EIGHTH Sunday after Pentecost 2023

strawberries and oranges
Photo by Trang Doan on Pexels.com



Spirit of the Living God, fall fresh on me.
Spirit of the Living God, fall fresh on me.
Melt me, mold me, fill me, use me.
Spirit of the Living God, fall fresh on me

Almighty God, enthroned above all, you alone are God over the nations of the earth. Even the planets, the stars, and the galaxies are placed by your hand.

Where could we go from your Spirit? Where could we flee from your presence? If we go up to the heavens, you are there; if we go down into the caves of the earth or the depths of the sea, you are there.

God of all creation, we sing praises to your name; we stand jubilant before your glory, power, and beauty.

God of certainty, God of truth, our confidence is in you and in you alone.

Yet we live in a fallen world and we are an imperfect people.

Our world is filled with pain and alienation.

We know of illness when body or mind is failing, and the loneliness of spirit it brings.

We know of separation from parent or child, from friend or neighbor, and the emptiness of life it brings.

We know of strangeness in new communities and in changing communities, and the longing it brings.

We know of alienation caused by unemployment or poverty or discrimination, and the pain it brings.

We have become strangers to our relatives, and foreigners to our own families.

How can we sing the Lord’s song in a strange land? Let our cry for help come to you.

I am a God nearby, says the Lord. Do I not fill heaven and earth? I am the Lord your God. I have called you out from the peoples and you shall be holy to me.

We declare your praise, the One who called us out of darkness into your wonderful light. We are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people belonging to you.

Gracious God, we humbly confess that we walk in the way of the indifferent, who depend on their strength alone. We sit among the scornful, who deny the need for your guidance and power. Our hearts are not satisfied with riches vulnerable to moth and rust and thief, yet we zealously store up those very treasures. Set our minds on things unseen and eternal, that our emptiness within may be filled.

We humbly confess that we fail to welcome the stranger among us. We pass by the neighbor who is hungry and thirsty, naked, sick, and in prison. We sing of your healing power and your unconditional love, but we fail to make our sanctuaries true havens for the suffering and the exiled. Give us the will to be ambassadors for our Savior and faithful stewards of the ministry of reconciliation entrusted to us.

Lord, have mercy on us. Amen.

Without Christ we were strangers to the covenants of promise, having no hope and without God in the world. But now in Christ Jesus we who were once far off have been brought near by the blood of Christ. He is our peace.

We are no longer strangers and aliens, but citizens with the saints and members of the household of God, with Christ himself as the cornerstone.

Therefore, let us affirm our faith in the Triune God.

We believe in the one God who has created the land and sea and heavens and all that is in them; who established a world that was good; who gives to us the task of watchful and responsible care over it; who is certainty and truth.

We believe in the one God who in Jesus Christ assumed our humanity and knew our life as child, youth, and adult; who dined with sinners and lived with the homeless; who confronted popular opinion and power; who remained obedient in temptation and suffering; whose triumph was a servant’s death and resurrection.

We believe in the one God who comes to us as comforter and advocate; who does not leave us as orphans; who brings peace and calms the troubled heart; who bestows gifts for serving, healing, showing compassion, and doing miracles; who alone is the power and the wisdom of our proclamation.

Let us in faith keep our eyes fixed on the promises of God, though we see them and greet them from a distance.

We confess that we are strangers and foreigners on the earth, a people who are seeking our true home.

We desire a better place, that is, a heavenly one. Indeed, God has prepared a city for us.

Let us lay aside every weight and the sin that clings so closely, and let us run with perseverance the race that is set before us.


Statement of Purpose

By the grace of God to make disciples of all people, both local and global. To enhance the deeper experiences with our Lord Jesus Christ through prayer, Bible Study, witnessing and the worship hour.

Congregation Watchword for the Year

If we confess our sins, he who is faithful and just will forgive us our sins and

cleanse us from all unrighteousness. (1 John 1:9)

February 2024
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