Worship Order for Sunday

Long Green Valley Church of the Brethren
Long Green & Kanes Rds., near Glen Arm, Md.
September 9, 2012
Worship 10:00 am          Sunday School 11:10am

      ďAnd let people learn to devote themselves to good works in order to meet urgent needs, so that they may not be unproductive.Ē  (Titus 3:14)

  Beginning with Praise (9:50 am)     "God, make us your family"          (see insert)
  Prelude                             "As Torrents in Summer"                               Elgar

  Call to Worship                             Isaiah 35
                                                                (rise when directed)

*Song                           "God, make us your family" (clip)                 (see insert)

*Lordís Prayer

*Responsive Scripture              Psalm 146:3,5-10                                     825

  Song                                             "Shema"                                   (see insert)

  Blessing our teachers and disciples

  Sharing a joy, a concern, a word of testimony or praise
                                 (please be brief, and aware of God's listening presence)

  Pastoral Prayer

  Gospel Glimpses                        Mark 7:24-37                      from The Message

  Returning our Tithes and Offerings

  Offertory                                       "Prayer"                                      Guilmant
                                        (Please sign the attendance pad and pass it on)

  Annual Conference Moment

  Scripture                                    James 2:1-17

  Message                                "Taking a seat" (mp3)

*Hymn                             "I will sing of my Redeemer"                               344


*Postlude                                 "If Christ is Mine"                                 Herman

*Rise in body or in spirit

#'s are from Hymnal: A Worship Book

Worship leaders - see basic guidelines

Call to Worship
Isaiah 35

1 - The wilderness and the dry land shall be glad,

2 - the desert shall rejoice and blossom;

1 - like the crocus it shall blossom abundantly, and rejoice with joy and singing.

2 - The glory of Lebanon shall be given to it, the majesty of Carmel and Sharon.

1 - They shall see the glory of the Lord, the majesty of our God.

2- Strengthen the weak hands, and make firm the feeble knees. Say to those who are of a fearful heart,

1 - ďBe strong, do not fear! Here is your God. He will come with vengeance, with terrible recompense. He will come and save you.Ē

2 - Then the eyes of the blind shall be opened, and the ears of the deaf unstopped;

1 - then the lame shall leap like a deer, and the tongue of the speechless sing for joy.

2 - For waters shall break forth in the wilderness, and streams in the desert;

1 - the burning sand shall become a pool, and the thirsty ground springs of water;

2 - the haunt of jackals shall become a swamp, the grass shall become reeds and rushes.

1 - A highway shall be there, and it shall be called the Holy Way;

2 - the unclean shall not travel on it, but it shall be for Godís people;

1 - no traveler, not even fools, shall go astray.

2 - No lion shall be there, nor shall any ravenous beast come up on it; they shall not be found there,

1 - (motion for congregation to rise) but the redeemed shall walk there. And the ransomed of the Lord shall return, and come to Zion with singing;

2 - everlasting joy shall be upon their heads;

1 - they shall obtain joy and gladness,

2 - and sorrow and sighing shall flee away.

scripture text from the New Revised Standard Version
copyright 1989 by the Division of Christian Education of the
National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America.
Used by permission. All rights reserved.

Lordís Prayer

As part of Godís family, letís join our voices in the prayer Jesus taught, saying,Ö

Our Father who art in heaven,
            hallowed be thy name.
      Thy kingdom come.
      Thy will be done
            on earth as it is in heaven.
      Give us this day our daily bread,
            and forgive us our debts,
                  as we forgive our debtors,
            and lead us not into temptation,
                  but deliver us from evil.
      For thine is the kingdom,
                  and the power,
                  and the glory,
                              for ever. Amen.


Responsive Scripture
(Psalm 146:3-10)

Do not put your trust in princes,
     in mortals, in whom there is no help.
When their breath departs, they return to the earth;
     on that very day their plans perish.
Happy are those whose help is the God of Jacob,
     whose hope is in the Lord their God,
who made heaven and earth,
     the sea, and all that is in them;
who keeps faith forever;
     who executes justice for the oppressed;
     who gives food to the hungry.
The Lord sets the prisoners free;
     the Lord opens the eyes of the blind.
The Lord lifts up those who are bowed down;
     the Lord loves the righteous.
The Lord watches over the strangers;
     he upholds the orphan and the widow,
     but the way of the wicked he brings to ruin.
The Lord will reign forever,
     your God, O Zion, for all generations.
Praise the Lord!

Hymnal #825
scripture text from the New Revised Standard Version
copyright 1989 by the Division of Christian Education of the
National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America.
Used by permission. All rights reserved.

Blessing our teachers and disciples

            Our Sunday School program restarts today for a new year. Please join me in dedicating what God will be doing in our classrooms.

It is our task, O Lord, to listen, to pay attention to your Word, to lean into your voice in such a way that we bodily follow you. This is not something we can do alone. While spiritual growth is dependent upon each of us listening and learning and seeking to be and do what you are calling us individually to become, we cannot grow all by ourselves. You made us to be as a body, together listening and seeking your will.

We have recognized the ability of some whom you have called to teach. Bless them afresh during this new Sunday School year. Help them to carefully prepare and share their lessons. Give them hearts that are passionate for you and for us. Nudge them to listen to more than just each Sundayís scriptures, to be constant in their daily devotions, and seek you moment by moment, step by step. It is an awesome task with which they are entrusted. May your grace cover their inadequacies, such that their weaknesses become your strengths, their failings be as your diamonds in the rough.

