October 28, 2018
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Call to Worship (from Psalm 34)
One: We’ve come here to bless the Lord!
Many: Praise God!
One: God delivers us beyond all our fears.
Many: We’re happy; we’ve come to bless the Lord together!
One: From home and work, from school and play, in good times and tough times
Many: we will bless the Lord at all times!
All: God’s praises will continually be in our mouths!
Opening Prayer(from Mark 10:46-52)
God, we come this morning, not completely confident we have our priorities straight. In the swirl of demands and challenges we each face,
we lift our prayer to you.
Help us be like Bartimaeus, encountering the healer and receiving clear vision!
Open us to the sights and sounds of your presence in this place.
Make us bold to speak of our deepest desires,
that we, together, might be made well in body, mind and spirit!
In Jesus’ name, AMEN
Today we’ve heard a story of Jesus healing someone who is blind. Looking deeply, we realize this son of Timaeus was physically blind, but had a clear vision of what he wanted from Jesus. He spoke out boldly, first asking for mercy and then responding directly to Jesus’ question.
Many of us can see with our eyes – we are not blind – yet our spiritual blindness leaves us unable to perceive the needs around us and our capacity to respond.
As we come to a time of sharing our resources and our lives, imagine what it would mean to gladly spring up, leave behind the comfort of our “blankie” (cloak) and move out to follow Jesus on the Way!
Will you take one step ahead today? Will you receive the vision Jesus offers, and respond in full faith?
(If possible, have your musicians sing Paul Baloche’s “Open the Eyes of My Heart”, use the YouTube video of Michael W. Smith singing it.
If that doesn’t work, have the congregation sing verse 1, Chalice Hymnal #586, “Open My Eyes, That I May See”)
Prayer of Thanksgiving
We bring these gifts to you, Holy God, with cheerfulness and joyful hearts.
Receive them from our open eyes, open hearts and open hands.
Use these gifts and use us to expand your work here and around the world.
Invitation to Communion
The Psalmist cries out “taste and see that the Lord is good”!
And Bartimaeus cries out “I want to see again”.
When we come to this table, we’re invited to be like the Psalmist and like Bartimaeus. Each one of us is welcome. There is a place for each one who will “taste and see”.
In these gifts of bread and cup, we taste the joy and sorrow of the Upper Room. In this loaf and with this juice, we see the wonder of “one bread, one body, one Lord of all”. In this company of companions on the journey, we are not alone.
Come, eager to follow Jesus on the way of discipleship. Joining with others, nourished by this meal, may our faith make us well.
(use Chalice Hymnal #393 as your communion hymn)