Sunday, May 22, 2016

Liturgy with communion for May 29, 2016 (Pentecost 2/Trinity 1/Proper 4/Ordinary 9 - C)

Texts: 1 Kings 18:20-21, (22-29), 30-39; Psalm 96; Galatians 1:1-12; Luke 7:1-10

Call to Worship
With loud engines at the race track,
and with soft-spoken wisdom:
sing to God new songs of wonder!
With planets spinning in the galaxies,
and with jack hammers tearing up our streets:
sing to God new songs of joy!
With fireworks in summer’s night skies,
and with winter’s ice crunching under our boots:
sing to God new songs of grace!
With crowds at exciting sports venues,
and with children whispering dreams to their pets:
sing to God new songs of hope!
Prayer of the Day
we would take our
   fears, doubts, broken dreams
         and set them to death’s
                mournful dirge,
you take them, rearranging the notes
          and rewriting the lyrics for
     drums, electric guitar, tambourines
                 and keyboard,
   singing a new song
                     of joy
               to us.
Composer of Creation,
we give you the glory!
the world considers us
     putting us out on the
          BOGO clearance table
               on the sidewalk,
   you come under the awning,
telling the proprietor
     to put us on your
          (which you will
              pay in full
              before the next billing cycle
Liberator of our lives,
we give you the glory!
day after day,
           we cannot seem
     to break the cycles of
you come, proclaiming
          the good news,
     speaking the Word
           which heals
Spirit of Peace,
we give you the glory!
God in Community, Holy in One,
to you be the glory forever and ever,
as we pray, saying,
(The Lord's Prayer) 

Call to Reconciliation
We go limping along, convinced we can make it on our own, that we are too busy for God.  But when we look at our mistakes, the words we wish we could take back, the hurts we long to heal, we know we must confess, so God can forgive us and wrap us in steadfast love.  Join me, as we pray together saying,

Unison Prayer for Forgiveness
     We want you to know, Holy God, that we do try.  Between the politicians and the pundits, it is easy to become confused as to how we should live.  We spend so much time trying to win the approval of certain people, that we forget our call to serve those around us.  We are so busy telling others ‘go there’ or ‘do this,’ we cannot hear your whispers of love.
     We do not presume to come to you expecting easy grace, for we are aware of what it cost you to forgive us, Tender God.  But speak the word, and we will know your mercy; speak the word, and we will be made whole; speak the Word, Jesus Christ, and we will find that faith to trust you in every moment.

Silence is kept

Assurance of Pardon
God comes, not to punish, not to condemn, but to judge – with that righteousness which brings redemption, with that truth which sets us free.
Let it be known this day.  The Lord indeed is God, who brings forgiveness and hope to all people.  Glory to God!  Amen.

Prayer of Dedication/Offering
We come with gratitude, as well as our gifts, Loving God.  As we offer them to you, we pray all might know of your presence in their lives, and that these offerings may bring them your hope, your grace, and your peace.  In Jesus' name, we pray.  Amen.

Great Prayer of Thanksgiving
May creation’s Lord be with you!
And also with you!
Here at this Table, dear ones, draw closer to God.
We come, to offer our hearts to God.
Join the chorus of the universes in praising God.
Our voices unite with all of God’s people in songs of joy.
All creation is grounded in you,
Sovereign God, who spoke the Word
and let it be known that you were coming
     so seas might roar your majesty,
     so fields might exult your glory,
     so trees might sing your joy.
You formed us in your divine image,
letting it be known that we were yours,
the people of your heart and hopes.
But sin and death called our names,
     and we chose to follow those petty gods,
     limping along, letting our dance partners
     lead us as seduction’s sirens sang their songs.
You sent the prophets to intercede,
hoping that we would listen,
     but we made no answer, gave no response.
So you decided to come closer still,
sending Jesus to bring us your healing.
With those who gave you glory in every time and place,
with those from all over this wide earth,
we sing that new song which has echoed down the generations:
Holy, holy, holy are you, Sovereign of the universe.
All creation joins in singing your glory.
Hosanna in the highest!
Blessed is the One who comes in your name.
Hosanna in the highest!
You indeed are God, Holy One,
and Jesus Christ is your blessed Child.
When we limped along through the world,
     he came to strengthen us to walk in your way.
When our petty gods became too busy for us,
     he came to listen to our faltering prayers.
When we would cling to sin in every moment,
     he went to the cross
          so sin would have no voice to call us,
          so death would be left empty-handed.
As we rejoice in his coming to us,
as we remember we would have no hope without him,
we declare that mystery we know as faith:
Christ died, breaking the power of sin;
Christ was raised, breaking the cycle of death;
Christ comes, bringing the power of the gospel for all.
We sing glad songs to you,
God of honor and majesty,
for here at the Table,
you pour out your Spirit
on the gifts of your creation
set apart for sacred use.
The grain of exultant fields
is shaped into the Bread of life,
     which strengthens us to go forth
     to intercede for those who
     are not highly valued by our world,
     yet who need healing and hope.
The fruit of creation’s vines
becomes the sweet nectar of grace,
which fills our emptiness until it overflows
into justice for the oppressed,
       release for all held captive,
       recovery for the addicted,
       good news for the broken-hearted.
And when all our times have come to an end,
     when the new seas roar with wonder,
     when newly planted meadows exult with laughter,
     when the trees of life sing for joy,
we will lift our voices with our sisters and brothers,
singing the new songs of eternal life with you,
God in Community, Holy in One.  Amen.

Go now to sing new songs of wonder:
in the neighborhoods where we live,
in the places we work, we will share God's love.
Go now to sing new songs of joy:
with grandparents volunteering at schools,
with children learning to read, we will be Christ's compassion. 
Go now to sing new songs of grace:
with those who have lost their way,
with the bruised and bullied, we will be the Spirit's peace.
Go now to sing new songs of hope:
we will teach all people God's love songs!

(c) 2106 Thom M. Shuman