All of us are called to be learners, no matter our age. Bless us as disciples of Jesus. Help us to be more regular in our attendance, seeing the importance of growing in grace and truth. Grant us humility to admit we donít know everything, that we have something to learn each and every day. In so doing, ground us in the ďhumus,Ē the soil of the gospel, the good news of the kingdom Jesus came to reveal. As much as we are able, help us to prepare to learn each week. Nudge us to listen to your Word Monday through Saturday, and not just on Sunday morning. Discipline us to daily read the scriptures and pray, so we may grow as disciples. May your grace cover our inadequacies, such that our weaknesses become your strengths, our failings be as your diamonds in the rough.

Finally, Lord God, may Christian education not be limited to one hour each week. May our homes be schools of learning. May your Word be written upon our doorposts, as well as upon our hearts. Bless each home as a Monday school, a Tuesday school, a throughout the week school of discipleship, whether many persons (young or old) shelter under our roof, or just one person.

Hear, O Israel.
We listen, Lord God.
Bless your children.
In the name of Jesus, we pray.


Pastoral Prayer

1 - God of grand purposes and minute providence, hear our prayers for our brothers and sisters in the human family who this day are enduring hard times.

2 - Bless those near us or far away whose very being is torn by grief. Come to them through the arms and words of others, that they may be embraced with your comfort.

1 - Bless those near to us or far away who suffering from injury or disease. Let them receive both the outside medical care and the inner resources to fight back to health.

2 - Bless those near or far away whose relationships have soured, and marriages that have become covert or overt feuds. Help them to recognise and take the best way ahead.

1 - Bless those near or far away who are unjustly treated; socially or politically, at work or at home, free or captive. Bring justice and rehabilitation, we pray.

2 - Bless those near or far away who feel wronged by their own church. May they and those who may have misused them, be brought to the grace of interpersonal healing.

1 - Bless our family members, near or far away, that we may uphold each person in prayer, support each in times of crisis, and forgive one another for our many sins.

2 - God of grand purpose and minute providence, please assist us to turn our good intentions into deeds and to carry our prayers over into all the coming and going of this busy week ahead of us. Through Christ our model and our enabler.

1 -  And all Godís people said, ďAmen!Ē

by Bruce Prewer, Uniting Church in Australia,
from Resources: Based on the Revised Common Lectionary
slightly adapted

Returning our Tithes and Offerings

            As we listen to these gospel stories, we may be on the verge of being offended by them. After all, in replying to Jesus putting her off, a foreign woman seems to imply that she is but a dog waiting for table scraps, and he doesnít correct this image. This almost flies in the face of how we modern folks believe people should be treated. Furthermore, Jesus then put his finger in a manís ear and spit on his tongue. How unsanitary! Imagine the lawsuits today for such a healing event.

            And yet, herein we discover good news. An outsider is emboldened to come to Jesus for help and he heals her daughter, being impressed by her faith. There is almost a playfulness to this encounter, which could lead us to find humor in our own prayerful struggles. Does God respond with a wink and a nudge when we ask for help?... And when it comes to healing, we live in a time of keeping distance, when medical care is often cold and clinical. People are starved for human touch. However, to help someone who is sick, we need to move beyond disgust over bodily fluids. Touch is vital. Remember, it was through the broken body and shed blood of our Savior on the cross that all have been redeemed.

            As you return your offering just now, ponder once again the good news of Jesus, and how God in Christ continues to reach out and touch us.


Annual Conference Moment

            Our delegate to the annual meeting of our denomination, Gary Miller, will give a partial report on this event. This is the third installment of what may be several other moments during worship in the weeks to come, as he spreads out his report into more easily digestible portions.


Go now, and invest your lives in the works of faith.
            Make a name for yourselves
                        for generosity and compassion.
            Fulfil Godís holy law
                        by putting love into action
                                    as eagerly for others
                                                as you would for yourselves. 

And may God be your defender and provider;
May Christ Jesus dispel all that disturbs or disables you;
and may the Holy Spirit make you rich in faith
            and loving and merciful in action.

Go in peace to love and serve the Lord,
            In the name of Christ. Amen.

©2003 Nathan Nettleton,
from www.laughingbird.net,
slightly adapted.


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

International Lesson:
Faith and Life Resources

Mennonite Publishing House

International Lesson:
Mennonite Weekly Review

(scroll down on left to "Sunday School lessons)

International Lesson:
Christian Standard
(one week ahead)

International Lesson:
Adult Bible Studies
from The United Methodist Publishing House
(click "supplemental resources" and "current events supplement" under both the "Student" and "Teacher" sections in the left hand column)

International Lesson:
International Bible Lesson
a weekly column by L.G. Parkhurst, Jr.
in "The Oklahoman" newspaper
also found

International Lesson:
Living Web Sunday School Project

While one of our adult classes follows the International lesson above (see also), using
A Guide for Biblical Studies,
published quarterly by our denomination,
another class often uses one of the
Good Ground series.

For children and youth, we use the new
Gather Round curriculum
(developed jointly by the Church of the Brethren and the Mennonite Church)


©2012 Peter L. Haynes
(unless otherwise stated, worship resources were written by him)


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