The peace of Christ be with you!
This week we had a small group for chapel. It was a really busy and exhausting day and many of our elders were very tired by the time chapel service began. But we continued on and still had a wonderful time worshipping.
After giving a welcome I offered this prayer as we began:
From the time you fashioned the heavens and the earth
from a formless void, O God,
your creative energy has done marvelous works,
all around us.
May your creative Spirit
be at work in our hearts and minds today
as we worship you and, always,
as we strive to live in obedience to your will. Amen.
David Hunt played a wonderful prelude but many of our elders were not too quick to identify the piece as quickly as they did the week before. During the prelude I encouraged them to read 1 John 3:1, 23-24 as their preparation for worship.
What marvelous love the Father has extended to us! Just look at it—we’re called children of God! That’s who we really are. But that’s also why the world doesn’t recognize us or take us seriously, because it has no idea who he is or what he’s up to. And friends, once that’s taken care of and we’re no longer accusing or condemning ourselves, we’re bold and free before God! We’re able to stretch our hands out and receive what we asked for because we’re doing what he said, doing what pleases him. Again, this is God’s command: to believe in his personally named Son, Jesus Christ. He told us to love each other, in line with the original command. As we keep his commands, we live deeply and surely in him, and he lives in us. And this is how we experience his deep and abiding presence in us: by the Spirit he gave us.
Call to Worship
Leader: Praise to God our Creator, source of our being and wellspring of life.
People: Praise to God our Liberator, who sets us free and gives us hope.
Leader: Praise to God the Word, love made flesh to dwell among us.
People: Praise to Jesus the Christ, who feeds the hungry and shows us the Way.
Leader: Praise to God the Spirit, fiery light and rushing wind.
People: Praise to the Holy Spirit, who inspires, challenges, comforts, and sustains us.
Leader: Come let us worship the Earth-maker, the Pain-bearer, and the Life-giver—
People: Let us worship God!
We began our singing today with “Holy, Holy, Holy.” Elder Reajean Grubb read our lesson from the psalms. And we then sang the beautiful and simple chorus, “Glorify Thy Name.”
We next had a time of prayer in which we had many special prayer requests. One our elders cried saying he needed our prayers and loved us so much. He was worried about a procedure that he was having the next day. His anxiety was a prominent part of our petitions that day.
Our new testament lesson was from 2 Corinthians 13:11-13 and was read by elder Joy Hammers. Our hymn of fellowship was “This Is My Father’s World” and the tile of my sermon was God’s Creation, the text being Genesis 1:1-2, 4.
We ended our time of worship with a rousing acapella rendition of “I Saw the Light.”
I wandered so aimless life filled with sin
I wouldn’t let my dear savior in
Then Jesus came like a stranger in the night
Praise the Lord I saw the light.
I saw the light I saw the light
No more darkness no more night
Now I’m so happy no sorrow in sight
Praise the Lord I saw the light.