Friday, February 08, 2019

Liturgy with communion for February 17, 2019 (Epiphany 6 - C)

Texts:  Jeremiah 17:5-10; Psalm 1; 1 Corinthians 15:12-20; Luke 6:17-26

Call to Worship
Blessed are those who trust - in God! 
We come in trust, to be grounded in God's love.
Blessed are those who hope - in God!
We come in hope, trusting in the One who gives us life.
Blessed are those who delight - in God's Word!
We come to hear God speak, hoping for healing and joy.

Prayer of the Day
God of our wonder,
Heart of creation:
we are blessed when
we feast on your Word:
     that Word which embraces us;
     that Word which teaches us;
     that Word which transfigures us;
     that Word which grounds us.
Give us your Word this, and every, day.
Jesus Christ,
Heart of God's children:
we are blessed when
we have your compassion:
     that heart for the poor;
         for the hungry;
         for those who weep;
         for those left out.
Give us your heart this, and every, day.

Holy Delight,
Grace's Heartbeat:
we bear fruit when
we overflow with your spirit:
     that spirit of generosity;
     that spirit of pouring ourselves out in service;
     that spirit of bearing another's burden.
Give us your spirit this, and every, day.

God in Community, Holy in One,
may our hearts beat as one with your heart,
even as we pray as Jesus has taught us,
(The Lord’s Prayer)

Call to Reconciliation
Now, if what we hear from the world is true, we would have no need to come before God. But in fact, the witness of scripture, and of the faithful, is true. God is to be trusted with every secret of our hearts, as well as offered our brokenness. Join me as we pray to the One who waits to forgive us.

Unison Prayer for Forgiveness
     We confess what we are afraid to face, Blessing God, that the seductions of this world gnaw away at our hearts. We have more and more to choose from at the market, and so we forget those whose only choice is hunger. Our sense that we are your favorites causes us to make fun of those we are convinced are not. We are so consumed with saving enough for the future, we overlook those who have so little this day.
     Forgive us, Heartbroken God, for thinking we are the center of your world. Pour your living water into us, so we might send down roots deep into your heart, and so become those people who are blessings to others, as we have received the gift of new life from Jesus Christ, our Lord and Savior.

Silence is kept

Assurance of Pardon
Blessed are you: for God forgives you and restores you to new life. Rejoice in this day and dance for joy!
Thanks be to God! Our faith is true, and our hope is grounded in the promises of the One we can trust not only on this day, but in every day to come.  Amen.
Prayer of Dedication/Offering
You pour out your abundance on us, Loving God, as we can alleviate the sufferings of others, turn their woes into blessings, and their emptiness into overflowing grace and life.  Take the gifts we offer and use them in the work of your new life which is in our midst.  In Jesus’ name, we pray.  Amen.

Great Prayer of Thanksgiving
May the God of blessings be with you!
And with you!
Let us lift our hearts to the One who plants us by living water.
We open our hearts, to be filled with God’s grace.
Let us sing glad songs to God, who takes delight in us.
We will sing of our blessings to the One we trust in all things.

You opened your heart,
God of every wonder,
and creation flowed forth
transforming chaos into a garden of delights:
     trees stretching to touch the sky,
     rivers tickling the floors of valleys,
     stars twinkling your message of joy
           to those staring into space.
Your Spirit of generosity offered
all these gifts to those shaped in your image,
     inviting us to picnic by the waters of life.
But we chose to sink our roots
in the sandy clay of sin and death,
     taking our places at the scoffers’ table.
You blessed the prophets with your words,
sending them to proclaim your healing words
     to all who would come and listen.
But when our hearts refused to budge,
you sent Jesus, your Hope, your Life
to become one of us.

Preparing to come to your Table,
we join our voices with all who delight
in you, in every place and time:

Holy, holy, holy are you, God who blesses.
All creation trusts in your goodness.
Hosanna in the highest!

Blessed is the One who has been raised from the dead.
Hosanna in the highest!

Holy are you, God of living waters,
and you bless us through Jesus Christ, our Lord.
Gardener of your grace, he came,
     so we would not be like lonely
     desert shrubs with no relief.
Word of your heart, he spoke,
     blessing us as your beloved children.
Bearer of your life, he went
     into the unpitying arms of death,
     so we would not be imprisoned
     by sin forever.

As we remember the blessings he has brought to us,
as we recall the curses he endured for us,
we speak of that mystery we call faith:

Christ died, trusting himself to your love;
Christ is risen, so we can trust in resurrection faith;
Christ is with us, trusting us to proclaim the good news.

Here at this Table of life,
your spirit flows into the gifts
of the bread and the cup,
your grace, your joy, your peace
seeping and trickling into all gathered,
so we become trees planted by your waters,
     sharing your kingdom with the poor,
     feeding all who hunger,
     wiping away the tears of all who grieve,
     lifting up all despised by the world.

And when our journeys have ended in you,
gathered with our sisters and brothers
around the feast prepared for all time to come,
we will join in singing our praise to you,
God in Community, Holy in One.  Amen.

Grounded in God’s love, we are sent out
to share abundance with those who have so little.
Blessed with Jesus’ hope, we go forth
to fill the emptiness of those longing for justice.
Blessed with the Spirit’s delight, we dance into the world
to take the hands of our sisters and brother,
and gather at the edge of living waters for a picnic.

(c)  Thom M. Shuman