Worship Order for Sunday

Long Green Valley Church of the Brethren
Long Green & Kanes Rds., near Glen Arm, Md.
July 5, 2015
Worship 10:00 am          Sunday School 11:10am


      Then David sang this funeral song for Saul and his son Jonathan. David ordered everyone in Judah to learn the Song of the Bow.”      (2 Samuel 1:17-18, CEB)

  Music to Begin (9:50 am)           “The Song of the Bow”            (insert)
  Prelude                                     “Supplication”                              Schreiner

*Responsive Call to Worship

*Hymn                           Oh, how wondrous the grace                         147

*Opening Prayer

  Playful Scripture                    Three arrows

  Returning our Tithes and Offerings

  Offertory                                     “Cantabile”                              Lemmens

  Gospel Blessings                      Matthew 5:1-16                                   834

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

   Prayer Hymn             Seek ye first the kingdom of God                     324

  Pastoral Prayer

  Scripture                            2 Samuel 1:1-4, 17-18

  Hymn                                 The Song of the Bow                          (insert)

  Message       The Song of the Bow, and the gift of grief (mp3)

*Hymn                                  Soon and very soon                                611


*Postlude                               “Allegro Moderato”                         De Monti

*Rise in body or in spirit

#'s are from Hymnal: A Worship Book

Worship leaders - see basic guidelines

Call to Worship

One: Out of the depths I cry to you, Lord, hear my voice.

All:   Let your ears be attentive to my cry for mercy.

One: If you, Lord, kept a record of sins, who could stand?

All:   But with you there is forgiveness, so that we can, with reverence, serve you.

One: I wait for the Lord, my whole being waits,

All:   and in his word I put my hope.

One: I wait for the Lord more than the night watch waits for morning;

All:   yes, more than the night watch waits for morning!

One: Israel, put your hope in the Lord,

All:   Because faithful love is with the Lord;

One: because great redemption is with our God!

All:   He is the one who will redeem Israel from all its sin.

Psalm 130, adapted from both
the New International Version®, NIV®
© 1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.®
Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.
and the Common English Bible
Copyright © 2011 by Common English Bible

Opening Prayer

God of wondrous grace,
        who hears beneath and beyond our words;
        in whose care and keeping we securely rest;
        who does not keep score of our failures in doing what is right;
    be in our waiting this hour.
We rejoice in the dawning of this brand new day.
        We are grateful for life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness
                which is the birthright of all who dwell in this land.
        May we never forget what a blessing it is
                to gather together to worship you.
Yes, be in our waiting this hour.
        Beyond the words of our mouths
               and the meditations of our hearts,
            open the depths of our being
                to the riches of your grace
                    and the greatness of your love.
This we pray in the name of our Redeemer. Amen.


Playful Scripture
Three arrows
1 Samuel 20
- Jonathan & David, part 2

             Over the past several weeks, we have been traveling through the story of the Bible character, David. We’ve remembered how God called this shepherd boy to one day become king of Israel, and how he faced up to the giant Goliath and brought him down with a stone. We remembered how David was blessed with a true friend named Jonathan, the son of king Saul.

             It is a long story between the day David defeated Goliath and the day he was made king. In the middle lies the tale of the three arrows. Now, we could read this lengthy episode in 1 Samuel 20. Instead, I will playfully abridge and tell it. In order to do so, however, I need four volunteers. One will be Jonathan, who is the main character here… another, David… then Jonathan’s father, Saul – the king… and finally, Jonathan’s servant (place them appropriately)

             Now, Saul was a troubled soul. Sometimes he loved David, and was soothed by his singing. Other times, he was very angry at David – wanting to hurt him. It was a problem for David and his best friend, Jonathan, Saul’s son. Was Saul going to be mean or nice. Maybe you know someone like that.

             One time, David went to his friend Jonathan, asking, “what did I ever do to your father to make him so mad?” Jonathan tried to assure David that his Dad wouldn’t hurt him, at least not while he, Jonathan, was around. They made a covenant of friendship with each other, and came up with a plan to figure out if Saul was in a really bad mood. Here’s what they decided.

             The next time they were to all be together, Jonathan would go to his father, Saul, and apologize for David, saying, “David had to go home and spend time with his family.” If Saul replied, “okay, that’s fine,” Jonathan would send a message to David indicating that his dad was in a good mood, and David could stop by later, no problem. If, however, this made Saul angry, the message would be “stay away.” Sending the message would involve a bow and three arrows, which I just happen to have right here (a small dollar store nerf-like set).

