Worship at Home

Worship for 27th September 2020

The best of all is God is with us

To listen to the sermon and a hymn dial

01604 266000.

Sunday 27th September 10:30 AM

(or whenever you wish)

This week’s message has been prepared by Carolyn Lawrence, Vice President of Methodist Conference.

This short act of worship is for use from home.  Pause to settle yourself in God’s presence, knowing that other people are sharing in worship with you.

Download the Family Activities

Take a few quiet moments to focus on God.

Call to Worship: Isaiah 43:18-19

Do not remember the former things,
or consider the things of old.
I am about to do a new thing;
now it springs forth, do you not perceive it?

Hymn: StF 471 Lord, I come to you

Lord, I come to you,
Let my heart be changed, renewed,
Flowing from the grace
That I found in You.
And Lord, I’ve come to know
The weaknesses I see in me
Will be stripped away
By the power of Your love.

Hold me close,
Let Your love surround me.
Bring me near, draw me to Your side.
And as I wait
I’ll rise up like the eagle,
And I will soar with You,
Your Spirit leads me on
In the power of Your love.

Lord, unveil my eyes,
Let me see You face to face,
The knowledge of Your love
As You live in me.
Lord, renew my mind
As Your will unfolds in my life,
In living every day
By the power of Your love.

Geoff Bullock.

Copyright © 1992 Word Music/Adm. by CopyCare

Opening Prayers

Lord,  
as we enter your holy presence today, help us to be ready to hear again about your kingdom.
Come, open our hearts and minds
to see the kingdom around us and within us
as we come to worship and praise You,
our living God.
Amen.

Bible Reading

 

18 ‘Forget the former things;
    do not dwell on the past.
19 See, I am doing a new thing!
    Now it springs up; do you not perceive it?
I am making a way in the wilderness
    and streams in the wasteland.
20 The wild animals honour me,
    the jackals and the owls,
because I provide water in the wilderness
    and streams in the wasteland,
to give drink to my people, my chosen,
21     the people I formed for myself
    that they may proclaim my praise.

Holy Bible, New International Version® Anglicized, NIV® Copyright © 1979, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

Pause

Bible Reading

 

Jesus questioned about fasting

33 They said to him, ‘John’s disciples often fast and pray, and so do the disciples of the Pharisees, but yours go on eating and drinking.’

34 Jesus answered, ‘Can you make the friends of the bridegroom fast while he is with them? 35 But the time will come when the bridegroom will be taken from them; in those days they will fast.’

36 He told them this parable: ‘No one tears a piece out of a new garment to patch an old one. Otherwise, they will have torn the new garment, and the patch from the new will not match the old. 37 And no one pours new wine into old wineskins. Otherwise, the new wine will burst the skins; the wine will run out and the wineskins will be ruined. 38 No, new wine must be poured into new wineskins. 39 And no one after drinking old wine wants the new, for they say, “The old is better.”’

Holy Bible, New International Version® Anglicized, NIV® Copyright © 1979, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

Again pause… maybe read it again slowly… what is God saying to you particularly today?

Message from Carolyn Lawrence,
Vice President of Methodist Conference

It’s very easy for us to want to hang on to the past – people often talk about the ‘old days’ and the way things used to be done and some don’t like any kind of change at all! 

Sometimes we hold on to things in our own lives and our church lives that need to be laid down – things that hinder our growth as individuals and as the church.   We need discernment and prayer to know what to lay down and what to carry forward.   Especially as we ease out of the Coronavirus epidemic.

Reflect on what you need to lay down – in your own life…in the life of your church… apathy, idolatry, greed, prejudice, unforgiveness, selfishness, bad habits,
old ways of doing things.

I am about to do a new thing

I have been amazed and encouraged by the innovative ways churches have been engaging with their congregations and communities during the lockdown and since it has eased a bit. 

Despite the loss, confusion, disorientation and bereavement there are many stories of good things – new things that have arisen from this crisis and new ways of being church.

Reflect: Ask the Holy Spirit to show you the new thing that God wants to do in and through you…in your own walk with Jesus, in your church fellowship, amongst your community, in the wider world.

