55B – Sunday 23B

54B - Sunday 22B56B - Sunday 24B
See also my post from 2012, 2018, 2021

PSALM 125 (A version for today)
Trust in the LORD, and be like a mountain;
firm, unshakable, and standing for ever.
Jerusalem is surrounded by mountains;
just so, the LORD surrounds us, now and for ever.
Surely injustice will not continue to rule
over the hopes of those working to put things right;
otherwise they too will become unjust.
Do good, O LORD, to the good,
and to those trying to walk a straight path in their living.
But may the LORD carry off those who lives take winding, devious ways;
together with those doing evil.
Peace be on God’s people.

Those who trust in the LORD are like Mount Zion,
they are like Mount Zion which is immovable, abiding for ever.
Jerusalem has mountains surrounding it,
and the LORD God surrounds God’s people even now, and for all time.
God of the unexpected moment,
you have gathered us by your Spirit
to serve us and renew us, and surround us.
Break in on our world like hearing to the deaf,
sight to the blind, speech to the dumb;
come in your unexpected hour.
Bring form to our chaos, light to our darkness,
and life to our hearts.
Fill us with your expectant Spirit:
and so transform our gathering to your glory,
and perfect our worship for your praise. Amen

PRAYERS OF ADORATION (from Proverbs 22)  AND CONFESSION (from Psalm 125)
Gracious God,
creator and giver of life to all, both rich and poor;
we worship you, LORD God.
Your name is beyond great riches,
By your generosity we are blessed;
we worship you, LORD God.
With manna you sustained your people in the wilderness
and with the bread of life you feed us
in the midst of the adversity and injustice of this world 
Your spirit of compassion is beyond silver and gold;
we worship you, LORD God.
You plead the cause of the poor and oppressed,
give sight to the blind, hearing to the deaf, 
and a song of joy to the speechless.

You create us and accept us as we are, O God:
in the times when we have failed
in our relationship with you and with each other;
in the times when we have passively accepted
injustice done to others;
in the times when we have enjoyed your creativity around us,
but have been afraid to ask for our own healing.

Source of life,
Word of life,
Breath of life,,
raise us from our pain and brokenness;
touch us, heal us and strengthen us,
so that we may live in the wholeness
you desire. Amen.

For use in worship, with acknowledgement. © Jeff Shrowder 2000, 2012.

A CREATIVE MOMENT – James 2:1-10, 14-17
Celebrate the diversity of the outreach, welfare and justice ministries of your denomination or congregation. Around the walls of your worship space arrange pictures/posters depicting some of these. At a focal point in the worship space place a range symbols, e.g. a cup of water, a lighted candle, a loaf of bread. If you can, include a length of barbed wire to symbolise all who are oppressed.

(A prayer to gather the spoken and silent concerns/joys/thanks expressed by the congregation and lead into a more structured Intercession with connection to the lections for the day. Sometimes this prayer borrows lightly from other sources e.g. Uniting in Worship 2 or publications of the Iona Community.)
By your Holy Spirit, O God,
warm the lives of those we name
on our lips and in the silence of our hearts;
celebrate with those open to your abundance;
bring comfort to those among us and around us
who are hurting,
and encouragement to those for whom the light of life
shines less brightly;
in Jesus’ name…
      (The Prayers of the People continue)

Looking for contemporary music and song resources?
Try David MacGregor’s Together to Celebrate
Or metrical psalms? Try Dale A. Schoening’s Sing the Psalms

God is my strong salvation TIS 15
God of all power and truth and grace TIS 567
I’ll praise my maker while I’ve breath, TIS 90
Jesus,lover of my soul TIS 211
Lord we are blind TIS 633
Sent forth by God’s blessing, TIS 531
Your words to me are life and health TIS 430
Proverbs 22:1-2,8-9
God who stretched the spangled heavens TIS 163
Happy are they who walk in God’s wise ways TIS 1
Lord, enthroned in heavenly splendour TIS 520
Made in God’s likeness, moved by the Spirit TIS 671
Where cross the crowded ways of life TIS 608
Psalm 125
Glorious things of you are spoken TIS 446
God is love; let heaven adore him TIS 153
Morning has broken TIS 156
Our God, our help in ages past TIS 47
Safe in the shadow of the Lord TIS 644
James 2:1-10,14-18
All the sleepy should have a place to sleep TIS 697
Father, all-loving, and ruling in majesty TIS 160
Fold to your heart your sister and your brother TIS 587
Forth in your name, O Lord, I go TIS 571
I the Lord of sea and sky TIS 658
In Christ there is no east or west TIS 459
Kneels at the feet of his friends TIS 640
O thou who camest from above TIS 572
Praise and thanksgiving Father we offer TIS 627
Son of God, eternal Saviour TIS 606
Where cross the crowded ways of life TIS 608
Mark 7:24-37
Father of mercy, God of consolation TIS 472
God of mercy, God of grace TIS 452
If we will trust in God to guide us TIS 554
O bless the Lord, my soul TIS 64
O Christ the healer, we have come TIS 638
O for a thousand tongues to sing TIS 210
What God ordains is always good TIS 109
Where there is charity and love TIS 434
You satisfy the hungry heart TIS 539

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