July 7, 2019

July 7, 2019

Proper 9

Worship Resources for
the Center for Faith and Giving

2 Kings 5:1-14

Psalm 30 

Galatians 6:(1-6), 7-16

Luke 10:1-11, 16-20

Call to Worship (from Psalm 30)
Sing praises to the Lord, you faithful ones!
God’s favor is for a life-time.
Weeping may linger for the night, but JOY comes with the morning.
God turns our mourning into dancing.
God clothes us with joy, so we might praise God;
we lift our voices to give thanks to the Lord our God!

Opening Prayer
Mighty God, you can turn our mourning into dancing, and clothe each one of us with joy.  We come to offer you our praise today, filled with eager anticipation for the ways you act as Helper for those who struggle.  Open our eyes and tune our hearts to recognize your presence and your care as we worship you.  Accept our thanks as we rejoice in the life you give us!  AMEN

Moment for Stewardship  (from Galatians 6:7-10)

In the heartland of the USA this spring, farmers faced the challenge of  soggy days and flooded fields.  Some made the tough decision not to plant, recognizing the improbability of a crop being able to mature and dry before winter.

Paul could have been speaking to these farmers, but also to any one of us, when he used the familiar phrase “you reap whatever you sow”.  Hard reality: no planting in spring means no harvest this fall.

We know the truth of this teaching when it comes to our giving, as well. When our congregation digs deep and provides with abundance, we find  generosity demonstrated in many ways.
(use specifics from your congregation, or use these suggestions)
*One person’s demonstration of sharing time often encourages others to step up.

*When someone provides a Crock-pot filled with sloppy joe meat, others show up with abundant potato salad, brownies and home-made ice cream.

*One person provides a “matching gift” to build up the AC fund, and others step in to “meet the match”.

We’re eager for an abundant harvest!  How will you sow now to start us toward a full harvest in this congregation?

An old hymn rings out:
1.  Sowing in the morning, sowing seeds of kindness,
Sowing in the noontide and the dewy eve;
Waiting for the harvest, and the time of reaping,
We shall come rejoicing, bringing in the sheaves.

  • Refrain:
    Bringing in the sheaves, bringing in the sheaves,
    We shall come rejoicing, bringing in the sheaves;
    Bringing in the sheaves, bringing in the sheaves,
    We shall come rejoicing, bringing in the sheaves.
  1. Sowing in the sunshine, sowing in the shadows,
    Fearing neither clouds nor winter’s chilling breeze;
    By and by the harvest, and the labor ended,
    We shall come rejoicing, bringing in the sheaves.
  2. Going forth with weeping, sowing for the Master,
    Though the loss sustained our spirit often grieves;
    When our weeping’s over, He will bid us welcome,
    We shall come rejoicing, bringing in the sheaves.

Prayer of Thanksgiving

God, we give you thanks for the abundance you provide.  Sometimes we’re not eager to do the planting, or to offer what we have, but over and over again you help us know we will reap at harvest time if we do not give up.  So receive these gifts and all our good intentions.  Help us continue to work, share, sow… for the good of all, especially within this family of faith.   AMEN


Invitation to Communion 

Today, what do you see before you?  A simple table, filled with trays?

Today, I invite you to look with eyes of faith, and see!  Recognize this as a table of God’s new creation.
For this table isn’t just 4 feet long; it stretches around the globe.
It isn’t simply crackers and juice, but is a feast for the multitudes.
This is not something fixed in time, but puts us in the midst of past-present-future.

For God is at work in us, bringing us to recognize the harvest God intends for all of creation: peace, mercy, abundance!

As you receive these gifts, may you drink in the Spirit so our eyes can perceive more than what we can touch:  the harvest of wholeness, the true gift of Shalom.