A Call to Worship
Pentecost 19B [Ordinary 27B] or [Proper 22B] 2012
Psalm 26

Holy God, it is with joy that we gather in your sanctuary to
sing and pray in honour and praise of our Glorious God.
In reverent awe, we come to claim our place in God’s family.

Generous God, you have showered your love upon us,
and we give thanks for this wonderful gift and blessing.
We are conscious of living in a world of sin and evil, and
we come to this beloved place to find peace and joy in God.

We come in worship, confident that we have been forgiven
of our sin, and cleansed by the merciful grace of our God.
Declare us innocent O God, for we have always tried to live
with integrity, and so we publicly praise and honour our God. Amen.

Prayers of Petition and Trust
Pentecost 19B [Ordinary 27B] or [Proper 22B] 2012
Psalm 26

Awe-inspiring God, we come before you in prayer aware that our God
has been merciful by healing and forgiving us of our sin; and that gives
us the confidence to come together to pray and sing with joy in God’s
holy sanctuary. We come in trust and expectation of a blessing from God—
because we have sincerely tried each day to be a faithful follower of our
just and peace-giving God. We come to worship God, filled with a deep
awareness of the way God is our Quiet Centre, our Focus and our Hope
in our daily lives, lived in a sin-filled and often evil community and world.

Trustworthy God, examine our lives, and test our motives and actions to
help us understand that to live in God’s way of justice, love and peace—
we always need to be very sure of our standing before in God. Then we can
with confidence, publicly express our convictions about the importance of
living faithfully and honestly within the presence of our Redeeming and
Renewing God. We pray that we may be strengthened to resist the powers
of wicked and unscrupulous manipulators who are always ready to take
advantage of vulnerable people, and that we may be empowered by God’s
grace to resist these temptations. Help us always to be aware of God’s
love and mercy, and each day, to trust in the presence of our Reliable God.

Grace-giving God, we come together in worship and praise, singing songs
to celebrate God’s unfailing love and sharing in the miracles of God’s grace. Amen.

A Personal Meditation
Pentecost 19B [Ordinary 27B] or [Proper 22B] 2012
Psalm 26

This Psalm highlights a personal dilemma for me, as I struggle with
the concept of people bragging or boasting about the depth of their
intimate prayer life with God, and how God has chosen them as a
“special one” for God’s ministry in the world. As opposed to that
concept, I believe and personally claim that I can be confident in
God’s grace and mercy towards me, after a life-time of experiencing
those gifts; and that that is not something that is specific only to me!
Quoting from “Today’s quote” by Jonathan Edwards**: “A true love of
God must begin with a delight in his holiness, and not with a delight
in any other attribute; for no other attribute is truly lovely without this.”
The Psalmist like Job said: “Declare me innocent, O LORD, for I have
acted with integrity; I have trusted in the LORD without wavering.”

Am I wrong for considering one’s “speciality” in God’s sight as irreverent
boasting, and their claims that “they” have a higher status with God?

Creative pause: I claim and try to live confidently in God’s grace towards me.

Although the Psalmist claimed his innocence and trust in God, he
immediately followed this claim up with these words: “Put me on
trial, LORD, and cross-examine me. Test my motives and affections,
for I am constantly aware of your unfailing love, and I have lived
according to your truth...... I do what is right. So in your mercy,
save me. I have taken a stand, and I will publicly praise the LORD.”

I am comfortable with that confident reliance on God, as I do not
interpret that as bragging or boasting. The Psalms are so challenging!

Creative pause: I find the Psalms are so very challenging!

The Jewish people’s Holiness Laws that required a special style of
hand washing prior to worship also helped to keep them fit and well!
Our hands touch all manner of things every day, and the concept of
deliberately cleansing my hands in preparation for coming to God in
worship, is an encouragement to think about what I am really preparing
to do. It is also recognition of our need to be ready and open when
coming in worship and praise of our All-Loving and All-Forgiving God!

Creative pause: How well to I prepare myself before worshipping God?

** Jonathon Edwards (1703-1758) was a theologian and one of the USA’s greatest intellectuals.
Words are in the Public Domain.

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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