* Stand if willing and able
Welcome and Announcements
Prelude: “Sonata in Bb Major” Adagio, by George P. Telemann
* Call to Worship
If it were not for God, who is on our side, we surely would be swept away by sadness and fear.
Blessed be the Lord, our protector!
Our help is in the name of the Lord, who made heaven and earth.
Blessed be God’s holy name!
Let us pray together:
* Prayer of the Day
God of courage, you gave Esther the strength to speak out and the intelligence she needed to save her people. Help us believe you are still present and active in this world and that Your grace remains as an everlasting force in our lives. In Jesus Christ we pray, Amen.
* Hymn of Praise #645 “Sing Praise to God Who Reigns Above”
* Invitation to Healing
The prayer of faith will save the sick, and the Lord will raise them up, and anyone who has committed sins will be forgiven. Therefore let us confess our sins and pray for one another so that all may be healed.
* Prayer of Wholeness
God of unity, we live in a world where our lives move between inclusivity and exclusivity. We often move toward the latter, trying to oust from our circles those who do not think like us, act like us, or look like us. Forgive our need to reject and to always be on the lookout for those things that make us different. Give us the eyes of our Teacher, who knows unconditional love and compassion and sees us all as one, for it is in his name that we pray, Amen.
* Hymn #471 “O Lord, Hear My Prayer” (Repeat 3x)
* Assurance of God’s Presence and Passing of the Peace
Friends, believe this Good News: God is One and God is Three – Love constantly flowing in, out, and through; the gift of Jesus Christ for me and for you. For this we say: Thanks be to God!
Since God has loved us through Christ, let us love one another. The Lord be with you!
And also with you!
Please share a sign of peace with those with whom you are worshiping.
* Sung Response #591 “Halle, Halle, …” (chorus twice)
Celebrating Joys: Where We Have Seen God at Work
* Sung Response #647 “Give Thanks”
Prayer of Illumination:
Your Word is our salt; without it, we lose our being, our joy, and our ability to endure. Open our hearts and our minds to listen, to really listen, to your Word today. Amen.
Hebrew Scripture: Esther 7:1-6, 9-10, 9:20-22 pp. 613, 615 OT
“The Word of the Lord” “Thanks be to God”
Epistle Reading: James 5:13-20 p. 314 NT
“The word of the Lord” “Thanks be to God”
Gospel Reading: Mark 9:38-50 pp. 63-64 NT
“The Gospel of the Lord” “Praise to you, O Christ”
Meditation: “The Legacy of James” ~ Pastor Scott
RESPONSE TO THE WORD
* Hymn of Response #718 “Take Up Your Cross, the Savior Said”
* Affirmation of Faith: Adapted from the Confession of 1967
New life in Christ takes shape in a community in which people know that God loves and accepts them in spite of what they are. They therefore accept themselves and love others, knowing that no one has any ground on which to stand, except God’s grace.
Intercessory Prayers of the People
Call and response: “Lord, in your mercy:” “Hear our prayers.”
Minute for Mission
Invitation to Present our Offerings
Today and every day we see signs of God’s grace and abundance; but we also know that there is suffering and need in the world. Give freely of what you have been given, as a witness to God’s actions in the world.
Offertory: “Sonata in Bb Major” Cantabile, G. P. Telemann
*Doxology Hymn #606 using text below
Praise God from whom all blessings flow!
Praise Christ all creatures here below!
Praise Holy Spirit evermore!
Praise Triune God whom we adore! Amen!
* Prayer of Thanksgiving/Dedication
Blessed be the Lord, for God is good, and god’s love endures forever. Our Creator, help us to mirror your goodness through all that we can offer the world, and it is in your Son’s name that we pray the prayer he taught, saying:
* The Lord’s Prayer “…debts…debtors…” Amen.
* Closing Hymn #641 “When in Our Music God is Glorified”
If it had not been for the Lord who was on our side, we would not have been freed or blessed. Do not be a stumbling block; be salt, have salt in yourselves, and be at peace with one another.
May God, who is our strength, help us celebrate the freedom we have received, and remember his great deeds and grow in trust. May Jesus Christ, in whose name we find power, help us to honor his name with everything we do and say. And may the Holy Spirit, who helps us to pray, motivate in us the practice of prayer, discovering, while praying, that there is indeed power in the name of Jesus.
Friends, this worship has ended, let our service begin!
* Congregational Song: “Let There Be Peace on Earth”
Lyrics found on the inside front cover of the hymnal.
Bathrooms and a diaper changing station are located in the Fellowship Hall. Please join us in the outdoor pavilion with appropriate social distancing for refreshments and conversation following worship.
Questions for Reflection:
How can you see God as an active presence in your life and in the life of others? How can you be grateful and adore God not only in the times when you are the subject of God’s blessing but also in times of trouble and tribulation?
Household Prayer: Morning
May the first words in my mouth today be the sound of the name of Jesus. Lead me to reflect on his power as I seek to live my day, honoring the One who gave me salvation and a new life. In his powerful name I pray, Amen.
Household Prayer: Evening
God, was I an agent of hope and salvation to others as you have been to me? As the day winds down, help me to think about those times during the day when I lived in your grace and the times when I failed to be salt in your world. Keep on working in my life, through the power of the Holy Spirit, so that I can become more like you want me to be. In the name of Jesus. Amen.