Here’s some liturgical inspiration for this Sunday! If you have written any words for worship, feel free to share in the comments, or for future weeks email them to revgalblogpals(at)gmail.com.
Call to Worship by Sarah Agnew
As in the heavens Psalm 19
We come to worship,
to sing with the heavens,
ceaselessly singing your praise;
may our voices be heard
through all the earth,
singing praises to Holy One.
We come, grateful as the sun
for the tent in which we dwell,
shining with your splendour all day.
We come, grateful for Wisdom’s Way,
a trustworthy path leading to life,
and we sing, joyful, shine your light.
We come, into the Presence
of Perfect Love, to enter grace,
and sing, our innocence restored.
We come, and may the words of our mouths,
our hearts’ meditations, be pleasing
to You as we sing, our blessed, Holy One.
Let our lives be given us – Intercessions with Esther 7 by Sarah Agnew
We pray for women
who through the ages
have had recourse only
through their wiles,
through the stomachs of men,
the pleasure of men,
in order to be heard.
We pray for peoples
oppressed and persecuted,
life in constant threat
from empire builders,
yearning for a saviour.
We pray for leaders
inebriated to blindness
by their own power,
by position; deceived,
and their people with them.
We pray for women
who find a way
to break the silence;
for the disempowered
who find the strength
to endure, to survive, to live;
for our leaders
to find their way back
into integrity, and their
His guts wrenched Mark 9:38–50 by Sarah Agnew
Jesus looked at the little ones with them,
the starving, the hurting, the children
not old enough to count; he looked
at the healed with them, restored,
forgiven, connected; he looked, then,
at his disciples, the ones he hoped
were learning all he was teaching,
through his words, through his love:
his guts wrenched within him, his heart
beat quickened, and he could not stop
the projectiles vomiting forth –
cut it off, that hand
that causes you to stumble –
get it out, protect yourself
from that harm!
cut it off, that foot
that causes you to fall –
limp around, rather
than suffer that fate!
tear them out, your eyes,
if they cause you blurred vision –
what good are they to you,
if you are too far from God to see?
he licked at a tear rolling over his lip:
what good is salt if its saltiness
is gone? Protect your saltiness!
Be at peace together. Be at peace.
Be at peace.
And he stopped, waved them away,
and sat, searching for the salt.
For the Narrative Lectionary
Call to worship by Deborah Roof
One: God calls us away from our routine,
in order to give our attention to God’s Presence among us.
Many: Let us pay attention to God’s Presence –
for it surrounds us every day.
One: God’s Presence is in the clouds in the sky, the ground we walk on,
the wind we can only feel and earth’s creeping things that cause us to giggle.
Many: Let us worship our God of such amazing and diverse Creations!
Invocation by Deborah Roof
God of Creation, God of Isaac, God of Jacob, may your Spirit blow among us now – wherever we may be on our walk with You – and may we dream of our connection to You and know Your love and Your distinct plan for our lives. Amen.
Offertory invitation by Deborah Roof.
Throughout time and space people have considered the abundant gifts of God and offered a portion back to God’s work here. Let us consider the abundance and let us give abundantly in return. May we give according to our perception of God’s overflowing generosity.
Prayer of Dedication by Deborah Roof
Gracious, giving God, we give in response to Your abundant generosity – knowing that we can’t measure up, nor do You expect us to. You love each one of us differently and You call us to paths that fit our gifts. We ask that you bless our gifts and multiply the good that they can achieve. In Your holy name, Amen.
Jess Hainley writes, “At my congregation we are currently doing a sermon series on “If I only had. . . ” and discussing with what little we may have, what big changes God can still make in/through them. This week we’re going to be focusing on the Mustard Seed of Faith!”
The following prayers are based on that theme.
Call to Worship by Jess Hainley
One: Is God truly with us, wherever we are?
All: God is with us! We welcome God to worship as God welcomes each one of us!
One: Is God in the storms of life?
All: God is in the storms and in the days without a cloud in the sky.
One: But God isn’t with my neighbor I don’t exactly like, right?
All: God is with each person – all people are God’s beloved!
