“Thou fertile earth that day by day unfoldest blessings on your way, O sing ye! Alleluia!”
—-Francis of Assisi, 1225
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 Mark 10:17, 27
How can a mortal receive eternal life?
For God all things are possible.
Prayer William Bright (1824-1901)
you want us to give thanks for all things,
to fear nothing except losing you,
and to lay all our cares on you,
knowing that you care for us.
Protect us from faithless fears and worldly anxieties,
and grant that no clouds in this mortal life
may hide from us the light of your immortal love
shown to us in your Son, Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
Hymn of the Day
Hard Times Come Again No More, by Bob Dylan. Listen and Pray.
Reading of the Day Exodus 14:26-31
26 Then the Lord said to Moses, “Stretch out your hand over the sea, so that the water may come back upon the Egyptians, upon their chariots and chariot drivers.” 27 So Moses stretched out his hand over the sea, and at dawn the sea returned to its normal depth. As the Egyptians fled before it, the Lord tossed the Egyptians into the sea. 28 The waters returned and covered the chariots and the chariot drivers, the entire army of Pharaoh that had followed them into the sea; not one of them remained. 29 But the Israelites walked on dry ground through the sea, the waters forming a wall for them on their right and on their left.
30 Thus the Lord saved Israel that day from the Egyptians; and Israel saw the Egyptians dead on the seashore. 31 Israel saw the great work that the Lord did against the Egyptians. So the people feared the Lord and believed in the Lord and in his servant Moses.
Prayers for self and others
Please pray today for those who are being affected by COVID 19 and by its side effects in our world. Pray for Dr. Marshall Cash, working directly with COVID patients in Shreveport, LA, President Trump and all his associates, and the hundreds more in Houston who are diagnosed positive each day. As we hear of more friends who are directly affected, or who are working in high risk places, we will list them here. Pray today for researchers who work with faithfulness and integrity to develop a vaccine for the virus. Use this time to lift your joys, concerns, and hopes to God.
Like good stewards of the manifold grace of God,
serve one another
with whatever gift each of you has received.
To God be the glory and the power
forever and ever. 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. 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.