way of Christ

who, on the night he was betrayed,
took bread, blessed it, and said

this is my body which is for you
do this in remembrance of me

in the same way, he took the cup also after supper, saying

this cup is the new covenant in my blood
do this, as often as you drink it, in remembrance of me

for as often as we eat this bread and drink this cup

we proclaim the Lord’s death until he comes

Amen.

Scripture