Thou changest not, thy compassions they fail not…
Thomas Chisholm, 1923
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 143:1
Hear my prayer, O Lord;
give ear to my supplications in your faithfulness;
answer me in your righteousness.
Dear Father in heaven, in quietness we come to you and ask you for your Spirit. We ask this especially for the time of waiting still required of us as we hope and strive for light to come into all hearts, for light to shine where there is so much death. We must not despair of our inner life even when life around us rages as if it would suck us down into its whirlpool with no way out. But you will guard us. Watch over us, we pray, also in hours of temptation, so that we may remain under your care. Watch over us so that we have hope and joy in you, assured that your goal for us all is true life from above, a life of resurrection. Amen.
Hymn of the Day – One Bread, One Body (Glory to God #530) Click the link to hear a choral arrangement of this hymn by the St. Louis Jesuits. Listen to it as you pray.
Gospel Reading: Mark 8: 1-10
In those days there was another large crowd with nothing to eat. Jesus called his disciples and told them, 2 “I feel sorry for the crowd because they have been with me for three days and have nothing to eat. 3 If I send them away hungry to their homes, they won’t have enough strength to travel, for some have come a long distance.”
4 His disciples responded, “How can anyone get enough food in this wilderness to satisfy these people?”
5 Jesus asked, “How much bread do you have?”
They said, “Seven loaves.”
6 He told the crowd to sit on the ground. He took the seven loaves, gave thanks, broke them apart, and gave them to his disciples to distribute; and they gave the bread to the crowd. 7 They also had a few fish. He said a blessing over them, then gave them to the disciples to hand out also. 8 They ate until they were full. They collected seven baskets full of leftovers. 9 This was a crowd of about four thousand people! Jesus sent them away, 10 then got into a boat with his disciples and went over to the region of Dalmanutha.
Prayers for self and others
Use this time to lift your joys, concerns, and hopes to God.
May the steadfast love of God, the abundant grace of Jesus Christ, and the abiding presence of the Holy Spirit be with us this day and always. 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.