Sunday 16th March 2014 – Lent 2A – Full Set

Call to Worship

From the safety of our slumber,

the Lord has called us to be here.

When the darkness has clouded our thoughts

and the hopes of tomorrow,

the Lord has led us step by step

from all that clouds us

to encounter the light of his presence.

In the presence of the Maker of heaven and earth

we are assured of His unfailing care and love.

 

Opening Prayer

Maker of heaven and earth,

You are to be praised for the dawning

of this new day.

You are to be praised

for the sun above our heads,

the rain that brings new life,

the winds that blow through the old

to offer new insight and possibility.

We praise You for the sleep

that rested our imaginations and thoughts

and allowed time for repair

within our bodies and our hearts

While we bring our praise to You

here within this holy place,

may our praise of You be heard

with every footstep we make,

and in every conversation we have.

 

Guardian of our lives,

in our waking thoughts

we are aware that we sometimes find the journey

to Your holy hill difficult.

We struggle to lift our eyes and see Your view

because of the shame and embarrassment

we feel because of things we have said or done,

or even the actions in which we have failed.

At times our feet slip

as long held ideals of justice and peace

do not always shape the way in which we live.

For all our failings

we are sorry,

and seek Your hand to lead us in new ways.

 

Silence

 

Lord of highest heaven,

forgiveness is offered to us all

as the Good News of your Son Jesus Christ

shapes us for each day

and places Your love at the centre of our lives.

AMEN.

 

Offering and Dedication

Lord,

You have blessed us in our darkness

with the light of Your presence.

Bathing in Your light

we view ourselves and our world

and discover the touch of Your hand

upon who we are, the journey passage we have made,

and all we hope for the future.

In our thankfulness for Your guiding presence

we give from all we received from You:

in the time we offer

may service of You gift others in their need;

in the skills we share

may your kingdom seep into all of life;

in the giving from our wealth

may the wealth of Your love be shared.

Bless all we give,

and in Your blessing

may others discover Your presence in all of life

Amen.

 

Prayers of the People

God of Abram and of Nicodemus,

we thank You for the times in our lives

when we have been assured of Your companionship

on the journeys that we make.

We thank You for Your patience

as we ask questions to better our understanding

or when we struggle with the all You ask us to do.

We thank You that each of us is different,

and that for some

trusting You even when the answer is uncertain is possible,

while for others

every ’t’ has to be crossed and every ‘i’ dotted

if they are to let go of all that is familiar and trust.

 

Sitting in the dark

of the troubles of the world

we come to You,

Lord of light

that You might shine into the life of the world

offering compassion and hope

across each symptom of our world.

We pray for our own congregation,

and people known to us.

We thank You for the fellowship shared yesterday evening,

as people took a step of faith

to meet You in new ways

and discover You at work in the wider church.

May we be faithful in the choices we make

as we continue to serve You each day.

 

We pray for our Presbytery

as it makes plans for the Crowning event next weekend.

May those taking part

enjoy discovering Your story in the lives of other.

Stir the darkness of lives outside the church

that they might be pricked with curiosity

and encountered to take a step into Your light

as they discover that worship is more than a Sunday activity

but voiced in the care of others;

the cries for justice;

and concern for the world.

 

We pray for those who live in the darkness

of poverty and war.

Remembering the people of the Ukraine

we long for a light in discussions

that allows peace to settle in Crimea.

Remembering the people of Syria,

we hope for light

that brings safety and security to the lives

of communities torn apart by war.

 

We pray for those who live in the darkness

of ill health,

of troubled minds.

Help us to remember those

who cannot control their thoughts and imaginations

as they live with mental illness.

Lift the blinkers from our own eyes

as we fail to recognise

that just because we cannot see the symptoms

does not mean that someone struggle with their living.

May Your light

make us a more compassionate and caring world

where working with our neighbours

is seen as a sign of strength

and not a weakness in our own abilities.

 

Gracious God,

like Abram,

may we rise from prayer and follow You.

Like Nicodemus,

may we walk out of the darkness of our questions

and into the light of Christ’s presence.

AMEN.

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