A Call to Worship
Pentecost 22A [Ordinary 33A] or [Proper 28A] 2011
Psalm 123

Great and Glorious God, we gather to worship you.
We lift our eyes to you, in reverent awe before your majesty.
Great is the Lord our God, and greatly to be praised!

Generous and Merciful God, we come to worship you.
We lift our eyes to you, giving thanks for your compassion.
Gracious is the Lord our God, and greatly to be praised!

Welcoming and Empowering God, we worship you.
We lift our eyes to you, and we celebrate your faithfulness.
Holy is the Lord our God, and greatly to be praised!
We lift our eyes, seeking to worship and praise our God. Amen.

Prayers of Petition and Trust
Pentecost 22A [Ordinary 33A] or [Proper 28A] 2011
Psalm 123

Great God enthroned in glory, individually and collectively we look
up to you, with a mixture of anxiety and trust in our hearts and minds.
We look to you O God, seeking your merciful blessing as we journey
on our pilgrimage home to you. We also lift up to you our wide open
hearts and minds to perceive this world’s wonders, that speak to us
of your Everlasting Presence, and your loving compassion and care.

Holy God, high above all worlds, all life, all things and all creatures—
we your children are struggling with living in a world that rejects you,
and which scorns us for our faith and trust in you. We gather together
as one people to share our concerns with the One in whom we trust,
based on our knowledge that generations have experienced God’s
merciful kindness. We are harassed and tormented by arrogant people
who think they know all there is to know about life; but they do not know
you or acknowledge you, so how can they know anything about living
and being a part of God’s purposes for God’s peoples and for God’s world?

Empowering God, we seek to love and serve you within the hope and
confidence we have in you, knowing that we are God’s beloved children.
You have called and challenged us to faithfully follow your commands,
and to be risk-takers, as we seek to live within the promises that you have
given to us. Each day we look to you, and to the people you have placed
around us, to lead us on in our life’s pilgrimage. We acknowledge that whilst
we have often failed to be faithful to you—you have never failed or forgotten
us. Therefore, in renewed confidence and trust in you, we continue on our
life’s journey towards our everlasting home in your Glorious Presence. Amen.

A Personal Meditation
Pentecost 22A [Ordinary 33A] or [Proper 28A] 2011
Psalm 123

Holy God, it seems to be a natural instinct for me to lift up my eyes
whenever I think about you, and whenever I seek your presence and
guidance. You are so far above me in so many ways. In your loving;
your creative powers; your holiness and your faithfulness; it is truly
impossible to list your mysterious attributes and wonders, your powers
and majesty – any such list would be never ending, and still incomplete!

Creative pause: It is a natural instinct to look up to God.

Just like the long-ago pilgrims as they climbed the slopes leading up to
Zion – their ancient place of the worship of God, as I climbed up to the
highest point I have ever been, so I too seemed to be moving ever closer
to God. There on the top of mountain ranges - as part of the Great Wall
of China - God seemed to be so close, so accessible! Even in places
where God is not always recognised or worshiped, God’s presence there
seemed to be so real, like being enveloped in a warm comforting blanket!

Creative pause: Is it an illusion that the higher we climb the closer we are to God?

With shame, I admit that there is always the temptation for me to be so
involved on lifting my eyes towards God, that I fail to see God’s world
around me, with all its needs and problems, and its rejection of God and
God’s ways. My eyes also need to remain open so that I can see and
experience the scorn and disdain that whirls around me; all of which
remind me of my responsibility to continue to share the good news of
God’s love and compassion; of God’s dependability and faithfulness;
and of God’s grace and gentle forgiveness. But being totally human, I
admit that I am often hurt by those people who scoff at my efforts to share
with them my faith and trust in God, and the importance of worship of God.

Creative pause: Ensuring that my eyes are not blinkered!

Have mercy on me O my God, and give me the courage to keep lifting
my eyes to you, but to also keep my sights on the your world around me.

Creative pause: A dual focus for my eyes – God and God’s world!

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:
© 2011 Joan Stott – ‘The Timeless Psalms’ RCL Psalms Year A. Used with permission.


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