Open your eyes, friends, and see all that is around you.
Close your eyes, friends, and see that which is inside you.
Open your ears, friends, and hear the message of love.
Close your ears, friends, and hear what you say to yourself.
Open your hearts, friends, and become vulnerable
to the one who has shown you mercy time and again.
Close your hearts, friends, when you have had enough
for today. But never forever.
You are welcomed, friends, to this day.
You are welcomed, friends, to be welcome.
We welcome the joy of our Holy God,
the grit of Jesus the Christ,
and the boundless mercy of the Holy Spirit,
We invite you to hear from the reading of Luke 10: 29-37.
29 But wanting to justify himself, he asked Jesus, “And who is my neighbor?”
30 Jesus replied, “A man was going down from Jerusalem to Jericho, and fell into
the hands of robbers, who stripped him, beat him, and went away, leaving him half dead.
31 Now by chance a priest was going down that road; and when he saw him,
he passed by on the other side. 32 So likewise a Levite, when he came
to the place and saw him, passed by on the other side.
33 But a Samaritan while traveling came near him; and when he saw him,
he was moved with pity. 34 He went to him and bandaged his wounds,
having poured oil and wine on them. Then he put him on his own animal,
brought him to an inn, and took care of him.
35 The next day he took out two denarii, gave them to the innkeeper, and said,
‘Take care of him; and when I come back, I will repay you whatever more you spend.’
36 Which of these three, do you think, was a neighbor to the man who fell
into the hands of the robbers?” 37 He said, “The one who showed him mercy.”
Jesus said to him, “Go and do likewise.”
The Word of the Lord. Thanks be to God!
The Good News of Christ. Praise be to you, O Christ!
The grass withers and the flower fades,
but the Word of the Lord endures forever. Amen.
Sermon and Reflection
Where do I sense empty love in my attempts to care for others?
How can I receive mercy in those places?
Where am I waking up to love’s invitation now?
Go now with these words:
When you are tired, may you find rest.
When you feel burdened, may you know lightness.
When you are lonely, may you be vulnerable.
Where there is need for mercy, may you be mercy.
Where there is need for love, may you be love.
Where there is need for water, may you be water.
You who have been shown mercy, may you show mercy.
Show mercy to yourself, to your neighbor, to your community.
May you be peace, hope and joy to yourself,
to your neighbor, to our community.
May you shine the love of God.
In the name of our Holy God,
Three in One,
Go in peace and live the church.
See you throughout the week.
[Photo by Warren Kirk @ Flickr]