Sunday 6th March 2016 – Lent 4/Mothering Sunday

Loving Creator,

You are the parent

who throws open their arms

and holds the creation close

that You might revel in the stories of the adventures,

nurse the hurts,

wipe the tears,

and then thrust each part of all You have made

back into the path set before them.

Recognising inner strengths,

and nibbling fear,

You are the voice

that compels and comforts.

Within the welcome we find this day

we hear Your rejoicing

at the celebration

that takes place in this, our home.

 

In the tentative steps of faith we take,

we do not always embrace the joy of a moment.

Instead we are jealous of the tasks of others,

or overwhelmed by the abilities and skills of those around us.

These are moments when we do not show ourselves at our best,

and fail to welcome Your love and grace

that inspire us to be the best

You invite us to be.

Forgive our foolishness,

and empty words and gestures.

 

Silence

 

Eternal and everlasting Presence,

who always welcomes

even when we have lost our way,

transform our lives

that we may always celebrate Christ in our midst.

Sunday 28th February 2016 – Lent 3C (2)

Opening Prayer

Holy One of Israel,

It is the tenderness and urgency of Your voice

that bring us to this time and place of worship.

When we are thirsty,

You guide us to refreshing waters;

when we are hungry,

You feed our deepest needs;

when the cupboard is bare and the pocket is empty,

You fill up our stores that we may face the future.

Your promise is of an everlasting covenant of love

that taps at the barriers of hurt and harm

we cause or feel.

 

Compassionate Presence,

in the darkness of our hearts

and the jealousy of our thoughts

we cross the line of passion and care for people and the world

and scar with word and thought and action.

We would rather tear down than build up,

and so we unsettle the vulnerable and powerless.

Move us from our impatience and judgement,

and lead us to Your grace

that shows patience and trust

in the activity of living.

 

Merciful Lord,

help us to live as those who are transformed by repentance,

that our lives may glow

with the presence of Christ.

Amen

Sunday 28th February 2016 – Lent 3C

Call to Worship

With thirsty souls and bodies longing for the lifting of spirit

we seek out the Lord.

our Lord

that we might leave the cynicism and emptiness

of the world around

and find an embrace of hope.

In this sanctuary,

in the loftiness of hilltops,

in the solitude of a beach,

in the speckled touch of rainfall,

in the caress of sunshine.

in the whisper of the wind,

and the thunder of the storm,

we have met the glory of the Lord

and know that all encompassing love

to cause our lips

to spill with praise,

and our souls to be filled to bursting.

 

In the long watches of the night,

let us remember the Lord,

who brings us into the shelter of the heavenly shadow

that we may be upheld

in the passions of our lives.

Sunday 8th March 2015 – Lent 3B

A new set of prayers for this week, although no Offertory Prayer.

Call to Worship

The heavens declare the glory of God;

the skies proclaim the work of his hands.

Day after day,

night after night

their silent, visual voice pours forth its knowledge,

reaching out to the ends of the earth.

 

Under the canopy of heaven

we gather to rejoice in the love of the Lord

and for the law written upon our hearts.

He inspires us to joy

as his ways bring light and radiance

to our dealings with creation.

 

The Lord’s words are so precious,

being sweetness to each thought and word.

May the words of our mouths

and the thoughts of our hearts,

bring pleasure to the Lord.

 

 

Prayer of Approach, Confession and Forgiveness

Gracious Lord,

You are a God of love

who seeks out Your creation

that she might be restored to You

and to each other.

With words of law,

You offer indications

of the kind of relationships

You seek between those You love.

With the presence of Christ,

you turned over legalistic tendencies

to focus in each person.

The activity of Your Holy Spirit wraps around human turmoil

to better reflect Your love.

You are to be praised

for the continuing inspiration

You bring to the present and the future

of all life.

 

For all these calls to love,

how often we have failed.

For all the ambition

to show respect,

how quickly we turn to sniping and undermining.

Forgive us for the pain we inflict upon others

as we snarl in word,

swipe with anger,

and kick in ignorance.

Forgive us for the wounds we nurse

as we refuse to let go

of the hurt inflicted by others.

Lord have mercy.

 

Silence

 

Merciful Lord,

You alone bring the peace that settles our hearts.

May we be filled with your love

and sent forth to be bearers of Your hope,

through Jesus Christ, Your Son our Lord.

Amen

 

Prayers of the People

God who seeks us out

and unsettles us,

turn over the tables of our lives

that we might find new ways of being Your people.

We thank You

that Your Holy Spirit speaks to us

in unexpected ways,

inviting us to play our part

in creating the presence of heaven

in the life around us.

 

Here at this table,

Your grace has fed us

and will inspire much from us

in our activities and prayers.

Our hands and voices cannot be settled

when You have tasks for them.

We thank You for the many people of faith

who have played and continue to play

their part in bringing knowledge of Jesus

to the life of others.

For those who have made that knowledge more than a story,

but instead inspired us with a living faith

that allows Christ to be seen

in care offered to others;

in justice that changes lives;

and in hope that offers new ways of being.

 

Turn over the tables of our world,

so that faith may once again shape the life of many

and call people away from selfish ambition

to community spirit.

 

Turn over the tables of indifference,

so that those who are treated unjustly

by political powers and author figures

find voices of support

rise in anger against

poverty, homelessness and bias.

 

Turn over the tables of neglect

ensuring that the hungry are fed,

that children receive education,

that the housebound and afraid are cared for.

 

Turn over our lives,

that we may be those

who live as Christ inspired

and bring Your comfort to our world.

Amen

Sunday 6th April 2014 – Lent 5C (5)

Spirit of God,

who dance in our lives

like the wind that sweeps across

the fields and hills,

we thank You for the invigorating nature of Your presence

as it enlivens us to be Your people.

We praise You for all those

who have allowed Your breath

to steer their lives,

and as they have served You

offered signs of Christ alive

within all they do.

 

Breath of God,

we pray for those whose lives seem empty and lost.

For people who feel that

they only have the bare bones

of the resources that they need

to make it to the dawning of each new day.

 

We pray for those

who today will know what it means to be hungry and thirsty;

for those who will not know a safe home,

a warm bed,

a place to shelter form the storm.

Breath of God sweep amongst creation,

and bring forth fresh possibilities

to help and offer hope.

 

We pray for those

who are who feel their lives are without hope,

because they have lost their job,

or they cannot see their way out of debt,

or they are stuck on a treadmill of existence.

Breath of God,

sweep around the bones of empty lives,

and offer signs of potential and growth.

 

We pray for those

who feel let down by others.

People whose relationships have been torn apart

by lies and deception.

Those who feel pushed to one side

because they do not fit the mould

of husband and wife,

or family.

Breath of God,

sweep away our preconceived notions of how people should live,

and allow us to build the relationships You invite

where people are treated with equity

and all are considered valuable.

Amen.