Monday, September 13, 2010

25th Sunday in Ordinary Time/Proper 20 - C

Texts:  Jeremiah 8:18 - 9:1; Psalm 79:1-9; 1st Timothy 2:1-7; Luke 16:1-13

Call to Worship
We gather together to celebrate the joy in our lives.
God's love fills our hearts to overflowing with laughter.
We gather, in God's presence, to find comfort and hope for our pain.
God's grace wipes away our tears and knits us together as one people.
We gather together, in God's presence, to worship God in faith and truth.
Alleluia! Amen!

Prayer of the Day
Healing God,
when dismay
is our daily companion,
you come to touch us
with your healing hope.
When grief falls on us
like a wall of bricks,
you rebuild our joy
with your comfort and love.

Jesus Christ,
Faithful Spirit,
when bullies pick on us,
you stand by our side.
When neighbors taunt us
for choosing to be faithful,
you commend us
for our wisdom.

Teaching Spirit,
when we are heart-sick
over the brokenness of our lives,
your compassion races
to bring your gentle balm.
When our joy is gone
and we are stained
by the world's cruelty,
you bathe us in the tears
flowing from God's broken heart.

God in Community, Holy in One,
hear us as we pray as Jesus has taught us,
Our Father . . .

Call to Reconciliation
Before we speak, God knows our needs,yet our words open our hearts to God's grace. Let us prepare ourselves for God's healing as, in words and silence, we tell of all that separates us from God and one another. Please join me as we pray,

Unison Prayer of Confession
First of all, Everlasting God, we must confess how we have not lived as your people. We serve many masters - work, wealth, power, addictions - yet find no hope in them. We hear the cries of the poor, and shut the doors of our hearts to them. We ridicule those who expose their hopes and dreams to us.

Forgive us, Compassion's Heart, and heal us of our brokenness. Make us well, so that by our healing, we might be the hope and love others need in their lives, even as Jesus Christ, our Lord and Savior, brought these gifts to us, calling us to be faithful with the grace, peace, and joy entrusted to us.

Silence is kept

Assurance of Pardon
Now that we have let go of the pain, the bitterness, the anger of our lives, let us be kind, tender-hearted, and gentle towards each other, forgiving as God has forgiven us.
We are God's beloved children, and will model God's grace and love in our hearts. Thanks be to God! We are forgiven! Amen.

Great Prayer of Thanksgiving
May the one God be with you!
And also with you!
Lift your hearts to the One who heals them.
We offer our hearts to be filled with the balm of Gilead.
Sing praises to our God who would fill us with springs of joy.
Glad songs of thanksgiving are proclaimed to the One who delivers us to new life.

We praise you for our inheritance,
God of wonder and delight:
springs of water trickling into mighty rivers,
birds of the air cartwheeling in the morning mist,
tall trees dancing with the wind.
As your children, we were blessed
with abundant gifts beyond measure,
but we squandered this bounty, choosing
to buy property in sin and death's community.
Heartsick, you sent the prophets to us,
who indicted us for ruining ourselves,
but we were not strong enough
to pull up our roots and return to you.
So you sent Jesus, faithful in all,
to restore us to full health.

As we join our voices with all
who seek to serve you, far and wide,
we lift our songs of praise to you:

Holy, holy, holy, Author of grace and goodness.
All creation affirms the depths of your love.
Hosanna in the highest!

Blessed is your Child of Compassion who sprints to us.
Hosanna in the highest!

Holy are you, God of our salvation,
and everlasting is the salvation brought
to us by Jesus Christ, our Mediator.
When we were too weak to dig
our way out of the mess we were in,
he came to show us the way out.
When we were too proud to ask for help,
he humbled himself, to become our brother.
When we could not account for our lives,
he balanced the books for us.
When we were faithless in so much,
he determined to go to the cross for us,
so that we might know of your longing
for everyone to be saved.

As we remember his faithful life in every thing he did,
as we celebrate his spirit of sacrifice,
we speak of that truth we call faith:

Christ died, paying the price we could not;
Christ arose, becoming our means of new life;
Christ will come, leading us to that quiet and peaceable life with you.

In these moments, in this holy place,
upon these gifts with offer hope and life,
upon these people who seek to be faithful,
pour out your Spirit of compassion and peace.
As we eat of the bread, tasting its grace,
may we move swiftly in service,
carrying compassion to the lost,
the hurting, the hungry, the homeless.
As we drink from the cup of love,
may the tears of our eyes
at the brokenness of the world,
become the healing balm for your children.

And when all time is gone, when eternity is upon us,
we will join our sisters and brothers from far and wide,
in singing forever your glory and wonder,
God in Community, Holy in One. Amen.

(c) 2010 Thom M. Shuman