Worship Order for Sunday

Long Green Valley Church of the Brethren
Long Green & Kanes Rds., near Glen Arm, Md.
September 13, 2015
Worship 10:00 am          Sunday School 11:10am

Celebration of Learning

      “The Lord GOD has given me the tongue of a teacher, that I may know how to sustain the weary with a word. Morning by morning he wakens‑‑ wakens my ear to listen as those who are taught.”    (Isaiah 50:4)

  Beginning with Praise (9:50 am)                   Shema                         (insert)
  Prelude       (prepare for worship by pondering the back of the bulletin)

  Call to Worship

*Hymn                           All beautiful the march of days                      159

*Opening Prayer

  Responsive Scripture Reading

  Celebrating a new year of learning

  Song                                             Shema                                     (insert)

   Commitment to Discipleship

  Gospel story (a tough lesson)

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

   Call to Prayer           (refrain to:)Great is thy faithfulness                     327

  Pastoral Prayer (mp3)

  Scripture                                    James 3:1-12

  Returning our Tithes and Offerings

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

*Response                  (refrain to:) Great is thy faithfulness”                      327


  Scripture                                   Isaiah 50:4-9a

  Message                       The tongue of a teacher

*Hymn                                “O little children, gather”                               489


*Rise in body or in spirit

#'s are from Hymnal: A Worship Book

Worship leaders - see basic guidelines

Call to Worship

1 - The heavens are telling the glory of God;

2 - and the firmament proclaims his handiwork.

1 - Day to day pours forth speech,

2 - and night to night declares knowledge.

1 - There is no speech, nor are there words;

2 - their voice is not heard;

1 - yet their voice goes out through all the earth,

2 - and their words to the end of the world.

1 - In the heavens God has set a tent for the sun,

2 - which comes out like a bridegroom from his wedding canopy,

1 - and like a strong man runs its course with joy.

2 - Its rising is from the end of the heavens,

1 - and its circuit to the end of them;

2 - and nothing is hid from its heat.


1 - Please rise in body or spirit and let us sing

2 - “All beautiful the march of days,” #159 in your hymnal.

Psalm 19:1-6 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

Opening Prayer

             Grant, O God, that thinking, we may think your thoughts; that speaking, we may speak your word; that singing, we may sing to your praise; that hearing, we may hear your truth; and that willing, we may make your will our own, so that walking forward at the end of our worship, we may walk in your love and your peace, and departing from one another, not depart from you. Through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

by Roy Pearson (adapted)
from Hear Our Prayer
in For All Who Minister
©1993 by Brethren Press, p. 85

Responsive Scripture Reading
(Psalm 19:7-11)

The law of the Lord is perfect,
         reviving the soul;
the decrees of the Lord are sure,
         making wise the simple;

the precepts of the Lord are right,
         rejoicing the heart;
the commandment of the Lord is clear,
         enlightening the eyes;

the fear of the Lord is pure,
         enduring forever;
the ordinances of the Lord are true
         and righteous altogether.

More to be desired are they than gold,
         even much fine gold;
sweeter also than honey,
         and drippings of the honeycomb.

Moreover by them is your servant warned;
         in keeping them there is great reward.

(Hymnal #813)

Celebrating a new year of learning

             After a summer off to revive, renew, restore, reflect, refresh, regroup … to “rest,” we re-start our Sunday School program today. You are invited to participate, to join in this weekly school of discipleship, which follows our time of worship. Here we open up the ancient scriptures and discover something “more to be desired … than gold,” words that are “sweeter also than honey.” They are, that is, if we open ourselves to them, and allow God to refine us through the treasure we discover.

             Please note, however, that the way of discipleship is not just a Sunday morning affair. Don’t expect one hour a week to satisfy. In Jesus’ school of learning, his 12 disciples met together with him daily. In fact, theirs was a walking school, not confined to a classroom. Those three years could be described as one long field trip, from Galilee to Jerusalem. In our discipleship journey, we need to connect with our teacher daily. Furthermore, we do not graduate from this school. Being a disciple is a lifelong endeavor, even after we shift to being sent out in mission as apostles.

             The question for this moment of celebration is this, are you willing to sign up for a new year of learning? Before you say, “yes,” listen to the Shema from the Old Testament, ancient words that call us to a daily journey of faith.

read Deuteronomy 6:4-9

then sing - Shema


Commitment to Discipleship

Please rise in body or spirit and join me in the words printed in your bulletin,
a “Commitment to Discipleship:”

             In Jesus’ school of learning, I commit to listen with heart, soul, and mind, that I might grow as a disciple in loving God with heart, soul, and mind, and my neighbor as myself. Help me, Holy Spirit, to listen and learn - and follow Jesus - at all times, not just in the classroom.


Gospel story (a tough lesson)

             Warning: Discipleship is not easy. Even the first disciples of Jesus made mistakes along the way. The following story from the gospel of Mark tells of a tough lesson learned by Simon Peter, who thought he became an expert after he “aced” his first quiz. You know you’re in trouble when you start correcting the teacher. He went from being at the head of the class to wearing a dunce cap. Actually, it was worse. This was not to be his last stumble, either. Roosters would crow when he faced his toughest test (Mark 14:66-72). But that’s another gospel story. Listen to today’s lesson.

Mark 8:27-38


Returning our Tithes and Offerings

             It’s very tempting to think that all we have to do, when it comes to our relationship with God, is put some money in the offering plate. You and I know, however, that while money can purchase a lot of “things,” it can’t buy us love. A relationship, with God or with each other, requires so much more. The good news is that what we have to share has already been lavished upon us - free of charge. On the other hand, though, this relationship demands every aspect of our lives. Even, as James clearly reveals, our “tongue.”

             Can you offer God your “tongue” this morning? That is, can you give to God the will behind the words you speak? Are you willing to allow your relationship with God to guide what you say and how you say it? Everyday? Ponder this as the plates are passed. Ushers?



             Cleanse my tongue, O Lord. I offer it to you. May this relationship with you have dominion over me. Then I shall be able to speak the truth in love. May the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be pleasing in your sight, O LORD, my strength and my Redeemer. Amen.

(based upon Psalm 19:12-14)


May the God of steadfastness and encouragement
                  grant you to live in harmony with one another,
                  in accordance with Christ Jesus,
         so that together you may with one voice
                  glorify the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ.

Hymnal #774, Romans 15:5-6 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)


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


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