The one eternal God, whom heaven and earth adore, the God who was, and is, and shall be evermore.
—-Martin Rinkert, 1636
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 Psalm 37: 5-6
Commit your way to the Lord;
trust in God, who will deliver you.
Your salvation will shine like light;
your redemption, like the noonday sun.
Prayer from the 1929 Scottish prayer book (Anglican)
Almighty and ever-living God,
ruler of all things in heaven and earth,
hear our prayers for this congregation.
Stregthen the faithful,
arouse the careless,
and restore the penitent.
Grant us all things necessary for our common life,
and bring us all to be of one heart and mind
within your holy church;
through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
Hymn of the Day
“The Greatest Gift”, by Sufjan Stevens. Listen as you pray.
Reading of the Day: Matthew 7: 24-29
24 “Everyone then who hears these words of mine and acts on them will be like a wise man who built his house on rock. 25 The rain fell, the floods came, and the winds blew and beat on that house, but it did not fall, because it had been founded on rock. 26 And everyone who hears these words of mine and does not act on them will be like a foolish man who built his house on sand. 27 The rain fell, and the floods came, and the winds blew and beat against that house, and it fell—and great was its fall!”
28 Now when Jesus had finished saying these things, the crowds were astounded at his teaching, 29 for he taught them as one having authority, and not as their scribes.
Prayers for self and others
Please pray today for those who are being affected by COVID 19, including Mark Sabala and Marcy Szeliga in their work as nurses, Linda and Mario Berrios and their family, Debbi’s neighbors and all others who are out of work, Star Sims’ family and Donna Ardell’s family, as they grieve the loss of their loved ones, and for Connie’s Aunt Bonnie and her two cousins— Bonnie is hospitalized with the virus. Please pray for all who all who mourn, that they would be comforted. 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.
The Lord bless you and keep you
in your going out
and your coming in
from this time on
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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. The daily prayers were posted throughout the year. You might want to choose one a day to read, and modify the specific prayers for self and others to fit your life today.