Worship Elements: September 15, 2019

July 27th, 2019

14th Sunday after Pentecost

COLOR: Green
SCRIPTURE READINGS: Jeremiah 4:11-12, 22-28; Psalm 14:1-7; 1 Timothy 1:12-17; Luke 15:1-10

INVITATION AND GATHERING

Call to Worship (Psalm 14, 1 Timothy 1)

Fools say in their hearts, “There is no God.”
We proclaim that God’s presence is real
and alive and thriving!
Evildoers declare through their actions,
“We go through life alone.”
But we see God’s grace, faithfulness,
and steadfast love in our lives
and in the world around us.
Praise be to God!

Opening Prayer (Jeremiah 4, Luke 15)

God of abundant grace,
may your Holy Spirit be with us now
as we worship you this day.
Open our eyes to truly see one another,
that we might discover your presence
in the smile of a neighbor.
Open our ears to the needs of the world,
that we might hear your wisdom
in the words spoken around us.
And open our hearts to your grace and love,
that we might find guidance
and strength for the journey,
for ourselves and for one another. Amen.

PROCLAMATION AND RESPONSE

Prayer of Confession (Jeremiah 4, 1 Timothy 1)

Gracious and loving God,
we find it difficult at times
to place our trust in you.
Too often we look at the world,
and see only violence, pain, destruction,
and signs of hopelessness and despair.
Too often we rely on our own strength,
our own plans, our own devices,
rather than trusting in your hand to hold us,
your love to sustain us,
and your wisdom to see us through.
Forgive us, Holy One.
Help us turn to you when we are lost,
that we might find our way home.
Help us navigate the treacherous waters of this world,
that we might experience your abundant grace,
mercy, and love.
Help us put our trust in you,
that the faith and love that are in Christ Jesus
may shine in our lives for all to see. Amen.

Words of Assurance (Luke 15:7)

Jesus said, “there will be more joy in heaven
over one sinner who repents than over ninety-nine
righteous persons who need no repentance.”
My friends, experience God’s forgiveness and joy—
gifts that leads to new life!

Words of Assurance 

Caring Lord, like Paul who writes to Timothy, like the sheep who wanders away from the care and guidance of his shepherd, we have all been lost. We thank you that you do not leave us in that state but pursue us out of your compelling love and your sense of justice. Grant us a measure of participation in your love and justice that we may pursue all things lost with that same sense of urgency. In Christ’s name we pray, amen. (Scott W. Bullard)

Passing the Peace of Christ (1 Timothy 1)

Like a waterfall that descends down the mountain, open
your hearts to receive God’s faith and love, as they flow
into our lives through Jesus the Christ. Turn and share this
abundance with one another!

Introduction to the Word (1 Timothy 1)

May the words that are spoken,
and the reflections of our hearts,
be worthy of your grace, O God,
to whom all honor and glory is given
now and forever more. Amen.
Response to the Word (Jeremiah 4, Luke 15)
God of love and mercy,
may the truth you offer
stay with us when we leave this place;
may all that is lost in our lives,
be found through your Spirit;
may the brokenness of this world
be healed and turned to love and hope;
and may we strive to be your faithful disciples
as the body of Christ. Amen.

Pastoral Prayer

Loving God, remind us that we are here because you invite us, seek us, come to us, and embrace us. We are here because as a shepherd seeks a lost sheep, you seek us when we are lost. As a woman searches for a lost coin, you rejoice when we are found. Teach us to give thanks. Amen. (Brett Younger)

THANKSGIVING AND COMMUNION

Invitation to the Offering (1 Timothy 1)

Brothers and sisters in Christ, we have received much from God—grace, mercy, abundance, the love of Christ, and the gift of life itself. In our worship, we praise God and give God thanks for these gifts. Let us now offer what we can as a way of saying, “Thank you.” In gratitude for God’s generosity, let us share God’s abundance with one another.

Offering Prayer (1 Timothy 1)

Gracious and loving God,
we thank you for these gifts
and ask that they be used
to help the needy in our community
and throughout the world.
As we offer you these gifts,
we offer ourselves as well,
that together we might transform the world
with your grace and love. Amen.

SENDING FORTH

Benediction (Luke 15)

My friends, go into the world:
knowing that it is God who loves us,
Christ who strengthens us,
and the Holy Spirit who empowers us for service.
Go in peace and joy! Amen.

Benediction

Go now in peace, and in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, be found by the great Shepherd and in his name seek out that which is lost. (Scott W. Bullard)

CONTEMPORARY OPTIONS

Contemporary Gathering Words (Luke 15)

When the lost are found,
there is joy!
When hope overcomes despair,
there is joy!
When we seek and find God’s faithfulness,
there is joy!

Praise Sentences (1 Timothy 1)

Praise to God who is present to us
through Christ Jesus!
Praise to God who is present to us
through one another!


From The Abingdon Worship Annual edited by Mary J. Scifres and B.J. Beu, Copyright © Abingdon Press. 

About the Author

Karin Ellis

Karin Ellis is a United Methodist pastor who lives with her husband and children in Tustin, California. She enjoys read more…
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