As we approach the new year, you are each
welcomed here today to unburden from your
self-protective masks and armory.
This is a sacred space for us to let go
of that which no longer serves our souls.
As you let go of your guardedness, receive.
The eternal God seeks this morning to give an
awakening to the eternal essence within you.
May we receive and be dressed in the
qualities of this essence: compassion,
kindness, humility, courage and creativity.
And so, we worship in the name
of God, our Creator,
of Christ, the Savior,
and the Holy Spirit, our breath of life.
Prayer of Confession
Holy Vine of Life,
We ask for your sustenance
In the midst of drought—
Press us into a richness we do not know.
Terse and Tender Gardener,
Give us the toughness
To endure the pain of growth—
Prune us in our lifeless places.
Wise and Able Host,
Teach us to include,
Teach us the improvisation of welcome—
Mend our torn and broken wineskins.
God above disaster,
Show us order as you see it,
Orient us to the surprise of holy power—
Prepare us for the mess of change.
God of Creation, God of Glory,
God of Water, God of Whiskey,
God of Feasting, God of Fasting,
Come to us in our great need,
And redeem, redeem, redeem.
We ask in the name
Of our God, the Creator,
Of Christ, our Savior,
And of the Holy Spirit, our Guide.
Homily and Reflection
How might you clothe yourself with more compassion and kindness in this coming year?
What would it look like for you to practice more gratitude in the coming year?
Go now, awakened to the voice of God
who speaks in their Word and their world.
As you leave this place, be listening
amid the noise of your everyday life.
Be persistent, for the One whom you
follow lives, their teachings and their
promises are alive and at work.
Do not get discouraged.
for moments of receiving, finding,
and opening will come.
Christ Jesus is with us.
Find life through him, with his words
written upon your heart, always there.
Go into this new year,
serving in the name
of our Creator,
of the Savior,
and of the Holy Spirit.
Go in peace, and live the church.
May you find community and belonging this week.
Happy new year!
[Photo by Dayne Topkin]