PRELUDE Eternal Father, Strong To Save – Whiting / Dykes
*CALL TO WORSHIP (adapted from Psalm 98)
Leader: With hearts full of joy, let us give thanks for God’s steadfast love and faithfulness!
People: Let us sing to the LORD a new song!
Leader: With songs and celebration, let us share with God our thanks and praise!
People: Let us honor the LORD with the sound of melody!
Leader: With a joyful noise, let us worship God!
People: Let us praise the One who judges the world with righteousness and equity.
*HYMN OF PRAISE Immortal, Invisible, God Only Wise #263
Immortal, invisible, God only wise,
In light inaccessible hid from our eyes,
Most blessèd, most glorious, the Ancient of Days,
Almighty, victorious, Thy great name we praise.
Unresting, unhasting, and silent as light,
Nor wanting, nor wasting, Thou rulest in might;
Thy justice, like mountains, high soaring above
Thy clouds, which are fountains of goodness and love.
To all, life Thou givest, to both great and small;
In all life Thou livest, the true life of all;
We blossom and flourish like leaves on the tree,
Then wither and perish; but naught changeth Thee.
Thou reignest in glory, Thou rulest in light,
Thine angels adore Thee, all veiling their sight;
All praise we would render; O help us to see
‘Tis only the splendor of light hideth Thee!
PRAYERS OF CONFESSION (Unison)
Merciful God, when we compare ourselves to the wider community,
we recognize that we have not done so badly.
Not only have we tried to serve You through the church,
but we have also attempted to forgive those who have sinned against us.
Yet deep within our hearts, we know that we have failed to reach the standard of
love set by Jesus.
We have compromised our faith, and we have been indifferent to our fellow
human beings around us.
Our lack of commitment has diverted us from Your path, and our prejudices have
hindered us from sharing Your love with all people.
Forgive us, Lord, and cleanse of our sin.
Transform us through Your life-renewing Spirit,
so that You would abide in us,
and our lives would bear witness to Your steadfast love and faithfulness revealed
in Jesus Christ our Lord, in whose name we pray.
ASSURANCE OF FORGIVENESS (adapted from 2 Corinthians 5:17-18)
Leader: If anyone is in Christ, there is a new creation. Everything old has passed away,
and all things have become new!
People: All this is from God, to whom we have been reconciled through Christ, and God has
now given us the ministry of reconciliation.
Leader: Friends, believe the good news of the gospel:
People: Through the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus Christ, we are forgiven!
SCRIPTURE Jeremiah 1:4-10
4 Now the word of the Lord came to me saying, 5 “Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, and before you were born I consecrated you; I appointed you a prophet to the nations.”
6 Then I said, “Ah, Lord God! Truly I do not know how to speak, for I am only a boy.”
7 But the Lord said to me, “Do not say, ‘I am only a boy’; for you shall go to all to whom
I send you, and you shall speak whatever I command you. 8 Do not be afraid of them, for I am with you to deliver you, says the Lord.”
9 Then the Lord put out his hand and touched my mouth; and the Lord said to me, “Now I have put my words in your mouth. 10 See, today I appoint you over nations and over kingdoms, to pluck up and to pull down, to destroy and to overthrow, to build and to plant.”
SCRIPTURE 1 John 5:1-5
1 Everyone who believes that Jesus is the Christ has been born of God, and everyone who loves the parent loves the child. 2 By this we know that we love the children of God, when we love God and obey his commandments. 3 For the love of God is this, that we obey his commandments. And his commandments are not burdensome, 4 for whatever is born of God conquers the world. And this is the victory that conquers the world, our faith. 5 Who is it that conquers the world but the one who believes that Jesus is the Son of God?
MEDITATION Superheroes and the Savior
ANTHEM Fiona Coughlin
*AFFIRMATION OF FAITH from A Declaration of Faith, 9.5
We believe Christ gives us and demands of us lives in pilgrimage toward God’s kingdom.
Like Christ we may enjoy on our journey all that sustains life and makes it pleasant and
No more than Christ are we spared the darkness, ambiguity, and threat of life in the world.
We are in the world, but not of the world.
Our confidence and hope for ourselves and other people
do not rest in the powers and achievements of this world,
but in the coming and hidden presence of God’s kingdom.
Christ calls each of us to a life appropriate to that kingdom —
to serve as he has served us;
to take up our cross, risking the consequences of faithful discipleship;
to walk by faith, not by sight;
and to hope for what we have not seen.
PRAYERS OF THE PEOPLE AND AN ALTERNATE FORM OF THE LORD’S PRAYER
. . . Eternal Spirit, Source of all that is and ever shall be,
Loving Parent in whom we discern heaven,
May knowledge of Your holiness inspire all peoples,
And may Your commonwealth of peace and freedom flourish on earth
Until all of humankind heed Your call to justice and compassion.
May we find the bread that we need for today,
And for the hurts we cause one another,
May we be forgiven in the same measure that we forgive.
In times of trial and temptation, help us to be strong;
When life seems overwhelming, help us to endure;
And thus from the yoke of sin deliver us.
May You reign in the power of human love, now and forever. Amen.
– adapted from the prayer book of the Anglican Church of New Zealand
INVITATION TO GIVE
PRAYER OF DEDICATION (Unison)
Holy and loving Lord, take these gifts, and use them for Your purposes . . .
take these resources, and use them for Your work . . .
and take our lives, and use them for Your glory . . .
so that through these offerings,
Your word may be proclaimed,
Your ministry may be enhanced,
and Your world may be reached
for the sake of Jesus Christ our Lord, in whose name we pray. Amen.
*HYMN How Firm a Foundation #361
How firm a foundation, ye saints of the Lord,
Is laid for your faith in God’s excellent Word!
What more can be said than to you God hath said,
To you, who for refuge to Jesus have fled?
“Fear not, I am with thee, O be not dismayed,
For I am thy God and will still give thee aid;
I’ll strengthen thee, help thee, and cause thee to stand,
Upheld by My righteous, omnipotent hand.
“When through the deep waters I call thee to go,
The rivers of sorrow shall not overflow;
For I will be near thee, thy troubles to bless,
And sanctify to thee thy deepest distress.
“When through fiery trials thy pathway shall lie,
My grace, all-sufficient, shall be thy supply;
The flame shall not hurt thee; I only design
Thy dross to consume, and thy gold to refine.
“The soul that on Jesus hath leaned for repose,
I will not, I will not desert to its foes;
That soul, though all hell should endeavor to shake,
I’ll never, no never, no never forsake.”
POSTLUDE I Vow To Thee, My Country (from Jupiter) – Gustav Holst