March 20, 2016

Liturgy Reflection & Benediction 03.20.2016

Liturgy

It is relatively easy for us to roster someone
to go and gather palm leaves to spread in
the church today. And we can easily find
music and a few good words to help us to
remember and re-enact Palm Sunday.

But what if Jesus arrived
inviting us to really lay down
something important to us
to acknowledge his arrival?

What if we knew the imminence of
the danger that accompanies him,
or sensed that the authorities were
watching us as we worship?

How then, Jesus, would we meet you today?
and what would we spread before you?
And how would we regard humility from
the One we hope will save the world?

Lord Jesus, help us to see how and
where you enter our world, and what
you ask us to lay at your feet, and
how we may welcome you fully.

We ask this in the name
of the Father,
of you, the Son
and of the Holy Spirit,
Amen.

Community Confession

Lord Jesus Christ, when our words and
actions reflect a reluctance to confess
you publicly as Lord of our lives:
Forgive us, and hear our prayer.

When we fear that humbling ourselves
would be seen by others as weakness,
some kind of defect in our character:
Forgive us, and hear our prayer.

When we have betrayed your love
for us through our lack of love for
you, for others, and for ourselves:
Forgive us, and hear our prayer.

When we find ourselves glossing over
the events of your passion and death
because we look forward to Easter as
a time to enjoy holidays.
Forgive us, and hear our prayer.

Lord Jesus Christ, remake us in your
likeness; empty us of all that hinders us
from following you to where pain and
suffering, exploitation and injustice exist.

Gracious and loving God, empower us
with the Holy Spirit so that our lives
continually glorify you and our tongues
forever confess Jesus as Lord.

We pray to our God in community,
holy in One. Amen.

Where in our lives do we need to quit being the winner?
What are the things that we have been holding onto in our lives?
Where do we need to allow death in our lives in order to experience resurrection?

Benediction

This is a vision of the way it
can be, the way it should be—
Shouts of welcome, a joyful
procession, a community
celebrating together.

The same vision is offered to us today:
We can welcome Christ into our lives;
We can celebrate his transforming power.

Yet how swiftly things changed back then,
How swiftly we, too, can be distracted.
May we hold fast to his vision of goodness—

Peace from the practice of justice,
equality from the practice of respect.
As this week unfolds, may we will let
ourselves be captivated by God’s love.
May we will pour it back out into the world.

We ask all this in the name
of the Father,
of the Son
and of the Holy Spirit.
Amen.

Go in peace and live the church.
See you throughout the week.

[Photo by drsmoothdeath @ Flickr]

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