A Call to Worship
Christmas 1A 2013
Psalm 148

We come together in response to the heavenly host’s summons to praise our Maker.
Praise God, you sun, moon, skies and twinkling stars, and all you vapours through space.

We come together in response to all creation’s summons to worship God our Maker.
Worship God, you animals and ocean dwellers, and you changing weather patterns.

We come together in response to the earth and seas’ summons, and to humankind’s
need to celebrate God our Maker, so that “...every created thing gives praise to the Lord.”
Celebrate God, all you peoples of every social level, age and condition; for God’s holy
name is very great, and God’s glory towers above and beyond all the earth and heaven! Amen.

Psalm 148

1 Praise the LORD! Praise the LORD from the heavens!
Praise him from the skies!
2 Praise him, all his angels! Praise him, all the armies of heaven!
3 Praise him, sun and moon! Praise him, all you twinkling stars!
4 Praise him, skies above! Praise him, vapours high above the clouds!

5 Let every created thing give praise to the LORD,
for he issued his command, and they came into being.
6 He established them forever and forever. His orders will never be revoked.
7 Praise the LORD from the earth, you creatures of the ocean depths,
8 fire and hail, snow and storm, wind and weather that obey him,
9 mountains and all hills, fruit trees and all cedars,
10 wild animals and all livestock, reptiles and birds,

11 kings of the earth and all people, rulers and judges of the earth,
12 young men and maidens, old men and children.
13 Let them all praise the name of the LORD.
For his name is very great; his glory towers over the earth and heaven!
14 He has made his people strong, honouring his godly ones –
the people of Israel who are close to him. Praise the LORD!

Prayers of Praise and ExaltationB
Christmas 1A 2013
Psalm 148

Creating God, as a community of faith we joyfully respond to creations’
summons to join in everlasting songs of praise to the Lord our God. With
confidence in our God, we come together with all creation to celebrate
the holy and majestic powers of our God. All creation has responded to
the invitation – even the summons – to honour and revere our God - and
so from the largest to the smallest; from the heaviest to the lightest; from
the strongest to the most fragile; from the most colourful to the most bland
of created things; and from the most intelligent to the most dim-witted of
God’s creations, we join in an anthem of praise to the Lord God Almighty.
God’s holy name is very great, and God’s glory towers above all creation.

Holy God, whose radiant light of love has been expressed in so many ways
within the created universe as we know it or as we imagine it to be amongst
all things visible and invisible; amongst all things with and without a voice
to express their praises to God; amongst all things that live in isolation or in
community with their neighbours; and all things that are just too mysterious—
beyond even our dreams of the vastness of the universe and outer space.
The Lord, the Great Creator “saw that it was excellent in every way.” “So the
creation of the heavens and the earth and everything in them was completed.”
God’s holy name is very great, and God’s glory towers above all creation.

Holy God, the Initiator of all life and breath, we your people of every age
and condition, join together to exalt in the blessedness we know and enjoy
as God’s creations; and especially because we have been entrusted with
the instinctive need to worship our Creating God, and to glorify our God’s
majesty and unlimited powers. God has also breathed into us something of
the very nature of God, which enables us to learn and communicate with
our Wise and Holy God, so that we all have the capacity to respond with
love and praise to the Giver of all life, all wisdom, all grace and all mercy.
Therefore, with never-ending songs of praise, we God’s people on this earth
sing praises, and we celebrate together the holy name of the Lord, our God.
God’s holy name is very great, and God’s glory towers above all creation. Amen.

A Personal Meditation
Christmas 1A 2013
Psalm 148

In Psalm 148, the psalmist has covered almost all that was known physically
and spiritually about creation and its Creator. As I read these words, images
and memories pop up in my mind of experiences of sunrises and sunsets; the
phases of the moon in all its beauty and mystery; and the immensity and secrets
of the Milky Way and the soaring comets; all well beyond my comprehension.
These wonders of nature encourage my imagination to flow freely, developing
in me a greater awareness of the miracles of God’s power, grace and wisdom!

Creative pause: “Praise him, skies… and vapours high above the clouds!”

Since the Psalms were created, in daily use are many new words, new ideas,
new scepticism, new sciences, and even new threats relating to God’s glorious
gift of creation. Words such as eco-systems, eco-tourism, ozone layers, and the
“big” ones – “climate change” and “global warming” - all of which have been and
are endlessly talked about, but with not much action! Was the psalmist living in a
dream world when he sang: “...Let every created thing give praise to the Lord, for
he issued his command, and they came into being. He established them forever
and forever. His orders will never be revoked...”?
The Psalm’s author knew nothing
of these sciences, but his knowledge of and faith in God was sufficient for him! He
also knew as well as we do, of all the immoral and self-centred attitudes of humanity
and their devious and manipulative ways, yet he sincerely trusted in God’s over-
arching authority over all things visible and invisible; and all things known and
mysterious. He left his life and its outcomes and his well being in God’s tender care.

Creative pause: The Psalmist trusted God, and that was enough for him!

Humanity seems to have developed its own language whenever weather is
discussed! It is always either too hot or too cold; too wet or too dry to grow things;
too changeable or too predictable; too windy or too calm to dry the washing; too
humid or insufficient air-borne moisture to enhance growth; and too wild and
stormy or too balmy, according to the weather “experts” we have all become!
We probably each have a favourite type of weather that is a “perfect” day or night—
but do we ever stop to thank God for all the variations we have in our weather?
Do you ever stop to thank God for the blessings you enjoy in this created world?

Creative pause: What is there about God’s own beauty that inspires you?

1 Genesis 1: 31b and 2: 1

Unless stated otherwise, all Bible readings and extracts used in these weekly Prayers and
Meditations are from the ‘New Living Translation’, © 1996. Copyright. All rights reserved.
Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Wheaton, Illinois 60189 USA.

*Revised Indexing Scheme from 'Consultation on Church Union' (COCU).

If the Prayers and/or Meditations are used in shared worship, please provide this acknowledgement:
© 2013 Joan Stott – ‘The Timeless Psalms’ RCL Psalms Year A. Used with permission.


Download/view a pdf file of this document here: christmas1a_2013.pdf