One: Does God play favorites?
All: God loves each person – yes, each one. Even those who have just a little bit of faith!
One: God, is with us – each and every one as we gather for worship today. No matter who we are, or where we are gathering from. We rejoice in God’s continued presence in each of our lives.
All: Welcome God, welcome one, welcome all to this time of worship – where you just need a little bit of faith!
Meditative Prayer (Matthew 8:23-27) By Jess Hainley
I invite you at this time to have your feet firmly planted on the ground and your hands in a prayerful pose as we enter into a time of meditative prayer.
Today as we wonder about how God is with us – let us imagine God as our shepherd as we breathe in together. Feeling God’s presence with us – wherever we are.
As we breathe in we remember our weeks – this week that we may have felt like the disciples on the ship in the middle of a storm – tossed about, scared, anxious.
God, in this moment, we hand over our anxieties to you.
[Breathing in, we feel your presence and let go of our anxieties, relaxing our bodies. Grounding ourselves in the present moment.]
We hand over the moments when we felt uneasy on our own feet.
[Our feet steadied on the ground, we feel the negative energy we are carrying with us leaving our bodies as we extend our hands to the sky, our feet, planted on the earth]
We give to you the times we were afraid and not sure how to handle what was going on.
[We extend our arms, letting go of all we carry, the burdens, the anxiety, the fear]
We name in the stillness of this moment the times we were not sure what to do.
[We lower our arms, bringing them forward, offering our fears, our anxieties, our hurt, up to You]
And as we name these things – aloud, or in the silence of this moment – we recall how you were with us in these unsteady moments.
How you helped us find our balance when we were uneasy.
[We bring our hands to center, feeling the rise and fall of our chest, the rhythmic movement of the universe, balanced in our own hearts]
The times you comforted us in our discomfort.
The moments you were present when we felt alone in the storms of life.
[Breathe in God’s presence]
As we recall Your presence, reflecting on these moments anew, we feel relaxed, at one with the world.
We breathe in, feeling the rise and fall of our chest. The rhythmic beat of our heart, rising and falling as the waves rocking the boat come and leave.
Feeling the presence of God with us in this space, let us slowly bring ourselves back to the present moment as we join together as one in our call to worship.
Prayers of the People by Jess Hainley
Let us now go to God in a time of prayer. (PAUSE)
Holy God, with just a little bit of faith You do amazing things through everyday people.
We pray today for all of Your people, God. For the folks with lots of faith, and the ones who feel they don’t even have a mustard seed of faith left.
(God, hear our prayers).
In this moment, we remember our siblings in Christ around the world who have helped us grow in our faith.
We give thanks for the journeys we have taken – big and small – to experience faith in new ways.
(God, hear our praise)
Today and everyday we remember our loved ones who have helped us grow, shaped us, cared for us, and nurtured us in our journeys of finding and sharing faith.
In the stillness of this moment, we pray for those who have journeyed and are journeying with us.
(God, hear our prayers)
And we rejoice in the lives of the ones in this community – we pray today for (INSERT PRAYER CHAIN).
(God, hear our prayers).
Gardener of life, you have planted and plucked up. You have sewn and you have harvested. Seeds have been planted in good soil, and others have fallen where they will not grow. But you, O God, You have been with us through it all, just as our seasoned saint – Mary, Marian, Mary and Jean – have as well.
We give thanks today and everyday for our seasoned saints, for the people gathered and scattered to celebrate You in this world.
For God, we just need a mustard seed of faith, a mustard seed of faith which might come as we join our voices in the prayer Your son Jesus Christ taught us, saying,
OFFERING by Jess Hainley
If a mustard seed of faith can transform someone’s life, just imagine what our offering could do for someone we are called to love. We give our offering today as a symbol of faith in the work God is doing in the world. You may share your offering online by going to the link in the description of this video or by sending your offering into the church address at __. If you are joining us in-person for worship today you may place your offering in the basket at our welcome table. Let us give thanks for the gifts which have been given, the gifts which will be given, and the gifts we share in this space with one another. God, with what little we give today – make a big change in the world. Amen.
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