             Here is how it happened. David stayed out in the field, waiting. Jonathan got together with his father, Saul. At one point, Saul asked, “where is David?” You could tell he was already a bit mad that David wasn’t there. Jonathan answered, “David had to go home and spend time with his family.” This was the moment to decide: was Saul in a good mood or a dangerous mood. Which do you think it was? … Yes (or no), he was angry. And he was angry with Jonathan, and said, “You fool! You’re just like your mother. I know that you are best friends with that ‘son of Jesse.’ As long as he lives, you’ll never be king after me. Go and bring him to me. I’ll get rid of him.” Jonathan answered, “why do you want to go and do that?” Saul was so mad at Jonathan that he picked up a spear and threw it at him. Fortunately, he missed.

             Jonathan then put their plan into action. He took his bow and three arrows, and a servant boy and went to the edge of the field where David was hiding. (Don’t shoot yet, because I need to reveal the plan.) Jonathan was to shoot his three arrows and then send his servant to get them. If Saul was in a good mood, Jonathan would yell to the boy, “I think you’ve gone too far, the arrows are closer.” That would tell David that it was okay to come, for Saul wasn’t angry. If, however, Saul was in a foul mood, Jonathan was to yell to his servant, “You haven’t gone far enough, the arrows are beyond you.” This would tell David to get away as soon as possible… So, which message was Jonathan to give?

             It’s time to shoot your arrows. Try to keep them in the center aisle… Now send your servant. Then say …. What?  “You haven’t gone far enough, the arrows are beyond you.” By the way, the servant would know nothing about it, so Saul wouldn’t get angry at him, too.

             After retrieving the arrows, Jonathan sent the servant home, and then secretly David and Jonathan met to say goodbye. They hugged and cried, because they were good friends and might never see each other again. And Jonathan said to David, “Go in peace, my brother.”

And that is the story of three arrows.


Returning our Tithes and Offerings

            How are you doing with our summer “Read to Feed” program? Adults, have you been in contact with those you are sponsoring? Have you been checking in with them? Are your arrows of encouragement aiming where they do the most good? Readers, are you spending time with good books, counting your pages, keeping track of your summer offering in your Heifer bank? … Just checking.             (read more about this)

            Through two letters, the apostle Paul checked in with the folks he was mentoring in Corinth. He challenged them to grow in grace by giving beyond themselves to others. As an incentive, he mentioned the churches in Macedonia, who were running circles around the Corinthians in generosity, even though they were poor. He wrote:

              Be the best in this work of grace in the same way that you are the best in everything, such as faith, speech, knowledge, total commitment, and the love we inspired in you. I’m not giving an order, but by mentioning the commitment of others, I’m trying to prove the authenticity of your love also. You know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ. Although he was rich, he became poor for our sakes, so that you could become rich through his poverty. *  

Ponder that as the plates are passed. Ushers?

*2 Corinthians 8:7-9 from the Common English Bible
Copyright © 2011 by Common English Bible


Gospel Blessings

When Jesus saw the crowds, he went up the mountain; and after he sat down, his disciples came to him.  Then he began to speak, and taught them, saying:

"Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.

Blessed are those who mourn, for they will be comforted.

Blessed are the meek, for they will inherit the earth.

Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they will be filled.

Blessed are the merciful, for they will receive mercy.

Blessed are the pure in heart, for they will see God.

Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called children of God.

Blessed are those who are persecuted for righteousness' sake, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.

Blessed are you when people revile you and persecute you and utter all kinds of evil against you falsely on my account.

Rejoice and be glad, for your reward is great in heaven, for in the same way they persecuted the prophets who were before you.

You are the salt of the earth; but if salt has lost its taste, how can its saltiness be restored?  It is no longer good for anything, but is thrown out and trampled under foot.

You are the light of the world.  A city built on a hill cannot be hid.

No one after lighting a lamp puts it under the bushel basket, but on the lampstand, and it gives light to all in the house.

In the same way, let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father in heaven."

Hymnal #834, Matthew 5:1-16 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

Pastoral Prayer


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



             It is in the middle of another Bible song of grief that we hear these surprising, yet familiar words of hope. Listen, and allow them to encourage you to step by faith into this week.


(start tapping a heartbeat on your chest,
remaining constant through & beyond all the following words.
End with heartbeat.)


The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases,
        his mercies never come to an end;
    they are new every morning;
            great is your faithfulness.
     “The Lord is my portion,” says my soul,
                “therefore I will hope in him.”

Lamentations 3:22-24 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


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)


©2014 Peter L. Haynes
(unless otherwise stated, worship resources were written by him)


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