For Sunday October 25, 2015
Year B, Twenty-Second Sunday After Pentecost
Twenty second Sunday after Pentecost :: Green ::
Editor’s Note: We are in the midst of about 25 weeks of texts which are less connected by one theme than to each other week to week. The lectionary follows somewhat sequential readings in the Hebrew Scriptures and the Psalms which supplement them. The New Testament Readings are also sequential week to week, but do not necessarily fit a theme. Given this, I will be attempting to tie Call to Worship and Invocation to Hebrew Scriptures; Stewardship and Communion to Gospel and Epistle with little concern for overarching theme.
Call to Worship (Responsive)
Adapted from Psalm 126
L: May those who sow in tears, reap with shouts of joy,
P: and those who go out weeping, come home with shouts of joy.
L: When the LORD restored the fortunes of Zion,
P: We were like those who dream.
L: Then our mouths were filled with laughter,
P: And our tongues with shouts of joy.
L: For it was said among the nations: “The LORD has done great things”
P: The LORD has done great things, and we rejoice.
Gather us in LORD, from the farthest reaches, bring the blind and the lame, those with child and those in labor. Gather in the weak and the strong, the sad and rejoicing, bring together those who cry out and those who shout with joy. Bring us together to sing and shout your praises. We have come as your people the descendants of your holy tribes. Help us to seek and find you in this time of worship, and revel in our praise of your holy name. For you have brought us forgiveness and hope, you have given us the joy of serving. Help us to celebrate your gifts in the name of your Son, Jesus the Christ.
When Jesus encountered Bartimaeus, son of Timaeus, calling out from the roadside he said, “What do you want me to do for you?” Each day this church stands ready to receive those who call out and says to them: “What do you want me to do for you?” On our best days we are able to help. We are able to help because we come together bringing tithes and offerings which are put to work for the glory of God. This week someone will come to our door in need. Will we be able to respond? We will now receive the tithes and offerings which make our “yeses” possible.
O God you hear our voices crying out “Son of David, have mercy on me!” We know that you respond. Bless these tithes and offerings, that as we seek to be your hands and feet in this world, that we too, will be able to hear the need, and respond in your holy name.
What did you bring to the table today? Did you bring the bread? Did you bring the fruit of the vine? Chances are good most of us said, “No. We came as guests, invited.” Yet we are called to bring something to the table. When our host is Jesus Christ, holy blameless, undefiled, separated from sinners and exalted above the heavens; we are called to bring something to the table. We are called to bring our sin, and our willingness to accept Christ’s sacrifice and forgiveness. Come to the table. Lay down your sin, taste God’s grace, and know that the Lord is good.
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