Welcome to this weeks Virtual Service, brought to you by Rev David Burt.
30th August 2020
🎶 The King of Love my Shepherd is
📖 Exodus Chapter 3 Vs 1 – 14
📖 Matthew Chapter 16 Verse 21 – 28
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Let us pray
God, you are solid and sure and reliable,
while at the same time being creative,
adaptable and free.
We change too,
but not always in a good way.
We catch sight
of something new and life-changing
in the teaching of Jesus
and we vow to be different,
to follow him for ever.
Then the kaleidoscope turns,
and a new picture emerges:
one that involves cost,
and letting go,
one where people do not come flocking to hear
what we have to say,
but are hostile,
or, worse still, indifferent;
a future that holds the real possibility of dying,
and we are not ready for that.
help us to take things a bit more slowly;
to get our balance and find a way of following
that is sustainable for us and honouring to you.
May we neither shame ourselves by dwelling
on all the mistakes we have made in the past,
nor frighten ourselves by looking too far into the future.
Help us rather to take one day at a time,
to keep going by putting one foot in front of the other,
lifting our eyes now and then
and surprising ourselves
to see just how far we have come.
And if the way for a while is easy,
let us enjoy it;
and if suffering comes, give us strength to bear it.
And in both remind us that you have been there before,
and have promised to stay with us to the end,
which may, if the impossible promises of our faith
turn out to be true, not be the end at all,
but a glorious new beginning.
Keep us faithful,
keep us hopeful;
above all, O God,
keep us going.
In Jesus’ name.
PRAYERS FOR OTHERS
we view you, as Christians,
through the lens of Jesus of Nazareth,
a man who experienced more and achieved more
in his tragically short lifetime
than most of us will if we live to be a hundred.
If it is true that you were present in him
in a uniquely powerful way;
his thinking completely in tune with yours;
his life imbued with your spirit,
then we can look at him and see you
in a new and different way:
not separate from human brokenness and suffering,
but one with us in our loss and grieving,
as well as in our wonderment and joy.
We pray today for any today who are going through
the long, slow journey of loss, and grief, and recovery,
and that means all of us in one way or another.
The announcement of bad news:
“I must go to Jerusalem and suffer… and die…”
We pray for those who have received recently
the kind of news that all of us dread:
news of serious illness,
or the loss of a loved one.
Be with them on the road they must travel
from here on in.
And for those who have to break bad news to others:
may they receive the care and support that they need.
There is the immediate, instinctive denial:
“Never, Lord!… This must not happen to you!”
Sometimes, O God, it is just too much to bear.
We pray for those who have been assaulted
with loss on a scale that no-one should have to face,
or whose back has finally broken under one last, tiny straw.
May there be ears to listen, arms to hold,
hearts to understand until they are ready
to face their truth and take the first small step forward,
even if that leads to…
…the anger, the looking for someone to blame:
“Get behind me, Satan!”
Forgive us if we have lashed out in anger
at someone who did nothing to deserve it
because they were voicing our own secret thoughts
or just because they were close by.
Grant us compassion, and broad shoulders,
if someone needs to vent their rage on us.
There is the bargaining, the doing of deals,
the desperate searching for hope:
“If you are willing to lose your life, you will find it”.
May we move quickly from false, futile deals
with the universe, to this real, honest deal with you.
Help us to let go of whatever it is we are most fearful
of losing, then no-one can take it from us.
Help us, as quickly as we can, as slowly as we need
to reach acceptance, of a new and different future:
“The Son of Man will come in his glory…
and you will see him”.
God, grant hope to all who are in despair,
or someone to hold a candle of hope on their behalf
until its light reaches through to warm and encourage them.
God, who knows from the inside what it is
to be human, with all the joy and sorrow that entails,
bless us and all for whom our prayers are offered.
Hear us now as a family we pray:
Our Father in heaven, hallowed be your name,
your kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as in heaven.
Give us today our daily bread.
Forgive us our sins as we forgive those who sin against us.
Save us from the time of trial and deliver us from evil.
For the kingdom, the power and the glory are yours,
now and for ever.
🎶 Will your Anchor Hold