Worship at Home

Worship for 3rd January 2021

Hope in God for the Year Ahead

To listen to the sermon and a hymn dial

01604 266000.

Sunday 3rd January 10:30 AM

(or whenever you wish)

This week’s message has been prepared by Rev Phil Snelson.

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.

You will need to have a Bible to hand, an easier to read version if possible.

Welcome

Hello, wishing you God’s peace and abundant blessing for a Happy New Year.

Great and wonderful are the things
the Lord God has done for us.
The people who walked in darkness
have seen a great light.

Opening Prayer

Glory to God in the highest,
peace to God’s people on earth.

Lord God, heavenly King,
almighty God and Father,
we worship you, we give you thanks,
we praise you for your glory;
your glory that you revealed through Jesus
the Word made human,
the Light of the World.

May we who have discovered this wonder
be true witnesses to your self-giving love
through Jesus Christ our Saviour,
who is alive and reigns with you,
in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
One God, now and for ever, Amen.

STF 15 The Splendour of the King

The splendour of the King,
Clothed in majesty;
Let all the earth rejoice, All the earth rejoice.
He wraps Himself in light,
And darkness tries to hide,
And trembles at His voice,
And trembles at His voice.

How great is our God, sing with me,
How great is our God, and all will see
How great, how great is our God.

And age to age He stands,
And time is in His hands;
Beginning and the end,
Beginning and the end.
The Godhead, three in one,
Father, Spirit, Son, The Lion and the Lamb,
The Lion and the Lamb.

Name above all names, Worthy of all praise;
My heart will sing: How great is our God.
(Repeat)

Bible Reading

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

A Reflection…

The other set reading for today is Ephesians 1 verses 3-14.  I’ve included The Message version of it as part of the reflection because I want to invite you to enter into its sense of God’s wonderful vision, creative passion, purposeful plan to love us, before they even started work on Creation and knowing what it would cost Jesus!  Notice that God is still in control, and his longing to bring us into abundant eternal life will ultimately prevail.

As you read, notice the common themes, with John chapter 1 and let the messages lift your heart.  May I encourage you to look to this coming year with fresh hope and faith in God’s purpose for His world, including you!

3-6 How blessed is God! And what a blessing he is! He’s the Father of our Master, Jesus Christ, and takes us to the high places of blessing in him. Long before he laid down earth’s foundations, he had us in mind, had settled on us as the focus of his love, to be made whole and holy by his love. Long, long ago he decided to adopt us into his family through Jesus Christ. (What pleasure he took in planning this!) He wanted us to enter into the celebration of his lavish gift-giving by the hand of his beloved Son.

7-10 Because of the sacrifice of the Messiah, his blood poured out on the altar of the Cross, we’re a free people—free of penalties and punishments chalked up by all our misdeeds. And not just barely free, either.  Abundantly free!  He thought of everything, provided for everything we could possibly need, letting us in on the plans he took such delight in making. He set it all out before us in Christ, a long-range plan in which everything would be brought together and summed up in him, everything in deepest heaven, everything on planet earth.

11-12 It’s in Christ that we find out who we are and what we are living for.  Long before we first heard of Christ and got our hopes up, he had his eye on us, had designs on us for glorious living, part of the overall purpose he is working out in everything and everyone.

13-14 It’s in Christ that you, once you heard the truth and believed it (this Message of your salvation), found yourselves home free—signed, sealed, and delivered by the Holy Spirit. This signet from God is the first instalment on what’s coming, a reminder that we’ll get everything God has planned for us, a praising and glorious life.

I find this so exciting, that this really is what we are looking forward to, where God is taking you and me, as we trust in, and walk with God, Father, Son and Holy Spirit. 

May I encourage you again, to look to this coming year with fresh hope and faith in God’s purpose for His world, including you!

Glory to God in the highest, and on earth, peace to all in whom he delights.

Time to Pray …

God of all goodness and grace,
help us by your Holy Spirit as we pray.

We give you thanks for being with us over the past year, and offer up to you everything for the year to come.

Renew the life and faith of the Church
strengthen our witness here in the Northampton area and show us how to fit in to your wider Kingdom plans.
May we be faithful in your service
and filled with the Spirit
that people may be turned to you…
Lord in your mercy : hear our prayer

Guide the nations and our leaders this year, that we might take better care with responsibility for this beautiful world you have created; help us as one human race under you to share, those who have with those who don’t, particularly medical supplies to help everyone beat corona virus.
Give all in authority wisdom to know and strength to do what is right…
Lord in your mercy : hear our prayer

We pray your comfort for those in sorrow;
healing for the sick in body or in mind
and for faith, hope, courage and love for them and for all who care for them too.
We ask that you deliver those who are oppressed and, Lord Jesus, that you fill us with your compassion for all who suffer…
Lord in your mercy : hear our prayer

We offer you our thanks and praise for all who have served you faithfully here on earth and especially those who have helped us find and grow in faith in Christ…
May we and all your people share the life and joy of your kingdom;  we offer all our prayers through Jesus Christ our Lord and Saviour. 

Amen.

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.

We conclude our worship with the hymn inspired by Mary’s song of praise to God after the angel had anounced the incredible challenge of bearing God’s Son, and all that lay ahead for her.

Tell out my soul (StF 186)

Tell out, my soul, the greatness of the Lord!
Unnumbered blessings give my spirit voice;
Tender to me the promise of His word;
In God my Saviour shall my heart rejoice.

Tell out, my soul, the greatness of His name!
Make known His might,
the deeds His arm has done;
His mercy sure, from age to age the same;
His holy name—the Lord, the mighty One.

Tell out, my soul, the greatness of His might!
Powers and dominions lay their glory by;
Proud hearts and
stubborn wills are put to flight,
The hungry fed, the humble lifted high.

Tell out, my soul, the glories of His word!
Firm is His promise, and His mercy sure:
Tell out, my soul, the greatness of the Lord
To children’s children and forever more!

Timothy Dudley-Smith.
Copyright © 1961 Timothy Dudley-Smith.

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

Amen

New Year's Message

Romeo’s friend, Bishop Ivan Abrahams, is the Secretary General of the World Methodist Council. He brings us this New Year’s Message.

Worship resources from Methodist Worship
Message & format, Rev Phil Snelson
Northampton Methodist Circuit

Webpage: Paul Deakin