Third Sunday in lent 2023

close up photo of chick
Photo by Adil on Pexels.com

There’s a sweet, sweet spirit in this place,
and I know that it’s the spirit of the Lord
There are sweet expressions on each face,
and I know that it’s the presence of the Lord.
Sweet Holy Spirit, Sweet Heavenly Dove,
stay right here with us filling us with your love.
And for those blessings we lift our hearts with praise;
without a doubt we’ll know that we have been revived,
when we shall leave this place.

I take no pleasure in the death of the wicked, says the Lord, but rather in the conversion of the wicked, that they may live. Merciful and gracious is the Lord, slow to anger and abounding in kindness. Return to the Lord, your God, who is gracious and merciful.

God does not deal with us according to our sins, nor are we punished according to our iniquities.Yet even now, says the Lord, return to me with all your heart, with fasting, with weeping, and with mourning.Rend your hearts and not your clothing. Return to the Lord your God who is slow to anger and abounding in steadfast love and tender mercy.

Gather the people, sanctify the congregation, assemble the elders, gather the children, and those that suck the breast. Let the bridegroom go forth from his chamber, and the bride out of her closet.Let the priests, the ministers of the Lord, weep between the porch and the altar, and let them say, “Spare your people, O Lord, and do not make your heritage a mockery, a byword among the nations. Why should it be said among the peoples, “Where is their God?”

Then will the Lord be jealous for his land and pity his people. Have mercy on me, O God, according to your steadfast love, according to your abundant mercy blot out my transgressions. Wash me thoroughly from my iniquity, and cleanse me from my sins.

Lord, may your people turn again to you and serve you with all their hearts. With confidence we have asked for your help; may we now know your mercy and love in our lives.Father of infinite mercy and compassion, we recognize the truth of your persistent love and acceptance. We recognize our frailties and limits in finding the inner harmony and personal integrity for which our human hearts so ardently yearn. By the power of your Spirit, help us to turn to your Son, Jesus, ever present in the community of faith, for the reconciling power he alone can give.  Heal the wounds and hurts that divide us.

Renew our minds and hearts as people bound to you in covenant. Let us experience a genuine inner conversion from the paralysis of sin so that with all your saints we may live in the freedom of your children, acknowledging the dominion of Jesus’ power in our lives.

May we find in confession and forgiveness an experience of worship in spirit and truth, so that we may ever proclaim our thanksgiving of your healing acceptance and transforming love.

Since we have been raised with Christ, let us set our hearts on things above, where Christ is seated at the right hand of God.

Assurance of Pardon (I John 1:5-2:2)

This is the message we have heard from him and proclaim to you, that God is light and in him there is no darkness at all. If we say that we have fellowship with him while we are walking in darkness, we lie and do not do what is true, but if we walk in the light as he himself is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus his Son cleanses us from all sin. If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, he who is faithful and just will forgive us our sins and cleanse us from all unrighteousness. If we say that we have not sinned, we make him a liar, and his word is not in us. My little children, I am writing these things to you so that you may not sin. But if anyone does sin, we have an advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous and he is the atoning sacrifice for our sins, and not for ours only but also for the sins of the whole world.

Father, bless our living of this Lenten Season.Let the great day at its end flood all the days between with Easter hope, so that our observance may not darken into gloom but may remain bright with its promise.

The Father of mercies has given us an example of unselfish love in the sufferings of his only Son. Through our service of God and neighbor, may we receive countless blessings.

We believe that by his dying Christ destroyed death forever. May he give us everlasting life. He humbled himself for our sakes. May we follow his example and share in his resurrection.


Watchword for the Week

O come, let us worship and bow down, let us kneel before the Lord, our Maker..
Psalm 95:6


Today’s Watchword

The Lord your God will make you most prosperous in all the work of your hands.
Deuteronomy 30:9



Doctrinal Text

It is God who is at work in you, enabling you both to will and to work for his good pleasures.
Philippians 2:13



Prayer

Source of all riches, what is prosperity? Visions of glory? Power? Getting what we want? Rather, help us to see that it is cooperating with you to make the best use of what you have given us for living lives pleasing to you. AMEN.

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Prayer Request

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)