Friday, January 08, 2016

Liturgy w/communion for January 17, 2016 (Ephiphany 2 - C)

Texts:  Isaiah 62:1-5; Psalm 36:5-10; 1 Corinthians 12:1-11; John 2:1-11
Call to Worship
We come this day, Precious God,
as people in need of your steadfast love:
with you is the fountain of life;
in your Light we see light.
We gather this day, Water-changing God,
as people looking for signs:
with you is the fountain of grace;
in your Hope we see hope.
We worship this day, Gifting God,
as people who confess Jesus as our Lord:
with you is the fountain of joy;
in your Life we see life.

Prayer of the Day

With you, Enduring Joy,
we find our refuge.
In the shelter of your compassion,
we are made whole;
in the abundance of your grace,
we are fed;
in the depths of your living waters,
we are transfigured into new people.

With you, Revealer of Glory,
we are filled to the brim.
Our lips cannot contain your praise;
our hearts overflow with your spirit;
our lives are poured out for others.

Activating Spirit,
we find our common life
in this community of faith.
United by a common confession,
we take our uncommon gifts
and share them
in serving all people.

Same in love, same in grace,
God in Community, Holy in One,
hear us as we pray as Jesus taught us, saying,
(The Lord’s Prayer)

Call to Reconciliation
We cannot claim ignorance of our sins, for we know how we have not lived as God's
people.  But God refuses to forsake us, waiting to forgive us and call us as God's
children.  Please join me as we pray, saying,

Unison Prayer for Forgiveness
   Delight of the Ages, we cannot remain silent, but must speak of the ways we misuse your gifts.  In our desire to have more and more, we cause more damage to your good creation.  In our obsession with ourselves, we have desolated that lives of those around us.  When we hoard what you have given us, we cannot be a blessing to other people.
     Forgive us, Restless God, so we might be restored to life.  May your steadfast love save and strengthen us to share our gifts with others, even as you have shared the Gift of Jesus Christ, our Lord and Savior.

Silence is kept

Assurance of Pardon
God delights in you.  So much, that God will not rest until you are at peace.  God will not remain silent, but will call you by name: 'My Delight.'
God's steadfast love extends to the heavens, and reaches down to touch our hearts.  Thanks be to God who forgives and saves us!  Amen.
Prayer of Dedication/Offering
Sometimes, we believe the gifts we offer do not matter.  But when they are combined with all the other gifts – of healing, of hope, of compassion, of your heart – they can become rivers of grace and justice flowing through the lives of everyone around us.  We offer our gifts to you in this hope, as we pray in Jesus’ name.  Amen.
Great Prayer of Thanksgiving
May the God of steadfast love be with you!
And also with you!
Here, we will find refuge in our God.
Here, our hearts may be offered for healing and hope.
Let us feast on the abundance of God’s grace.
We will sing glad songs as we come to this Table.
You could not rest, Steadfast Love,
until creation had emerged from chaos;
you would not keep silent
but spoke the Word which
   placed the sun like a burning torch,
   caused the moon to shine like the dawn,
   crowned the night sky with stars.
Shaped in your image, you delighted in us,
   but we forsook you for sin,
   moving into the neighborhood called Desolation.
Prophets came repeatedly, to remind us
of your never-ending delight in us,
   but we thought their words
   were of no concern to us.
So you sent your Child to us,
the One who would fill us
to the brim with your gracious hope.
So with our sisters and brothers around us,
in the midst of the richness of your gifts,
we celebrate your steadfast love for us:
Holy, holy, holy are you, Refuge of our hearts.
All creation sings of your glory.
Hosanna in the highest!
Blessed is the One who is the same Lord of all.
Hosanna in the highest!
Holy are you, Light in whom we see light,
and Jesus is your vindication for all to see.
He could have rested in glory,
   but came hurrying to gather
   us up in your grace.
He could have remained silent in disapproval,
   but spoke over and over
   of your steadfast love for us.
He could have joined the world
in calling us all sorts of names,
   but whispered that we are
   your beloved children.
He could have forsaken us,
   but went into death’s desolation,
   so you would rejoice over him
   on Resurrection’s morning.
As we remember the life he led and offered to all,
as we look for signs of his presence in our midst,
we would proclaim that mystery we call faith:
Christ died, faithful to the very end;
Christ was raised, your righteousness drawn
   out of the depths of death;
Christ will come, so we will no longer be alone.
The same Spirit which moved over the waters
is now poured out over the gifts
of the bread and the cup, created from
the rich variety of creation’s gifts.
This bread, though broken,
strengthens us to be your people,
   who will not remain silent,
      but will confront injustice;
   who will not rest until
      all the broken are healed.
The cup, dipped into grace’s river
and handed to us, sends us forth
to be a fountain of life,
   where empty longings might
      be filled with love;
   where desolation might be
      replaced with hope.
And when, at the end of all time,
we are gathered in Beulah land,
we will be seated with our sisters
and brothers at your Feast,
where we will discover you have save
the best until then, as we sing to you,
God in Community, Holy in One.  Amen.
God sends us out to the lonely, the forsaken.
We will go to gather them up into the heart of love.
Jesus sends us out to throw a party for those
who nibble at the stale crusts offered by the world.
We will go to sit with those who have no family,
to fill their lives with hope and grace.
The Spirit sends us forth, as transformed people,
as those who have been given new names.
We will go to those sunk deep in the muck of life,
Who long for new days, for new joy, for new wonder.

© 2016 Thom M. Shuman