Oct 7, 2015

Prayer of Confession: Spoiled Children

Here’s a prayer of confession from Jan Berry’s collection of prayers, Bread of Tomorrow. It came to mind when working through the gospel reading for Proper 23B:

“But Jesus said to them again, 
‘Children, how hard it is to enter the kingdom of God!
It is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle
than for someone who is rich to enter the kingdom of God.’” Mark 10:24-25

Prayer of Confession

God, You heap your love upon us
like a parent providing for a family’s needs,
embracing a child with tenderness.

Forgive us
when, like spoiled children,
we treat Your generosity as our right,
or hug it possessively to ourselves.

Give us enough trust to live secure in Your love
and to share it freely with others
in open-handed confidence
that Your grace will never run out.  Amen.

~ Copyright © Jan Berry, England, in Bread of Tomorrow: Prayer for the Church Year, ed. Janet Morley (Maryknoll, New York: Orbis Books, 1992), p. 147. Used by permission.

Opening Prayer of Thanksgiving: Psalm 65

Here’s a responsive opening prayer of thanksgiving from the Arthur Rank Centre.

Opening Prayer
(Inspired by Psalm 65)

God of life and love
We rejoice in your abundant gifts
God of all peoples and all places
We celebrate your generosity and grace
God of the earth and the heavens
We praise you for your provision
You visit the earth and water it
Softening it with showers and blessing its growth
You make springs gush forth in the valleys
From your lofty abode you water the mountains
God of life and love
We bless your holy name

~ posted on Arthur Rank Centre Harvest Festival Resources 2010 http://www.arthurrankcentre.org.uk/worship-resources/item/2802-harvest-festival-resources-2010

Call to Worship: We Gather to Give Thanks

Call To Worship:  We Gather to Give Thanks

Here’s a call to worship inspired by Psalm 138.  It was posted on the Lectionary Sermons Archive.

Call to Worship
(inspired by Psalm 138)

We gather to give thanks to You, O Lord,
with all our heart!
We will sing Your praises before all creation,
and rejoice in Your steadfast love!
You have created us O Lord, and made us for Yourself.
In You we become everything You have made us to be!

~ posted on the Lectionary Sermons Archives http://www.lectionarysermons.com/ARCH-W.html

Oct 5, 2015

Harvest Prayer of Confession

Here’s a prayer of confession from the Farming Community Network, suitable for a time of harvest or thanksgiving celebrations.

Prayer of Confession during Harvest

As we celebrate your goodness so we confront our own sin,
our greed and insensitivity,
our failure to appreciate what we have
and the opportunities you have given,
our readiness to complain,
our unwillingness to praise.
Father, forgive and renew us.

Food taken for granted,
work unappreciated and poorly rewarded;
self-centred blindness to other’s needs.
Deliberate deafness to the cries of the hungry,
coldness of heart to those deprived of affection,
Father, forgive and renew us.

A landscape threatened and an economy at risk;
a countryside disheartened,
its communities uncertain and confused,
its isolation and exclusion ignored.
Father, forgive and renew us.

May our sins be forgiven,
our blindness, deafness and coldness of heart be healed.
May your renewing spirit rest on us
and fill our nation with your love and hope.
In Jesus’ name. Amen

~ posted in Resources for the Celebration of Harvest Festival,” from the Farming Community Network.  http://fcn.ehclients.com/assets/Resources_for_the_Celebration_of_Harvest_Festival.pdf

Sep 29, 2015

Thanksgiving Call to Worship: Grateful Praise

Here’s a call to worship for Thanksgiving written by David Inglis.  It uses the sung refrain from the hymn, For the Beauty of the Earth as a congregational response.

Call to Worship for Thanksgiving:
Grateful Praise

God created the heavens,
star-spattered with beauty,
and the earth, teeming with life.
And God set us on the Earth,
alive and wide-eyed,
able to see and hear,
feel and taste life's beauty,
able to dream and plan,
create and build out of the richness of the earth.
Lord of all to thee we raise
this our hymn of grateful praise!

God gave us families to love us,
teachers to teach us,
elders to guide us,
and leaders to inspire us.
God gave us His Son
to save us from the path of destruction and sin,
and to be a strengthening presence
in our trials and temptations.
Lord of all to thee we raise
this our hymn of grateful praise!

Every good thing that fills our souls with gladness
and our lives with light
is a gift from God.
We have been entrusted with unfathomable riches.
For this, let us come before God
in thanksgiving and grateful praise.
Lord of all to thee we raise
this our hymn of grateful praise!

~ written by David Inglis, Senior Pastor at the Henrietta United Church of Christ in Henrietta, New York.  http://www.henriettaucc.org/PastorsPage/CallsToWorship.shtml