Rise

Rise and shine like the sun;
For the Son shines in you.
Rise and face this new day;
Knowing you don’t face it alone.
Rise and be bold;
For the Lord your is Rock.
Rise and be confident;
For the Lord is your refuge.
Rise and praise Him;
For God almighty has redeemed you.
Rise and worship Him;
For He is worthy.
Rise and be forgiven;
For Jesus has died for you.
Rise and rise again;
For Jesus lives and so shall you, forever.
Rise and shine;
For this is indeed a glorious day.

The Pastor-|—

Worthy Lives

It is right and salutary
that we should at all times
and in all places
gives thanks and praise to You,
oh God,
for You alone are worthy of all worship and honor and glory.
You gave Your only Son to die that we might live;
people who are indeed unworthy.
But because You alone are worthy,
may we live lives that are worthy of You;
lives that shine the light of Your love.
May Your worth be evident in and through us
that Your glory may be know to all.
And so with the Church on earth and the hosts of heaven
we join in singing Your unending praise…

The Pastor -|—

Empower Me

Empower me,
oh God,
to live a life worthy of the Gospel.
Where there is hurt, use me to provide comfort.
Where there is conflict, use me to bring reconciliation.
Where there is hatred, use me to show love.
Where there is a need, use me to bless.
Holy God,
Creator and Redeemer,
may Your grace and lover spur me to stay in the game;
not becoming complacent,
and may I have the tenacity to never stop living for You.
All glory be unto You,
Oh God,
through Christ Jesus my Lord.
Amen.

The Pastor -|—

Partnership in the Gospel

[Prayer of the Day for Sun, Sept 16, 2018, based on the preaching text from Phil. 1:3-11]

Holy God,
Through Your grace
You have called us to salvation
through faith in Jesus Christ.
Through Your Holy Spirit
You empower us to serve in Your kingdom.
Through Your Son, Jesus Christ,
You knit us together as a holy Church.
May we, together, work to advance the Gospel;
lifting one another up
and bearing one another’s burdens.
To You be the glory, through Jesus Christ our Lord.
Amen.

The Pastor -|–

You Ways and Your Thoughts

Holy God,
the prophet Isaiah records Your words,
For my thoughts are not your thoughts,
neither are your ways my ways,
declares the LORD.
For as the heavens are higher than the earth,
so are my ways higher than your ways
and my thoughts than your thoughts.”
Those words can be frustrating to sinners
who want what we want,
but I also take great comfort
that when everything seems out of control
and doesn’t make sense,
You really are in control.
And so, I come before You this morning in faith.
My life is in Your hands.
I don’t understand many things,
(and forgive me when I claim I do),
but You are God and thus I trust in You.
Mold me and shape me.
Renew me and remake me.
Guide me and lead me.
Transform me so that
my thoughts become Your thoughts,
and You ways become my ways.
I pray this through my Lord and Savior,
Jesus Christ,
Amen.

The Pastor -|—

A Worship Prayer

Holy God,
We gather as fallen people;
defiled and lost;
crying out to You as a child runs to their loving parent seeking consolation.
We gather as redeemed people,
knowing from which we have been plucked;
the snare of death.
We gather as a worshiping people;
joyful and thankful
that You are God.
And so,
We adore You and praise You.
We worship You and glorify You;
for You are more than worthy.
Hear our cries;
receive our prayer;
accept our worship,
oh God, our Father;
Rock and redeemer.
Amen.

The Pastor -|—

One of those days

Yesterday I had one of those days. For some reason my mind was not focused; running in different directions. I felt like a little kid with an attention span of a…

[look, squirrel]

…you get my point right?

I did feel focused during the sermon [praise be to God] but everything else was just plain flat.

[look, another squirrel]

Yup, that was pretty much it.

When we, mercifully, got to the benediction my mind wandered again. I walked out from behind the altar, raised my hands to give the benediction I have been giving for over 14 years. I opened my mouth…and nothing. I proceeded to fumble for words for a moment and eventually spit out something that resembled a benediction; trying my best to make it sound that I changed it up on purpose. I think I failed on that as well. Thankfully, no one said anything, but now, if they are reading this, my secret is out.

This morning did not go much better. I dropped my kids off at their “Animal Camp” hosted by their preschool. On my way to work I was talking to my wife, saying “Miss Kristen and the lady who drives the big truck, are leading this week“. My wife laughed at me because I could not remember the name of the other teacher.

[Brenda is her name. I eventually did remember that.]

The only saving grace this morning is that my 9:30 appointment with some perspective new members called to reschedule due to illness. I hate to say this but that is probably a good thing. I probably would have sent them running to another church.

God, I need a brain reboot this morning.

[LOOK, SQUIRREL!]

Yup, definitely a reboot.

The Pastor -|—