November 15, 2020


November 15, 2020


Lectionary Readings

Judges 4:1-7

Psalm 123

I Thessalonians 5:1-11

Matthew 25:14-30

Call to Worship (based on Psalm 90)

Leader: Lord, you have been our dwelling place in all generations.

People: From everlasting to everlasting, you are God.

Leader: For a thousand years in your sight are like yesterday when it is past.

People: From everlasting to everlasting, you are God.

Leader: You have set our iniquities before you, our secrets sins are known to you.

People: From everlasting to everlasting, you are God.

Leader: Teach us to count our days that we my gain a wise heart.

People: From everlasting to everlasting, you are God.


Opening Prayer

Timeless God, when our days speed fleetingly past, you remember us. We pause now in the midst of our busy lives to acknowledge you as the One who gave us this day and every day. May we use it to worship you and serve others, filling our lives and this world with your love. Amen.

Moment for Stewardship

Have you ever refused a compliment? Someone tells you you’re good at something, and you immediately respond demurely, deflecting the praise as if they were talking about someone else. Paul says one of the gifts of the Spirit is encouragement, and yet so many of us won’t let ourselves be encouraged!

The Bible is clear: we all have been given gifts to use. And if the Spirit has given us the gifts, then the gifts must be good ones! Rather than act like we don’t have them, we are called to use them wisely to further God’s work in this world. We shouldn’t do so pridefully, but we also shouldn’t bury them, like the fearful slave in the Matthew passage.

The gifts we have been given to share include the abundance of our resources. When we generously give these to God through our church, God multiplies them for the healing of the nations. Let us come to this time of giving, not with timidity or modesty, but with confidence that the gifts we have are for giving. Let us collect our tithes and offerings.

Prayer of Thanksgiving

Giving God, you have graced us with gifts beyond our abilities and empowered us to use them in service to each other. May the gifts we share today be one of the ways we pledge our obedience, shining your light into this world. We are honored to be the recipients of your generosity; may we reflect that gift today and every day. Amen.

Invitation to Communion

Who knows? That’s a common refrain in our world today. Who knows when we’ll return to normal? Who knows the future of our country’s leadership? Who knows what is going to come next? That mantra echoes the first century church, which also didn’t know a lot of things, including when Jesus would come again. When will it be the day of the Lord? Who knows!

Because of this uncertainty, Paul encourages the Thessalonians to stay awake. Each day when we rise, we are called to be children of the light, keeping our eyes open for ways we can serve the Lord and make his presence real. This meal serves as a wake-up call for us. It’s easy to let our steadfastness lapse in the midst of these unsettling times. It’s tempting to let our schedules or our anxieties take precedence, to lull us into a sense of hopelessness. To this, Paul says, stay awake!

This bread and this cup is the reminder that Christ is already with us, offering us salvation on a daily basis. Through this meal, we are reconnected to each other, answering the call once again to encourage each other and build up one another, ensuring that we all stay awake and aware to Christ’s presence within and among us. Children of the light, you are welcome at this table. Let us share in communion together.