A Call to Worship
Good Friday Year B 2012
Psalm 22

O Lord our God, as we gather to worship you, we come,
seeking your guidance and your abiding presence.
We desperately need reminders of your presence with
us, because doubts and fears intrude on our souls.

Faithful God, we know you are near to us, but sometimes,
we cannot hear your voice above the loud noises of life.
Often, we are so much in need of you, and constantly
call on you; even though our past experiences tell us
that you will never ever leave us or ever forsake us.

Holy God, we gather to worship you, because you are
always faithful, even if we are not always faithful to you.
As we stand amongst the people, we praise you. Let all the
earth rejoice and celebrate your unfailing love and mercy. Amen.

Prayers of Lament and Praise
Good Friday Year B 2012
Psalm 22

Holy God, we come seeking and searching for your presence;
and listening for the sound of your voice; but the noises of the world
intrude on us even as we pray. Ever-faithful God, as we come
earnestly looking for signs of your presence; we also come before
you in praise and in anticipation - knowing that you are always near
to us; waiting for us to turn our full attention on you, to really focus
on you, and then be able to hear your voice warmly welcoming us.

We praise you and we give thanks to you for the past experiences
of your merciful love, and your patient encouragement to your people.
People around us are aggressive in their slander about our lifestyle
and commitments; and often, we are on the receiving end of ridicule
over our commitment to you; and it is hard to always be faithful to
God, and to our understanding of faith in God. So often we feel like we
are on play-ground equipment, riding up and down on our faith journey;
or going in circles and getting nowhere, even as we seek to serve you.

It is also very difficult to continue on in our faith journey, without
support or encouragement from other travellers; and we often feel
very alone in thanking and praising God for our life’s blessings. Yet,
despite our struggles, experience has taught us that our God never
lets us down or abandons us; and for this we offer our thanks and
praise. So yes, we will continue to speak out about your love, O God;
and we will fulfil our vows before the people who join with us in worship.
That way, we know that future generations will indeed know about our
wonderful God, and that they will offer praise to God’s holy name. Amen.

A Personal Meditation
Good Friday Year B 2012
Psalm 22

The silence is absolute! There is nothing – no sound,
no sense of a presence, there is nothing! I am alone—
forsaken and alone! My God, where are you – can’t you
hear me calling you? You hear my voice often enough
to recognise that it is me – you know – me - calling you!
Why do you ignore my cries at this particular time, when
I am most in need of your loving and supportive presence?

Creative pause: The silence is absolute, there is no sense of presence.

Every day I call on your name; and every night I call
on your name too! Despite all that silence, I am going
to continue to call on you, my God - because you are
the Holy One, the all loving God and all merciful God.
You always answered the calls of my ancestors, when
they called on you; and that gives me encouragement
and a strong hope that I am not ever forgotten by you.

Creative pause: You always answered the calls of my ancestors.

In the past, your faithful people trusted in you, because you
had never let them down, and even when things seemed
to be at their worst for them, they always said: “And yet....”
And so I am also going to say: “And yet..., despite the all my
problems I am experiencing with the rejection of my faith in
you by my sneering neighbours and former friends, and yet—
you are my God, and I trust and love you, and I know, that
soon I will be aware of your nearer presence with me again.

Creative pause: And yet..., despite the all my problems...

And so my prayers rise up to God, and my voice is lifted in
songs of praise to my never-absent God. And I invite all who
will listen to my confident assertion - that God does hear the
cries of the needy; that God never does ignore their needs
and that God will satisfy the poor with food to eat; and that the
justice of the Lord God will prevail, even to those yet unborn.
And yes, future generations will hear God’s voice and serve
their Lord, and future children will hear and respond to their God.

Creative pause: Who will listen to my confident assertion?

Unless stated otherwise, all Bible readings and extracts used in these weekly Prayers and Meditations are from
‘The New Revised Standard Version’ Copyright © 1989, Division of Christian Education of the National Council
of the Churches of Christ in the USA. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

*The additional weekly numbering is from the Revised COCU Indexing Scheme
COCU = ('Consultation on Church Union'); as it offers an easy sequential numbering
for the Revised Common Lectionary for the Church Calendar.

If any part of these Prayers and/or Meditations is used in shared worship, please provide
the following acknowledgement:
© 2012 Joan Stott – ‘The Timeless Psalms’ RCL Psalms Year B. Used with permission.


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