August 20, 2017

Liturgy Reflection & Benediction 08.20.2017

Liturgy

With open arms you welcome all who call on your name—
who acknowledge you as Lord, and look to you in faith.
No one stands outside the circle of your mercy and love.

We come to offer you our worship—
to declare that you are our God,
and that we are your people, called,
chosen, and loved like no other.

Through the presence of your Holy Spirit
open our eyes to see you here;
open our minds to receive your truth,
and our mouths to speak and sing your praise.

For you alone are God—
worthy of all praise and worship,
now and to the end of time.

We praise the name
of our God, the Creator,
of the Son, our Savior
and of the Holy Spirit, our Guide.
Amen

Community Confession

Merciful God, in love you created us, and in love
you sustain us, day after day. We bring our prayers
to you, asking you to hear and respond.

We pray for those of us who are estranged from
spouse or family, friends or neighbors; who find it
difficult to forgive past wrongs done to them;
Lord, in your mercy, hear our prayer.

We pray for those of us who for years have carried
feelings of guilt or regret for something they did or
something they neglected to do; who find it difficult
to ask for forgiveness or forgive themselves;
Lord, in your mercy, hear our prayer.

For those of us who find ourselves far away from you,
struggling to overcome doubts or disillusionment,
and who wonder how to find our way back;
Lord, in your mercy, hear our prayer.

For those of us watching someone they love
try to cope with serious illness or injury, and
who long for your miraculous intervention;
Lord, in your mercy, hear our prayer.

For the many in our world who are suffering this
day — from grief, or loneliness, hunger, illness,
poverty, racism, or violence;
Lord, in your mercy, hear our prayer.

Sustain all those who look to you in hope.
And strengthen us, so that we may be a light
to all those who find themselves in darkness.

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

Sermon and Reflection

Sermon Podcast 08.20.17 – Practicing Mercy

In what ways can we withhold evaluation and judgment in order to practice mercy more freely?
What might be some of our cultural blindspots that hinder our ability to practice mercy?

Benediction

This day, this step, this path:
you have set us here
so then here may we walk
at our best, to your glory.

Let storms wash our souls clean,
let fires be harnessed for warmth,
let raging rivers inspire passion not fear.

For the Lord is with us as we pass through the waters.
By God’s mercy, the river shall not overwhelm us.
Even in the reckless fires, we will not be consumed.

With your purpose given to us,
may we go forth and serve,
with the creativity of the Father,
with the mercy of the Son,
and the empathy of the Holy Spirit,
amen.

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

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

[Photo by Martin Canova @ Flickr]

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