Worship Connection: August 9, 2020

June 30th, 2020

Tenth Sunday after Pentecost

Color: Green
Scripture Readings:
Genesis 37:1-4, 12-28; Psalm 105:1-6, 16-22, 45b; Romans 10:5-15; Matthew 14:22-33. 


Call to Worship #1:
L: Give thanks to the Lord!
P: Sing praise to God’s name!
L: The Lord has done wonderful things for us!
P: The Lord has heaped blessing upon blessing in our lives!
L: Come, sing, shout, and give thanks to God.
P: In all our ways, we will continually thank God forever. AMEN.

Call to Worship #2:
L: Over the turbulent waves in our lives, Jesus calls us.
P: We get so busy watching the waves, we block out Jesus’ call.
L: Look again. Jesus is calling to you.
P: Lord, help us hear your voice.
L: Come, place your trust in Jesus.
P: Lord, forgive our doubts, receive our lives. AMEN.

Call to Worship #3:

 [Using THE FAITH WE SING, p. 2215, “Cares Chorus,” offer the following call to worship as directed.]

L: Jesus is calling you today. Listen! Hear his call in your hearts.
P: We are so troubled, and we don’t know whether we dare to trust in this call.
L: Don’t be afraid. Take the step.
P: But it feels so risky.

Soloist: singing “Cares Chorus”

L: Come, reach out to the Lord; Jesus is reaching out to you.
P: Lord, grasp our hands and our hearts. Heal and strengthen us with your love. AMEN.

Call to Worship #4:
L: Come, place your trust in the Lord.
P: We have been hurt so many times when we have trusted someone.
L: Jesus will not let you down.
P: We want to trust. Lord, help us.
L: Come, this is the time and the place to take the step of faith.
P: Lord, be with us as we reach out to you and to others. AMEN.


Opening Prayer
Lord, we come to you this day, seeking your healing and restoring love. Give us courage to reach out to you in the good and easy times as well as in the times of strain and stress. Open our hearts to receive your message of peace and hope. In Jesus’ Name, we pray. AMEN.

Prayer of Confession
Lord, you know us too well. You know how easy it is for us to come to you and to proclaim loudly of our faith when all is going well. But when the waters get rough and the waves threaten to swamp our little boats, we cry and wail in fear. We are sure that these waves will be the very things that destroy us. Over the wind and the waves you call to us to place our trust in you. That’s not so easy for us. We are so used to getting lots of reassurances and written guarantees of safety. But still you call to us. Help us take our focus off the wind and the waves and place our gaze directly on you. Attune our hearts and our lives to hear your call and to respond in faith. For we offer this prayer in the name of Jesus. AMEN.

Words of Assurance
Don’t be afraid. Jesus is with you at all times. You are healed, forgiven, and loved. Come and live in the love of the Lord. AMEN.

Pastoral Prayer
Life seems to get crazy sometimes. We love the smooth times when all is well, but, O Lord, we have serious problems with wind and waves. We want you to “fill our sails with a lovely breeze that guides our little boats across the glassy sea”; but you know that life isn’t just glassy seas and gentle breezes. Sometimes things get rough. Help us place our trust in you during all these rough times. You call to us to reach out, to take our focus off our own panic and place our trust in your love. Then you ask us to reach out to others with the same kind of love and compassion that you have given to us. Today we have come to you with burdens and cares. Our “seas” are not calm, but you offer to us a lifeline. Be with us. Guide our lives. Give us courage and hope. Strengthen us to truly be your disciples. In Jesus’ Name, we pray. AMEN.


Reader One:

I wish Jesus had come with us. He just wanted to be alone for a while, but I would have felt better if he had just gotten into the boat and come with us.

Reader Two:
I know what you mean. I don’t like it when he’s not here. I think that the water is beginning to get rough, and have you noticed how the wind is beginning to pick up? I’m concerned. All right, I’m scared!

Reader Three:
Just hang on. We can ride out this storm, I think.

 Reader One:
I don’t know. The wind is really getting fierce and the waves are splashing over the boat.

 Reader Two:
We are probably going to sink! Where’s Jesus when you need him?

Reader Three:
I don’t know. I just don’t know.

 Reader One:
What’s that? Look, over there. Do you see it? Is it someone actually coming toward us, walking on the water?

 Reader Two:
You know that’s not possible, not even on the glassy sea. Now, with the waves and the howling wind, you’re seeing things. That will really help save us, won’t it!

Reader Three:
No, I think I see someone also. I think I do. I’m not sure. Maybe my eyes are deceiving me.

Reader One:
Hey! Is that you, Jesus? If it is you, just tell me to come to you and I’ll do it.


 Reader One:
That’s good enough for me. I’ll step over the edge of this boat.

Reader Two:
Are you nuts? You are going to drown! Don’t be an idiot.

Reader Three:
Are you really going to step over the side? Is that really Jesus?

Reader One:
There’s one way to find out. Here I go. I’m coming, Lord.

Don’t be afraid. I’m right here.

 Reader One:
I’m ok, I think. Wow! These waves are big! Oh my God, I am going to drown. Help me, Lord, I’m sinking. I am afraid.

Here, take my hand. You will be okay. Why did you have such little faith? Have you not seen? Do you not believe?

 Reader One:
Forgive me, Lord. I am weak and fearful. Help me be stronger.

 Reader Two:
Lord, forgive my lack of faith! I know of your love and the wondrous ways in which you have healed and restored others. Restore me also through your mercy and grace.

 Reader Three:
I wanted to believe, Lord, but I just wasn’t sure. I was afraid! Please forgive me.

Do not fear. I am with you. I will reach out to you as you encounter all the waves and winds in life. Place your hand in mine.

Neither wind or waves can swamp you! Place your trust in God’s mercy and love. Go into the world in peace, confident of God’s presence and love for all creation. AMEN.


The traditional color for this Sunday is: GREEN

[Note: Although the traditional color is green, I thought it would be interesting to create a different effect. The fabric I have suggested can often be found in fabric stores, near the suit lining material. It is generally inexpensive. If you cannot find blue/green, focus on a steely blue (blue/gray). This fabric should be light enough to “float” when wind is aimed at it. You may want to put small rocks on the worship center so that the fabric is not blown completely off the center. This setting will require some practice runs before being displayed in worship. This can be a very dramatic presentation for this worship event.]

Place a riser in front of the worship center. This riser should be about a foot lower than the surface of the worship center.

Cover the entire worship center in blue/green silky material (like suit lining or some kind of silky material that will “flutter and ripple” with a breeze blowing on it).

No candles are necessary for this setting.

No flowers and plants are necessary for this setting.

Place a small replica of a wooden boat, like a rowboat, on the riser in front of the worship center. This wooden boat should be at least 18”-24” in length, so that it can be easily seen from the back of the sanctuary or worship area. Make sure that the boat is weighted so that the wind from the fans does not blow it off the worship center. It may rock slightly. Some rocks may be placed at the base of the worship center to anchor the fabric.

Place one or two small fans off to the side of the worship center so that they are blowing on the fabric, creating a “wave” effect.

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