September 1, 2019

September 1, 2019

Worship Resources for
the Center for Faith and Giving

Proper 17

Jeremiah 2:4-13 

 Psalm 81:1, 10-16 

 Hebrews 13:1-8, 15-16 

Luke 14:1, 7-14


Call to Worship  (from Psalm 81)
One:  Sing aloud to God, our strength!
Many:  We’ll shout for joy to the God of all creation.
One:  For THIS God yearns to feed all people,
Many:  THIS God wants to satisfy our hunger.
One:   So we gather to listen, to hear the voice of the One who saves.
Many:  Together, we open our ears and offer our hearts

Opening Prayer

Holy One, we’re in this place because you continue to hear our prayers.  We’ve come together to stand before you, to receive all you willingly offer.
We don’t always listen carefully, but today, help us tune our minds to the channel of your love, that we might align our lives to you and delight in 4 G, 5 G, 10 G reception!  AMEN

Moment for Stewardship 

Jesus has a disconcerting way of turning our common life understanding completely upside down! Even when he’s in the home of a community leader, eating as a guest, he works to re-order the norms of hospitality.

That works when we’re thinking about finances, too.  Our common understanding tells us what we earn, or have been given, belongs to us. Jesus reminds us we are “stewards”, handling resources which actually belong to God.

The challenge is for us to “steward” all in our safe-keeping in ways which build up God’s Realm, not to build up our own nest egg.

So, week by week, we come to worship and have opportunity to freely give, not to our rich neighbor or friends, but to “the poor, the crippled, the lame and the blind” (that is, to those suffering).  As we share our gifts today, remember what a blessing we receive as we use this money to reach out through _______________  (name your particular ways of responding to the needs of those who you reach as “neighbors in need”).

Prayer of Thanksgiving

God of mercy, it’s not always easy to find our way in the upside down world which Jesus offers. Thank you for this opportunity to deliberately decide for Jesus, for compassion, for your Realm.  Help us eagerly anticipate ways in which we can show YOUR love not only today, but every day.  AMEN

Invitation to Communion 

In the social world of Jesus’ time, big community meals often took place around a wedding or a funeral. I can imagine it might be like an open wedding reception in our community, where the tables are set but no place cards exist.  Jesus warns, however, about the embarrassment it would be to boldly walk in and sit at the head table, only to be asked to move.

Gratefully, at this Table, here, we are all welcome.  There is a place for each one.  No embarrassment, no disgrace; you are a guest of the great Shepherd! Our host, Jesus, invites YOU to share in this feast.