CALL TO WORSHIP
[One] The Lord is my shepherd; there is nothing I lack.
[All] Even when I walk through a dark valley, I fear no harm for you re at my side.
[One] Goodness and love are with me all the days of my life.
[All] Goodness and love are with me all the days of my life.
(adapted from Ps 23, NAB)
OPENING PRAYER (unison)
Eternal love, holy beyond our sense of purity, mighty beyond our sense of power, merciful beyond our sense of compassion, we adore you. In you alone is found joy and peace and abundant life. As we worship you this morning widen our horizons, deepen our understanding, and carry us beyond our immediate concerns. Amen.
(N. Dixon, adapted)
HYMN "God Is My Shepherd"
CHORAL CALL TO PRAYER
PRAYER OF CONFESSION (unison)
God of all mercy, give us grace to make a fresh start today. We know we have not loved you with our whole heart and mind, nor have we loved our neighbor as ourselves.
As we hope to be forgiven, teach us also to forgive; and lead us forward in a new life where neither self-centeredness nor apathy have a part; in the name of Jesus we pray. Amen.
(Book of Common Order, Church of Scotland, adapted)
WORDS OF ASSURANCE
PASSING OF THE PEACE OF CHRIST
TIME WITH OUR YOUNG PEOPLE
Karl read a version of the 23rd Psalm -- from Today's English Good News
SCRIPTURE READING Acts 2:42-47; 1 Peter 2:19-25
SCRIPTURE READING John 3:16-21
Denis talked about how he came to be here and why this is his church home.
AFFIRMATION OF FAITH
United Church of Christ Statement of Faith in the Form of a Doxology
HYMN "Spirit of Love" (originally titled "Weaver Spirit" -- this feels familiar from First Churches Northampton)
PRAYERS OF THE PEOPLE
Liz lifted up Mike's sister and brother-in-law. Last week SarahG had lifted up Mike and his family. I'm sad that he hasn't been at church the past couple weeks, but glad that people remember him Joys and Concerns.
FOCUS ON MISSION
Paul said that as we move into spring, he's been thinking a lot about life and death. As winter passes away, he reflects on the people we have left behind. During winter, he's too focused on staying warm/getting in out of the cold.
I think it was in talking about what makes a good church that he listed three things: resilience, care, creativity.
SarahG said that in her Luke class this week, the professor(?) said, "Heaven only costs as much as you have."
PRAYER OF DEDICATION (unison)
Generous God, we offer with joy and thanksgiving what you have first given us---our selves, our time, and our possessions---signs of your gracious love. Receive them for the sake of him who offered himself for us. Amen.
HYMN "My Shepherd Is the Living God"
RESPONSE "Praise to the Living God" v. 4
Praise to the Living God, around, within, above
Beyond the grasp of human mind, but whom we know as love
In these tumultuous days, so full of hope and strife
May we bear witness to the Way, O Source and Goal of life.
Today's Embodied Spiritual Practices Adult Ed was yoga. I seriously considered it, but I was tired and opted to just head home after Coffee Hour.