A Call to Worship
Pentecost 18B [Ordinary 26B] or [Proper 21B] 2012
Psalm 124

We gather together in praise and worship of our Faithful God,
because our help and hope rests always in the Lord our God.
We bring our praises and thankful responses to our Saving God.

Blessed be the Lord our God, who is our security and home,
and whose mercy and grace frees us from all that traps us.
Blessings, reverent honour and glory be to the Lord our God.

We come together to praise worship our all-Powerful God,
because we are confident of God’s generous care over us.
Our eternal trust is in the name of the Lord our God,
who is our Maker, our Saviour, and our timeless Home. Amen.

Prayers of Trust and Praise
Pentecost 18B [Ordinary 26B] or [Proper 21B] 2012
Psalm 124

Trustworthy God, with one voice, we your people affirm our God
as our Helper and Sustainer, and our Rescuing and Renewing God.
Time after time you have come to our aid when we called out to your
holy name for support, encouragement, and even for our rescue
from all that entraps us, whether that trap is something physical,
mental or spiritual. Your compassionate ear and heart has been
attuned to our needs, and in humble praise, we affirm your goodness.

Constant God, we praise and thank you for your ever-willing help
when we are in trouble, and for your generosity in not abandoning
us to all we deserve, because of our foolishness. The Psalmist gives
us graphic descriptions of being overwhelmed by the tide of evil; or
the sinister and seductive traps that are set for gullible people. Yet
he also gives us images of an enduring and ever-loving God who
hears and answers our prayers; and we give thanks for this wisdom
of the ages, that has been tried and tested over many generations.

Preserving God, in trust we look to you for your continued involvement
with your entire creation - the work of God’s own hands - and that just
as you have rescued and saved us from the perils of our foolishness, we
pray that your whole creation will know the transforming power of God.
Free us, we pray, from all that binds us to past self-centred practices of
destroying your creation; from all that holds us back from responsible
care of your creation; and that an awareness of the fragility of creation
will be fostered, so that in partnership with our Maker, we can all work
together to develop sustainable practices for conservation of our planet.
“Our help is in the Lord our God, who made the heavens and the earth.” Amen.

A Personal Meditation
Pentecost 18B [Ordinary 26B] or [Proper 21B] 2012
Psalm 124

This Psalm is one of the few examples of the people of God
speaking with “one voice” as they “all together now”, gladly
acknowledged God’s saving and merciful grace! How often
could I claim that my congregation or my denomination all spoke
with “one voice”? That long-ago event must have been music
to the ears of God! Unfortunately, they are practices that are
seldom now repeated, yet our Unchanging God has not altered!

Creative pause: Our Unchanging God has not ever altered!

Why is it that we all seem to believe that we have the right and
privilege to choose what we will or will not believe about God?
Why is it that we also believe that we have the correct beliefs,
and everyone else is either wrong or confused? Why cannot we
all speak with “one voice” on important issues of faith and belief?
I give thanks for the many inter-denominational faith dialogues
that continue year after year, and for the good will experienced at
these meetings. I also thank God for the many people prepared to
commit themselves to these dialogues, in the hope that eventually,
all people will speak with “one voice” when accepting God’s guidance
and blessing, as they together, praise and thank our Forgiving God.

Creative pause: I give thanks for inter-denominational faith dialogues.

We live in a very independent world, where people seem to believe
in the “virtue” in always being able to manage on their own, and that
they do not “need” anyone else to help them, or even perhaps, to
change them and possibly make them a “better” person! Why is it that
it is all right to work together in a regional or national emergency, and
in fact, rejoice in the spirit of our sharing and caring community; but
that when the emergency is over, we go back to our selfish isolation?
I am as guilty as anyone else on that issue, and it is a good lesson to
learn when we discover that it is not so, and that we are instead, very
blessed by being part of a sharing and supportive community! This
same sense of selfish isolation can occur in our relationship with God,
and we think that we have what it takes to weather all of life’s storms!
No so!! We are like “babes in the wood” when we come adrift from our
Guiding and Saving God, and when you and I learn that difficult lesson—
we are well on the way to becoming a person who is learning to speak
with “one voice” to and for God, amongst desperately lonely peoples.

Creative pause: The “virtue” in always being able to manage on one’s own?

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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