Worship Order for Sunday

Long Green Valley Church of the Brethren
Long Green & Kanes Rds., near Glen Arm, Md.
March 28, 2004
Worship 10:00 am Sunday School for all ages 11:15 am

Fifth Sunday of Lent

      When they kept on questioning him, he straightened up and said to them, "Let anyone among you who is without sin be the first to throw a stone at her." (John 8:7)

  Morning Praise (9:45 am)
  Announcements
  Prelude

* Call to Worship

*Hymn                             "I will sing of my Redeemer"                                344

*Opening Prayer

  Scripture                                  Luke 19:41-44

  For Children               "At the playground fence"
                                              (Pre-schoolers leave for playful worship)

  Unison Confession                                                                                    701

  Returning our Tithes and Offerings

  Offertory

*Response             (vs. 4) "When I survey the wondrous cross"                     259

*Dedication

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

  Prayer Chorus                          "Living Stones"                                (see insert)

  Pastoral Prayer

  Scripture                                    John 8:1-11

  Hymn                                     "Man of sorrows"                                        258

  Message                    "the stone of condemnation"
               Fragile, living stones - a "Passion" series based upon 1 Peter 2:4-10

*Hymn                                   "Lord, speak to me"                                      499

*Benediction


#'s are from Hymnal: A Worship Book

Worship leaders - see basic guidelines

Call to Worship

         "I will sing of the mercies of the LORD forever; With my mouth will I make known Your faithfulness to all generations. For I have said, ĎMercy shall be built up forever; Your faithfulness You shall establish in the very heavens.í" (Psalm 89:1-2 NKJV)
   

Opening Prayer

         Merciful God, "gracious, slow to anger and abounding in steadfast love and faithfulness" (Psalm 86:15), we praise you. Bless this time with your abiding presence, as you have promised (Matthew 18:20). Through your Holy Spirit, teach us to "depart from evil, and do good; seek peace, and pursue it" (Psalm 34:14, 1 Peter 3:11). As we fix our eyes upon the cross during this season of "passion," tune our hearts to proclaim, "I know that my Redeemer lives, and that at the last he will stand upon the earth" (Job 19:25). This we pray in Jesusí name. Amen
   

Unison Confession

Dear Jesus,
         it is hard to forgive people
                  when they hurt us and our friends.
We want to hit back -
         and sometimes we do.
But you teach us to love our enemies
         no matter what they do.
Forgive, Lord Jesus,
         when we do not forgive others.
Help us to understand why people hurt others,
         and let our hearts be filled with love for them. AMEN

Hymnal #701 
from 365 Children's Prayers
© 1989 Lion Publishing Corp.
    

For Children
"At the playground fence"
Luke 19:41-44

         This morning I want to share with you another episode from when I was a young boy. Back then, I went to Wyngate Elementary School. My story begins on the playground by a fence. I donít remember what let up to it, but there was a another boy at that school with whom I got into an argument. Of course, I know that you never get into arguments with other children... Oh, you do, do you? Hmm.

         Well, we must have started fighting with words - again, over what, I donít recall, but somehow we went on to battle in a different way. With stones. Thatís right, we started throwing rocks at each other, right there at the playground fence. Was that a smart thing to do? No. It wasnít, was it? Somebody could really get hurt if you start throwing stones at each other. Well, that somebody ended up being me. He must have been better at throwing than me. He nailed me on the top of my head. It hit so hard that it started bleeding.

         I donít remember whether we went to a teacher at that point, or whether a teacher found us, but I ended up in the nurseís office. I was afraid my Mom would be really mad at me because my shirt got all bloody. When they called her, she raced to the school - you know how mothers get, all worried and everything. She took me home.

         There is a price to be paid for throwing stones at school, you know. Even if youíre the one who gets hurt. I had to stay after school one day. Detention. In the principalís office. I was a little afraid of the principal. He was big and stern and "official." However, on the day when I was to take my "punishment," which I sort of felt I already got in being nailed by the rock, the principal needed to be away. So, I spent the afternoon with the assistant principal, who was really nice. I felt like he cared about me. He talked with me about other ways of dealing with disagreements, things beside throwing stones.

         What sort of things do you think he said? When you get into an argument with someone on the playground, what else do you think you could do to settle it other than throw stones? (Keep asking questions and getting their responses, praising especially the good alternatives they think of - even the goofy ones, which might actually work. Have some possibilities partly developed in your own head to toss out for them to complete. Let it come, however, from them).

         One more thing I remember. The assistant principal had a little candy jar on his desk, and he gave me a piece of candy. Iíve brought with me some "sucky" candy, also, that Iíd like to share with you. Please wait to stick it in your mouth until later, when your parents say itís okay. As you suck on it, remember my story. Remember, also, all the ideas you came up with for settling arguments without throwing stones.
    

Returning our Tithes and Offerings

Chew on these words as you prepare to return your offering:

(Read 2 Corinthians 5:16-21)

Ushers?
   

Dedication

         Lord God, weíre still learning how to be "ambassadors for Christ." Your amazing love is a tough act to follow. Words alone donít cut it. Neither does just our money. With our offerings right now we return to you what you have first given to us, part of our responsibility as good stewards. Help us not to stop there, however. Keep nudging us to go further into this "ministry of reconciliation" which demands of us - as we just sang - our soul, our life, our all. Only in Jesus can we. Amen.

(refers to 2 Corinthians 5:16-21 & vs. 4 of
"When I survey the wondrous cross," 259)
   

Living Stones
I Peter 2:4ff

Chorus:
         Living stones, living stones, we are holy, living stones,
         built upon the firm foundation that is Jesus.
         And as we cling to that Rock who became a stumbling block
         we remember we are living stones

Written by Michael Card
© 2002 Mole End Music (ASCAP)

clips of this song can be heard at grassrootsmusic.com and artistdirect.com
These words are for learning only (the song is copyrighted).
Commit the tune & words to memory, then sing from the heart.
Be thankful for the musician's gift, and bless the Lord.
      

Pastoral Prayer

 

written closer to the time (if not at the moment)

 

Benediction

 

 

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

 

©2003 Peter L. Haynes
(unless otherwise stated, worship resources were written by him)

 

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