Worship Order for Sunday

Long Green Valley Church of the Brethren
Long Green & Kanes Rds., near Glen Arm, Md.
March 3, 2002
Worship 10:00 am Sunday School for all ages 11:15 am

Third Sunday in Lent

      "For if while we were enemies, we were reconciled to God through the death of his Son, much more surely, having been reconciled, will we be saved by his life."
                                (Romans 5:10)

  Call to Worship                        Psalm 95:1-7

  Opening Prayer

*Hymn                             "Let the whole creation cry"                                     51

*Unison Prayer of Confession                                                                       692

  Childrenís Message                "The Yardstick"

  Hymn                         (vs. 1) "I am thine, O Lord"                                         505
    
                         (children leave for choir or pre-school play )

  Sharing a joy, a concern, a word of testimony or praise

  Hymn                       (vs. 2-3) "I am thine, O Lord"                                        505

  Pastoral Prayer

  A good word about Carpenterís Kitchen

  Responding with our Tithes and Offerings

  Offertory

  Hymn                                    "Were you there"                                            257

  Scripture                                 Romans 5:1-11

  Message                       "While we were enemies"

*Hymn                         "We are people of Godís peace"                               407

*Benediction


#'s are from Hymnal: A Worship Book

Worship leaders - see basic guidelines

Opening Prayer

         An old Brethren practice was to turn around and kneel facing the pew during times of prayer. Well, folks, this Psalm has just called us to "worship and bow down" and "kneel before the Lord, our Maker." If you are able, I invite you to do just that as we open ourselves to the One we have come to worship. (Pause as people prepare) Please pray with me.

         O God, you are the rock of our salvation - the firm foundation upon which all of life rests. Like a life-giving stream in the desert flowing from a source few would imagine possible (Exodus 17:6), you provide refreshment to these parched lips. Well, Lord, we come this day as thirsty people. Inspire us as we seek to drink in your Word. As we do, help us to truly open our ears and listen. Help us not to harden our hearts or close our doors. Help us not to give in to doubt and despair, but rather to make a joyful noise that rings out above all the mumbling and grumbling and clamor of everyday existence. Let the whole creation cry, Alleluia! Let the whole congregation cry, Alleluia! Let me, with heart, soul, mind, and body cry, Alleluia! Amen.

         Now, brothers and sisters, if you are able, stand and make a joyful noise!

Unison Prayer of Confession

O God,
      you rule the world from end to end
            and for all time.
You alone are God. In you alone we hope.

Forgive our sins.
Heal our diseases.
Save our lives from destruction.

We repent of our stubbornness and pride.
We desire to yield ourselves more fully to your will.

Keep us in your presence
      that we might serve and witness in the world,
      through Jesus Christ, our Lord. AMEN

#692 - written by Ernest Fremont Tittle,
adapted from A Book of Pastoral Prayers,
Abingdon-Cokesbury Press, New York and Nashville, © 1951
for The Mennonite Hymnal, copyright © 1969.
Further revised by The Hymnal Project, copyright © 1992

Childrenís Message
"The Yardstick"

Theme: Jesus took the punishment we should have received.
         One of the most fundamental Christian doctrines is that of the atonement for our sins by Jesus Christ. The atonement contains two elements; this sermon deals with one. Jesus was punished in our place, for the sins we commit. Christís atonement allows us to escape God s punishment and receive salvation. The sentence for all sinners is death. However, Jesus died for us. An understanding of this is important if we would learn about forgiveness and salvation; it is also important for revealing the tremendous love God showed in Jesus Christ. Christ suffered for us willingly, lovingly.

Scripture: Isaiah 53:4

Device: A yardstick

Goals: To teach the meaning of atonement
           To reveal the love Jesus has for us
           To help the children experience the meaning of Godís judgment on our sin
           To help them experience what it means to be saved by Jesus

Technique: A yardstick is an amazing symbol. Hold it in your hands and children get a message. Punishment. The strong symbolism of a yardstick is what makes this sermon work so well. Children immediately know what you are talking about, and the yardstick brings with it feelings that children associate with punishment.
         Explain to the children that the verse in Isaiah was talking about Jesus. It tells us what Jesus did for us. Briefly state how the verse applies to Jesus. After this is done, pull out the yardstick. Smack it against the palm of your hand, or noisily against a table. Look at the children with a disciplinary glint in your eye. Youíll get a response. Ask what this brings to their minds.
         Have the children talk about the times they have been punished. It can become a rather humorous conversation, especially as the parents listen and react. After the children have had time to talk, ask if their brothers or sisters are ever punished. Children love to talk about this too. Ask if they ever took the place of a brother or sister who was about to be spanked. No child would likely do such a thing. Ask if they would like to have somebody take their place when they are about to get spanked. Of course they would.
         This is what Jesus did. He was punished in our place. Ask the children how many of them do wrong things. All do. State that Godís punishment is for anyone who does wrong. Although we were the guilty ones, Jesus took the punishment for us. He saved us. Jesus never did anything wrong, but he let God punish him instead of us. He took our place.

Notes: This sermon provides a good opportunity to include parents in the dialogue.

from Creating Children's Sermons, by Bucky Dann, pp. 50-51

Responding with our Tithes and Offerings

         (Previous to this moment, one of our new members encouraged others to get involved in serving at the downtown soup kitchen we support, Carpenter's Kitchen.  She herself served for the first time two months ago, and recognized a number of folks there. You see, a year and a half ago, she was on the receiving end...)

         Thank you, Lord, for bringing our sister Patty into this fellowship. She has been to us a blessing - a cup of cool, refreshing water. Thank you for her willingness to share her own story, with its highs and lows. She helps us to confess our own failings and look to you for our salvation. Continue to bless her. Just now we ask your blessing upon the offering we are about to receive. Help us to make wise use of it. With it, bless the many ministries it helps to support. In Jesusí name we pray. Amen.

 

Interested in Sunday School?
Below is a growing list of possible sites to visit. As you discover others, please let us know.

International Lesson thoughts
from the
Mennonite Publishing House

International Lesson
Commentary by
Richard Hughes
(posted on Saturday)

International Lesson
Commentary by
Edwin Elliott

 

©2002 Peter L. Haynes
(unless otherwise stated, worship resources were written by him)

 

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