September 25, 2022

Worship Resources for 
the Center for Faith and Giving

Proper 21C

Jeremiah 32:1-3a, 6-15 

Psalm 91:1-6, 14-16 

1 Timothy 6:6-19
Luke 16:19-31

Call to Worship  (in response to Psalm 91)
(consider using CH#76 or #77 as a choral call to worship, an opening 
                  hymn, or as a sung response to the call to worship below.)

One:  Gather in, all who live in God’s shadow.
Many:  We’ve come to worship the One in whom we trust.
One:  No need to fear, for God is our dwelling place.
Many:  We rejoice in the ways we’re held close,
One:  we are not left to face trouble along.
Many:  So we share our confidence:  God’s faithfulness stands for all time!

Opening Prayer  

Holy are you, God of all life, to whom we turn our hearts.
In the midst of challenges and pain, we reach out to you.
In the delight of abundant blessings, we celebrate your presence.

Thank you for bringing us to worship today.  
Because you never forsake us, and you always hear us, we give you praise.
So shelter us once more.  
Be our refuge in times of fear, our constant protector in difficult days, 
our dwelling place both now and all the days of our lives.  AMEN

Moment for Stewardship  

We so often look to scripture for words of encouragement or comfort.  
It seems few of us look deeply into the words of the Bible for counsel about how to live our lives as daily followers of Jesus, especially if it would mean making big changes.

But occasionally we find a particular text which speaks directly to us.  I had that happen when reading I Timothy 6:17-18 (NRSV), and want to share that today as we prepare to receive our morning offering.

“As for those who in the present age are rich, command them not to be haughty, or to set their hopes on the uncertainty of riches, but rather on God who richly provide us with everything for our enjoyment.  They are to do good, to be rich in good works, generous, and ready to share.”

Friends, that’s US!  How grateful I am to know we have a fine opportunity this very moment to step into alignment with this teaching.

Setting our hopes on God, let us take this time to do good, to be generous, and to share a portion of what we identify as “ours”.

Prayer of Thanksgiving

Merciful God, 

It’s not easy to hear some parts of the teaching of Jesus, especially when we’re directed to let go and share our finances.  

Renew in us a sense of gratitude for Jesus, for the lives he impacted in the flesh and for our lives, which we (at least sometimes) want Jesus to impact on a daily basis.

We pray you will bless these gifts, bless each one who has made a gift, and strengthen us to follow more clearly the Way of Jesus, 

Invitation to Communion  

(taken from p. 70, Re/Membering, by Joseph R. Jeter)

It is not easy to be Christian.  It never has been.  That was a heavy meal Jesus shared with his disciples that night.  He told them he was leaving; he told them he was going to be betrayed – surely the disciples were stunned.  But he did not leave them comfortless.  He gave them this cup and this loaf, not just for remembrance, not just for anticipation, but to ease their present pain.

In the year 1522 the church at Wittenburg was falling apart.      …
Martin Luther stood up, and in the midst of their suffering he offered them the Lord’s Supper.  He spoke to them about the peace a Christian could find in communion, and closed with these words:  “For this bread is a comfort to the sorrowing, and healing for the sick, a life for the dying, a food for the hungry, and rich treasure for all the poor and needy.”

For those of us who are sorrowing, sick, dying, hungry, poor, and needy, he holds out the Eucharist as comfort, healing, life, food, and treasure.  There is a blessing for every need here.  How good it is to come to this table, even if just for a minute, to receive the peace of God that the world of its own accord cannot give.