March 17, 2019

March 17, 2019

Worship Resources for
the Center for Faith and Giving

Second Sunday of Lent

Genesis 15:1-12, 17-18

Psalm 27

Philippians 3:17-4:1

Luke 13:31-35 Call to Worship  (from Psalm 27)

One:  We’re here, eager to give thanks to God, the stronghold of life.
Many:  We come without fear!
One:  Confident in God’s goodness, we lift our hearts and voices.
Many:  Together, we sing out our joy,
One:  for the goodness of the Lord is all around us!
Many:  So let us worship the Lord our God!

Opening Prayer 

God of action and of might, we see your goodness and our hearts take courage.  Thank you for this opportunity to gather in your house.
Quiet our racing minds as we wait for you to make your loving presence known.
Enliven us once more, that we might not allow fear to distract us but allow our allegiance to you to show in what we say and what we do.  AMEN

Moment for Stewardship 

Paul, writing to the Christians in the church at Philippi, invites them to follow his example as they decide how to live their lives.

Paul encourages us, as we read these words, to recognize our citizenship is in heaven.  We’re beloved daughters and sons of the Most High, and so are encouraged to stand firm in the Lord.

Not many of us would be willing to be like Paul in traveling from place to place to preach and teach.  But we are all able to find ways to share our identity as Christians with the ways we use our resources:  time, talent and treasure.

So today, consider how you might share time this week with the model of Paul.  Will you offer time to teach in Sunday School, or Vacation Bible School?

Imagine ways you can offer your talent:  come in to repair something you’ve noticed is broken, or clean something you see needs some attention.  Offer child-care to a worn-out young parent in your neighborhood.  Cook a meal for someone just coming home from the hospital. Draw a picture for the bulletin, or finish crocheting a blanket you then donate to your local shelter for homeless folks.

And what treasure will you offer?   Weekly giving to this congregation?  Food for the food pantry?  Support for Week of Compassion in response to recent tornados or fires?

Take up the example of Paul, and rejoice as you plant your feet firmly in the Way of Jesus.

Prayer of Thanksgiving

God of all good gifts, because you have first provided for us, we return to you a portion of what we’ve received.  Please use these gifts, and help us live up to our good intentions to be imitators of Paul. Multiply what we’ve offered, and know we are living in gratitude, AMEN

Invitation to Communion  (from Luke 13)

In Luke’s Gospel, Jesus uses a common image of care to speak of his yearning for the people of Jerusalem: “How often have I desired to gather your children together as a hen gathers her brood under her wings, and you were not willing!”

What a gift it is to be invited to come together at this table.  Here we find signs of Jesus’ love; the bread of life and the cup of salvation.  With communion, we are nurtured, as a hen nurtures and protects her chicks.

Are you willing to come?

All are welcome.  In this Lenten season, take these symbols and be refreshed!

Paraphrase (in 2 voices) of Philippians 3:17-4:1
Copied from

Reader 1: Brothers! Sisters! Do what I do. Live your lives together after my
example. Imitate those who imitate me.
Reader 2: The thing is, there are many who don’t do that. They live their
lives as if they are enemies of the cross of Jesus. It pains me to
tell you this – it brings tears to my eyes to think this is the case.
But I’ve told you before, and now I feel like I must make it clear
Reader 1: They are making wrecks of their lives. They are headed for
destruction. Their god? Their god is their belly, their insatiable
appetite for the things of this world, the things by which their
minds are consumed. And, as a result, they make glorious what is
actually shameful.
Reader 2: But we are citizens of heaven, you and I. And it is from heaven
that we await our coming Savior – the Lord, Jesus Christ. And
therefore, unlike them, we don’t act like our shame is somehow
glorious. Instead, we let the Lord change our shame into a glory
like his.
And how does he do that?
By the very same power he uses to bring all things under his
Reader 1: And therefore, sisters. And, therefore, brothers. You whom I love.
You whom I miss. My joy and my crown. My beloved.
Readers 1&2:   Stand firm, in the power of the Lord.

We are happy to provide these liturgical resources to the church and we also happy to receive your support that helps not only to underwrite the cost of production, but supports the work of teaching generosity as a spiritual discipline across the life of the church. 

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