A Call to Worship
Good Friday Year C 2013
Psalm 22

God – you are our Beginning and our Ending, our goal and purpose in life.
The praises of your people encircle God’s creation, and even the universe.

God – you are Eternal Love, and our God from our conception and birth.
The thanks of your people encircle God’s creation, and even the universe.

God – you are our past, present and future, and so we come to worship you.
The reverent awe of your people encircle God’s creation and even the universe. Amen.

Prayers of Lament and Trust
Good Friday Year C 2013
Psalm 22

Holy God, we come to you in reverent worship, to be still before our God!
Within our worship, we come too, to seek to understand why our God
seems so distant from us; to share our concerns with others, and to also
ask God why our prayers do not seem to be heard. Our Generous God,
why are you ignoring us and seem so distant? O God, why have you forsaken
us, because you are our God! Yet, despite our anxiety, our uncertainty, our
bewilderment – we know that God does not change; and history reminds us
that we worship a dependable God – and so today - we worship and revere
you, Remembering God, even though we do not understand you or your ways.

Holy God, we come to you in reverent worship, to be still before our God!
Within our worship, we come too, to plead with you to be present here with
us for without your presence, there is no other way for us to be in a constant
relationship with our God. Pilgrim’s God, we come to you: we are destabilised
by our vivid imaginings and thoughts; we are weakened by our fears; damaged
by listening to the taunts of unbelievers; and we feel shaken from our secret
doubts about ourselves. O Lord our true and only God, do not stay away for
you alone are our strength. Come quickly to our aid, we pray of you! God you
are the Hope of the hopeless, and despite our struggles to understand, we
respond to you - declaring in awed wonder our sincere thanks for the blessed
insights you have given to us this day! Glory and honour be to the Lord our God!

Holy God, we come to you in reverent worship, to be still before our God!
In trust, we come to pray for all people who are in need of compassion and
love, because we know from personal experience that our God does hear
our and answers our prayers; and that God never ignores the cries of people
who are needy or suffering. In the stillness of God’s holy presence, we humbly
give our thanks for the glory of God our Eternal King, who rules all the nations
with justice and equity; and who is always ready to hear and answer when we
call on the Holy Name of our Lord and God – the Almighty One – God forever. Amen.

A Personal Meditation
Good Friday Year C 2013
Psalm 22

There is nothing quite like the silence of God! There is nothing at all that
can compare with such a disaster! Without being overly dramatic, it is
as if the bottom has dropped out of my heart and mind! I have always
trusted in God’s near presence – and God has never ever let me down!
So what do I do? Suffer in silence? That’s not my way - for when I am
suffering – I tell everyone, including God, so that they can suffer with me!
However, there is a “but” and a “yet” in these experiences! The silence
I assumed came from God was not so, because I was the one who was
silent before God! When I finally recognised the need to acknowledge God,
and despite the apparent silence, God was still present and active in my life—
caring about me! Then I made an astonishing discovery! The All-knowing
God whom I worship and seek to serve, does truly suffer with me! In that
shared and holy suffering, I was blessed by being nearer to our caring God.

Creative pause: The All-knowing God shares our suffering with us!

In my lamenting, and despite all my doubts and fears, I asked God to be
especially present to me; and praise be to God’s Holy Name, I discovered
that I rested in the palm of God’s own hand. I discovered all over again, that
I was supported and surrounded by the God that was nearer to me than my
skin; closer to me than my beating heart; nearer than the blood flowing through
my veins and arteries; and even closer to me than the breath within my lungs!
What intimacy there is with our God, if we invite God to be our Quiet Centre!

Creative pause: Our precious sense of intimacy, if God is our Quiet Centre!

One of the early lessons I learned during my varying spheres of lay ministry
was the discovery that God is not only MY God, but also OUR God! This insight
came about when I discovered that when people are given the opportunity in
small or large groups to “Share their Faith” – to tell how “things” have been
for them since we were last together - that this develops an atmosphere that
is very special, and that this sharing of God’s grace and mercy, also creates
special bonds. And, almost as a by-product of this, helps facilitate any agenda!
Psalm 22 ends with an image of God’s Lordship and Holy Rule that is global
and to all infinity, that is shared and totally accessible to all people and all things.
In humble thanks, we respond to this love: “...Then I will declare the wonder of
your name to my brothers and sisters.. I will praise you among all your people...”

Creative pause: Not only is God MY God, but also OUR God!

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.

*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:
© 2013 Joan Stott – ‘The Timeless Psalms’ RCL Psalms Year C. Used with permission.


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