…Grant us wisdom, grant us courage, for the facing of this hour.
Harry Emerson Fosdick, 1930
Preparation for worship
Sit in a relaxed position. Take a slow, deep breath (or 2 or 3 or as many as needed) until you feel your body, mind, and soul begin to relax and rest in the Spirit. Take time to reflect as you move through this time of worship…
Opening Sentences Isaiah 2:3
Many peoples shall come and say:
Come, let us go up to the mountain of the Lord,
to the house of the God of Jacob;
that we may learn God’s ways
and walk in God’s paths.
Eternal God, holy and faithful, what can we give in return for our life? Teach us to take up the cross of Christ with grateful hearts and humble spirits, offering all for the sake of the gospel, so that we may receive life in fullness; through Christ, who is coming in glory.
Hymn of the Day
I Want Jesus to Walk with Me (Presbyterian Hymnal #363)
Listen and pray along with this inspirational interpretation:
Reading of the Day: Mark 10: 35-45
35 James and John, the sons of Zebedee, came forward to him and said to him, “Teacher, we want you to do for us whatever we ask of you.” 36 And he said to them, “What is it you want me to do for you?” 37 And they said to him, “Grant us to sit, one at your right hand and one at your left, in your glory.” 38 But Jesus said to them, “You do not know what you are asking. Are you able to drink the cup that I drink, or be baptized with the baptism that I am baptized with?” 39 They replied, “We are able.” Then Jesus said to them, “The cup that I drink you will drink; and with the baptism with which I am baptized, you will be baptized; 40 but to sit at my right hand or at my left is not mine to grant, but it is for those for whom it has been prepared.”
41 When the ten heard this, they began to be angry with James and John. 42 So Jesus called them and said to them, “You know that among the Gentiles those whom they recognize as their rulers lord it over them, and their great ones are tyrants over them. 43 But it is not so among you; but whoever wishes to become great among you must be your servant, 44 and whoever wishes to be first among you must be slave of all. 45 For the Son of Man came not to be served but to serve, and to give his life a ransom for many.”
Prayers for self and others
Please pray today for those who are being affected by COVID 19, including Kay and Mark Sabala’s friend in California who has the virus, Mark Sabala as he works as a nurse at Willowbrook Hospital, Becky’s friend Scott and his family, Debbi’s daughter Linda and her family in New Jersey, and their neighbors, four of whom are sick with the virus. We pray for teachers, parents, and church leaders, who are navigating new waters in the midst of anxiety. As we hear of more friends who are directly affected, or who are working in high risk places, we will list them here.
Use this time to lift your joys, concerns, and hopes to God.
May the God of love, who shared his love, strengthen us in our love for others.
May the Son who shared his life grant us grace, that we might share our life.
And may the Holy Spirit dwelling in us empower us to be only and always for others. Amen.
Becky Downs, pastor of John Knox, started writing daily prayers for the congregation at the beginning of the COVID pandemic, to encourage the congregation in their faith during their time of separation from each other.