Now it springs forth, do you not perceive it

There have been many seeds sown during this time and it is my prayer that they will begin to spring into life and that we will eventually see the harvest from these seeds. 

It is important for all of us to be looking for the signs of growth and new life around us – whether that be in our own lives, within our families and communities and in our churches. To discern where God is moving in new ways and be bold and courageous. Often we can be too cautious and afraid to move forwards. 

Reflect: What new things are springing forth in your own life and in the life of your church and community…where are their signs of renewal and hope?  Where might God be moving in new and exciting ways and how can you join in?

I will make a way in the wilderness and rivers in the desert

We all go through wilderness and desert experiences in our day to day lives – this could be particularly true for you in recent months. 

Our title for the year reminds us that no matter what we face in our day to day lives, that God is with us – he is concerned about every aspect of our lives and we can talk to God about all the things that have caused us to feel dry, disappointed and desolate. 

We can’t do the work of God on our own but we need the power of the Holy spirit to breathe life and growth into all aspects of our lives and churches. 

Reflect on the parts of your life: work, ministry, relationship with God or others; or in your church life that feel dry, disappointing, difficult…ask Jesus to pour the life-giving water of the Holy Spirit into those dry places and bring renewal and refreshing.

May God help us as we move into this new church year and may we know the truth that ‘The best of all is, God is with us.’

Prayers of Intercession:

Add your own prayers wherever feels right.

Gracious God, thank you that you are always with us.  Help us now by your Spirit as we pray for the Church and for the world in the name of Jesus Christ…

Lord, renew the life and faith of the Church.

Help us live out our unity in Christ, strengthen and empower our witness by your Holy Spirit that we may be faithful in your service,
and the world may be turned to you.

Lord, in your mercy, hear our prayer.

Guide the nations

in the ways of justice, liberty and peace.

Help them to seek the unity and welfare of all people…

Lord, in your mercy, hear our prayer.

Comfort those in sorrow;
heal the sick in body or in mind…
and deliver the oppressed…

Grant us compassion for all who suffer,

Lord, in your mercy, hear our prayer.

Pray for anything else you feel led to…

In the name of Jesus who taught us when we pray to say:

The Lord's Prayer

Please use the version that you prefer

Our Father, who art in heaven,
hallowed be thy Name,
thy kingdom come,
thy will be done,
on earth as it is in heaven.
Give us this day our daily bread.
And forgive us our trespasses,
as we forgive those who trespass against us.
And lead us not into temptation,
but deliver us from evil.
For thine is the kingdom,
the power, and the glory,
for ever and ever.

Amen.

Our Father in heaven,
Hallowed be your name,
Your kingdom come,
Your will be done,
On earth as in heaven.
Give us today our daily bread.
Forgive us our sins
As we forgive those who sin against us.
Save us from the time of trial
And deliver us from evil.
For the kingdom, the power
and the glory are yours
Now and for ever.

Amen.

Hymn: StF 470 Lord, for the years

Lord, for the years Your love has kept and guided,
Urged and inspired us, cheered us on our way,
Sought us and saved us, pardoned and provided:
Lord of the years, we bring our thanks today.

Lord, for that word, the word of life which fires us,
Speaks to our hearts and sets our souls ablaze,
Teaches and trains, rebukes us and inspires us:
Lord of the word, receive Your people’s praise.

Lord, for our world when we disown and doubt him,
Loveless in strength, and comfortless in pain,
Hungry and helpless, lost indeed without You:
Lord of the world, we pray that Christ may reign.

Lord for ourselves; in living power remake us –
Self on the cross and Christ upon the throne,
Past put behind us, for the future take us:
Lord of our lives, to live for Christ alone.

Copyright © 1967 Timothy Dudley-Smith.

A Final Prayer

God of all power,
may the boldness of your Spirit transform us, the gentleness of your Spirit lead us,
and the gifts of your Spirit equip us
to serve and worship you now and always
Amen.

Message from Carolyn Lawrence VP Meth Conf
Service and format by Revd Phil Snelson

Webpage: Paul Deakin