A Call to Worship
Pentecost 20A [Ordinary 30A] or [Proper 25A] 2014
Psalm 90: 1-6, 13-17

“Our God, our help in ages past...”1 In trust, we come today to worship God.
“You are my hiding place you always fill my heart with songs of deliverance.”2

“Our God, our help in ages past...”
1 In hope, we come today to worship God.
“Whenever I am afraid I will trust in you. I will trust in you; I will trust in you...”2

“Our God, our help in ages past...”
1 In anticipation of God’s gracious blessing—
we come to pray and praise our Liberating God, who blesses and reassures us.
“You are my hiding place you always fill my heart with songs of deliverance.
Whenever I am afraid I will trust in you. I will trust in you; I will trust in you...”
2 Amen.

Psalm 90: 1-6, 13-17

1 Lord, through all the generations you have been our home!

2 Before the mountains were born, before you gave birth
to the earth and the world, from beginning to end, you are God.
3 You turn people back to dust, saying, “Return to dust, you mortals!”
4 For you, a thousand years are as a passing day,
as brief as a few night hours.

5 You sweep people away like dreams that disappear.
They are like grass that springs up in the morning.
6 In the morning it blooms and flourishes,
but by evening it is dry and withered.

13 O Lord, come back to us!
How long will you delay? Take pity on your servants!
14 Satisfy us each morning with your unfailing love,
so we may sing for joy to the end of our lives.
15 Give us gladness in proportion to our former misery!
Replace the evil years with good.

16 Let us, your servants, see you work again;
let our children see your glory.
17 And may the Lord our God show us his approval
and make our efforts successful. Yes, make our efforts successful!

Prayers of Lament and Petition
Pentecost 20A [Ordinary 30A] or [Proper 25A] 2014
Psalm 90: 1-6, 13-17

Holy and Loving God, you have been our “true home” all our life, if we but
accept and cherish that fact! Yet O God, how often do we act as if we are
homeless orphans, with no one to turn to for help! Why do we try to separate
ourselves from the God of all compassion? Why do we not trust in God’s
ageless promises? In times long past, God’s message to his troubled people
was: “...Even if that were possible, I would not forget you! See, I have written
your name on the palms of my hands…”
3 Help us, we pray Caring God, to
stay “at home” with you all our life and to fill our life with your love and mercy.

Creating God, our life-span is so short in comparison to the timelessness of
God’s glory; and in reality, we are of very little real significance in the large
picture of all that you have created and continue to create; yet in your mercy
and love you have claimed us as your own special children, and we thank you
for this. Give us we pray, the wisdom to understand that it is not the quantity
but the quality of our living and worship-life that brings glory to your name!
In the circumstances of our often pain-filled lives, we come to you, “God of
all power, and truth, and grace, which shall from age to age endure, whose
word, when heaven and earth shall pass, remains and stands for ever sure…”

Welcoming God, we give thanks for the understanding you gift us with, that we
are your children “at home” in your loving and accepting presence. Help us, as
individuals to pray and live: “…that I your mercy may proclaim that all the world
your truth may see, hallow your great and glorious name, and perfect holiness
in me…’ and finally “ enter into the promised rest the Canaan of your perfect love!”
Whilst Canaan was the long-promised “place” for God’s people, their eternal “home”
was always and will always be in God’s holy presence. O God, in your steadfast
love, transform our limited image of our human life into an ability to catch a vision
of the reality God’s plan for all creation - including our own humanity - so that we can
rejoice in God’s covenantal promises that never fail or fade away from existence. Amen.

A Personal Meditation
Pentecost 20A [Ordinary 30A] or [Proper 25A] 2014
Psalm 90: 1-6, 13-17

“Lord, through all the generations you have been our home!” The word “Home”
is very evocative, and I thought about what “home” really means to me – with all
its many facets. “Home” is the house and the family within it where I grew up; it
is the small town in rural Victoria where I went to school and started work; and
where both my parents are buried. “Home” is also where I have lived since my
marriage; where I raised a family and gone through the traumas of divorce; where
I shared the pain of both my two daughters having had breast cancer; and where
I have lived as a single parent for nearly forty years. “Home” is the church community
that nurtured me; but it is also where I have been part of another community of faith
for almost sixty years. “Home” is my garden and my computer, where I can express
myself in multiple ways and be who I really am. And finally, “Home” is where I am
me, myself - who I really am – warts and all – before my loving and forgiving God;
and for me, that is my true “home” where I am so lovingly accepted and blessed.

Creative pause: What does “home” mean to you?

“Lord, through all the generations you have been our home!” I have been so very
fortunate to be able to make this claim, as for many generations, both sides of my
parents’ families have loved and served God in many different lowly and high-profile
ways. My heritage is a very rich and blessed one, and I give thanks to God for this
great blessing. Yet the challenge facing every generation is for each one of them to
personally choose to love and serve God. Each of us can only set an example and
provide the environment where those choices are encouraged and prayerfully nurtured.

Creative pause: What is the “best” environment for a child to encourage faith in God?

“Lord, through all the generations you have been our home!” Despite the positive tone
of the opening verse, Psalm 90 is a lament in a time of crisis! The people of Israel had
come together to mourn their current situation; and they looked back to Moses, when,
in their many times of self-imposed trouble, Moses led and guided them back to God—
and they were rescued from their troubles. They cried: “Lord, through all the generations
you have been our home.....!”
and they closed their lament thus: “...And may the Lord
our God show us his approval and make our efforts successful...”
Their petition to God
probably echoes many of our own prayers when “things in life have gone wrong...” and
we feel helpless without the support, encouragement and guidance of God! “Our God,
our help in ages past ... our shelter from the stormy blast and our eternal home ...
remain our guard while troubles last, and our eternal home.”
1 O Lord, I give thanks for
the many “home” influences in my life that together, have helped to form the person I am!

Creative pause: What would be your Prayer of Petition to God in times of trouble?

1 From “Together in Song” #47
“Our God, our help in ages past
Words by Isaac Watts
Words in the Public Domain

2 From “Together in Song” #754
“You are my hiding place”
Words by Michael Ledner 1981-
Used with Permission,
Word of Life International Licence #2425

3 Isaiah 49: 16 (NLT)

4 From “Together in Song” #567
“God of all power, and truth, and grace”
Words by Charles Wesley (alt)
Words in the Public Domain

Unless otherwise indicated, all Scripture quotations are taken from the Holy Bible, New Living Translation,
copyright © 1996, 2004, 2007, 2013 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.

*Revised Indexing Scheme from 'Consultation on Church Union' (COCU).

I acknowledge and give heartfelt thanks for the theological inspiration available from the writings of
Professor Walter Brueggemann; and through the resources from the internet and “The Text this Week” (Textweek).

If the Prayers and/or Meditations are used in shared worship, please provide this acknowledgement:
© 2014 Joan Stott – ‘The Timeless Psalms’ RCL Psalms Year A. Used with permission.


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