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Sunday
Aug112019

Call to Worship – August 11, 2019

Sometimes when we worship, we do so with less than pure motives or righteous thoughts.  We look around, and we say, Why is he here, and who let her in?  I know him, I am familiar with her, and I know things about them which should keep them from ever darkening these sacred doors.  But the same is true about us with respect to them; they know us, and they wonder about us.  But all of us are children of God, created in His own image, and God welcomes all of us.  Therefore let us, with chastened confidence, worship God.

 

Pastoral Prayer

 

            Loving God, Thou hast created us in Thine image, and for that we express both deep gratitude and profound mystification.  We are truly grateful for the honor, but on the basis of observing one another and also ourselves, we question whether we are worthy of it.  Nonetheless, we ask Thee to forgive all those things we have done which muddle Thine image within us, and we ask Thee to help us more effectively to reflect Thee to others around us.

 

            We pray for people who are hard pressed even to know what is good or right or proper, let alone how to do it.  We remember those who were not taught righteousness as children or youth, those who have fallen in with the wrong crowd as adults, or those who willfully and knowingly have chosen evil rather than good.  We pray particularly for soldiers involved in any of the wars raging around the world who feel little or no support from those they presumably are representing on the battlefield, or who must make instantaneous moral choices which may have disastrous consequences, or who are forced to follow orders they believe are seriously flawed or misguided.  Lord God, uphold all Thy children who struggle to discern the right when the right seems almost impossible for them to discern.

 

            We pray for all among us who are currently bearing heavy burdens of any sort: illness, loneliness, sorrow, grief, pain, or deep spiritual uncertainty.  Grant power to the weak, hope to those in despair, and trust to those for whom life and the entire world have become foreign and menacing.  Those of us who feel few or none of these burdens thank Thee for the remarkable good fortune which is ours.  We also ask Thee to use us to bring comfort and solace to those who are in deep distress.  All these things we pray in the name of him who made it his life’s purpose to bear the burdens of others, Jesus Christ our Lord.  Now together we pray as he taught us, saying, Our Father….

 

 

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