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Sunday
Jan212018

Call to Worship - January 21, 2018

The world is filled with uncertainties and anxieties, as we have observed in matters political and meteorological this past week. In the midst of it, we wonder where we are headed. Wherever it is, we trust that God goes with us on the journey. Therefore we gather to worship Him, to give Him thanks, and to praise Him for His care of us even when our care for one another seems limited or frazzled. Let us join together to praise God, who always is beside us, and never abandons us.

 

Pastoral Prayer

 

Loving God, we are grateful to Thee that we can approach Thee when we feel deflated and defeated. Once again our political leaders have failed us, blaming one another without appearing willing to accept any blame themselves. Grant to all of them wisdom, courage, and fortitude, and especially the latter virtue. We pray for the leading of Thy spirit in the polarization which increasingly characterizes our nation. Save ourselves from ourselves, O God. May our zeal to do battle with one another be transformed into zeal to work more amicably and productively with one another, for Thy sake as well as for our own sake.

 

We pray for people whose lives have been disrupted by severe weather, both north and south of the equator. Grant us a greater degree of empathy with those who suffer so that we may more willingly express our concern for their suffering. We pray for those whose vocation it is to assist people in need on a daily basis: medical personnel, social workers, trained professionals, and others whose occupation is doing good for others. May they feel Thy support and strength in what they seek to do.

 

We confess the ways in which we personally have failed other people: by doing or saying hurtful things; by ignoring glaring needs around us when we choose to look the other way; by giving up on people when others have not given up on us. Grant us clarity of thought and action in our daily lives, so that we may truly do what we say we believe. These things we ask in the name of Jesus, whose life was constantly poured out on behalf of the least, the last, and the lost. Now we pray as Jesus taught us, saying, Our Father….

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