A Call to Worship
Pentecost 17B [Ordinary 25B] or [Proper 20B] 2012
Psalm 1

Watching God, we come to worship you and give thanks that you
are our God, and we delight in our commitments to and for you.
With joy we gather together before our God, trusting that God
will nurture and nourish us in the ways of Godly loving and living.

Creating God, you are the Breath of Life, and you breathe into
us new life, and a deep awareness of God’s constant presence.
Holy God, you call us to live as symbols of the fullness of life
and joy found in following God’s rules for love, life and living.

Guiding God, we come to praise and worship you, for the way
you lead us into paths where we learn of you and your mercy.
We gather this day to affirm our beliefs in the God who guides
and blesses all those who seek to worship and serve our God. Amen.

Prayers of Praise and Trust
Pentecost 17B [Ordinary 25B] or [Proper 20B] 2012
Psalm 1

Ever-present God, you are our steadfast Protector, our Guide,
and our Guardian as you tenderly care for and sustain our beings.
You walk with us, teaching and encouraging us to learn your
rules for life and community living; and we praise and thank
you for these blessings, for they are trustworthy and reliable.
We praise and thank you that we can turn to you at any time,
knowing that as we seek to follow you, we bring joy to the Lord.

Unchanging God, we come to you knowing we can trust you to
always be the same – always loving, always merciful, and always
forgiving. Each day, we are in need of your strength, because we
are so easily distracted by fleeting concepts and new things that
appear to be relevant or useful; but which often become a trap—
leading us away the Godly paths of being part of a caring and
sharing community. You are our hope, O God, and we trust you
to lead us back to your ways, so that we may worship you each day.

Nurturing God, we give thanks that you encourage us to be strong
and resolute like sturdy trees that bend in the wind, but do not break;
you call us to be fruit-bearers so that we may nourish others with
the goodness that you cultivate within us; and you invite us to
become places of shelter for people who are stressed by life and
its challenges and difficulties. Faithful God, we ask that we may
always be reliable and caring members of our community, so that
other people will also want to open their lives to God’s influences,
and become strong and committed to living in God’s love and grace. Amen.

A Personal Meditation
Pentecost 17B [Ordinary 25B] or [Proper 20B] 2012
Psalm 1

Creating God, I am so grateful that in the great wisdom of God,
that Creative Spirit chose to create trees in so many shapes,
sizes, textures and colours; and with so many different leaves,
flowers and fruits! I love the gentle green of the new leaves
in Spring; the shelter those leaves give in the heat of summer;
and in many instances, the colours of the leaves as they die—
and then fall to the earth to renew and nourish mother earth.
Other trees just seem to replace their old leaves with new ones
as are required, so that they stay the same colour all the time.

Creative pause: God’s creative wisdom in giving us trees to love.

I have learned so much from trees as their life cycles often mirror
our own life experiences. When tree roots become damaged from
a variety of causes, the tree may struggle and never again be quite
the same, but it is still a tree fulfilling its purpose in life. Some trees
have damaged trunks which inhibits the life-flow of its sap, and they
grow spindly and misshapen, or even fragile, and may never reach
maturity. Other trees have roots reaching deep into the soil, and grow
strong and beautiful as they live in ideal circumstances. The Psalmist
likened Godly people to trees with their roots deep in God’s love, who
are sustained and strengthened by the life-giving flow of God’s grace.
People who miss out on these mercies of God, either through choices
or their circumstances, are like the trees with damaged roots or trunks.
They are alive, but not fulfilling their true function as God’s children,
and their output of leaves for shelter or fruit for nourishment is limited.

Creative pause: The life-cycle of a tree often mirrors our own – what can we learn?

Just as trees have growth rings in their trunks showing their level of
maturity, my prayer is that I too will have visible signs of my maturity
in my life of faith and witness to my gracious and loving Lord. I pray too,
that my witness will be as beautiful as are the trees of the forests, and
that the flowers and fruit of my spiritual maturity will bring sweetness to
people lives; nourishment for their souls; and so be a source of comfort
and compassion to people whom I meet and with whom I live each day.

Creative pause: I pray that I may have visible signs of my spiritual maturity.

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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