Gathering God, we give thanks for the vision, adventure, and passion that have brought us together in this holy place. Help us to be open today grateful to meet Jesus in each other and in our neighbors near and far; happy to do a new thing; thankful to be your church together, to do that which by your design cannot be done apart. Challenge us, inspire us, strengthen and renew us. God of grace and wonder, be with us in this place; may our worship today strengthen us to do more than we can imagine, that your world might be healed, that your justice might come, and that your hope might be spread.
May it be so! Amen.
Compassionate Christ, you have shown your love in works of healing, forgiveness, and justice,and by giving yourself to us and for us, and in your death and resurrection. Yet we are slow to love and to serve, we seek to have our own needs met before caring for the needs of others; we fail to give ourselves, and choose instead to preserve our safety, our comfort and our privilege. Forgive us, heal us, and teach us to live lives of compassion following your example.
Jesus, in extravagant compassion, has already secured our forgiveness and calls us to live as those who are renewed and thankful. Receive this grace and share it.
We are so grateful; we will go and live differently because of what you, Jesus, have done for us.
God, our world desperately needs your compassion and grace. We are at war and need to learn peace and understanding, we are greedy and selfish and need to learn to serve and to share the abundance of your world, we are impatient and careless and need to learn to use this world’s resources wisely and sustainably, we are callous and judgmental and need to learn to care for and to befriend one another, and we are among those who are sick, grieving, lonely, broken and wounded.
Hear our prayers, Lord, and answer. Teach us to live as those who give and receive compassion, even as you have been compassionate toward us.
Watchword for the Week
Blessed are those who trust in the Lord, whose trust is the Lord.
Watchword for Today
But who can endure the day of his coming, and who can stand when he appears?
Malachi 3: 2
Listen! I am standing at the door, knocking; if you hear my voice and open the door, I will come into you and eat with you, and you with me.
Prayer for Today
Dear Savior Jesus, prepare us for your coming. May we be ready to open the door of our hearts when you stand and knock. We praise you for your saving grace. In the name of Jesus.
Congregation Watchword for the Year
Serve God with single mind and willing heart; for the Lord searches every mind
1 Chronicles 28:9