February 28, 2021 Worship

2nd Sunday in Lent

Download the Worship Bulletin Here

 

We Gather      

 

CENTERING WORDS

God’s voice names us in holy love.

Christ’s voice chastens us when we go astray.

The Spirit’s voice draws us back to the paths of righteousness.

Thanks be to God!

 

PRELUDE  

 

WELCOME and CALL TO WORSHIP

Please join me in the Call to Worship.

From generation to generation, God names us and claims us. 

Blessed be the Lord, our God.

When we try to tell God what to do, Christ chastens us 

and leads us back onto the paths of life.

Let all who draw breath come back to the Lord.

From our earliest steps, the Spirit guides our steps 

and sets before us the ways of life and death.

Let the faithful rejoice in the mysteries of our God.

From generation to generation, God names us and claims us.

Let heaven and earth praise God’s holy name.

 

OPENING HYMN    To Abraham and Sarah No. 51

(Because the singing of hymns is discouraged during this period of pandemic, you are invited to hum or meditate on the verses below.)

 

To Abraham and Sarah the call of God was clear:

“Go forth and I will show you a country rich and fair.

You need not fear the journey, for I have pledged my word

that you shall be my people and I will be your God.”

 

From Abraham and Sarah arose a pilgrim race,

dependent for their journey on God’s abundant grace;

and in their heart was written by God this saving word,

“That you shall be my people and I will be your God.”

 

We of this generation on whom God’s hand is laid

can journey to the future secure and unafraid,

rejoicing in God’s goodness and trusting in this word,

“That you shall be my people and I will be your God.”

 

CALL TO PRAYERS

Given a test on our faith, would we have a passing grade?  Looking at our lives of discipleship, would we be considered good models for others?  When we fail to trust God, we discover that we do indeed lead barren lives.  Let us be honest as we stand before our God, and bring our confessions for forgiveness and hope.

 

PRAYERS OF APPROACH & CONFESSION

Spirit of the ages, name us and claim us according to your purposes, as you once called Abram and Sarai long ago.

Train our ears to hear your call, and 

tune our hearts to open at the sound of your voice.

As we pick up our cross to follow you, raise us to newness of life. 

For you call us to be children of your covenant, 

heirs with your Son, and disciples of your grace.

 

Silence

 

Name above all names, visit us in our dreams and shake us from our waking nightmares. For we are tired of stumbling in the dark, blindly following human teachings and placidly heeding human advice.

When we lose our way and wander from your path, 

we need your love to heal us 

and your grace to complete us.

When the forces of destruction close around us, 

grant us the strength to follow Christ. 

Love us back onto the right paths 

and restore us to life, 

through your faithful and transforming love. Amen.

 

ASSURANCE OF GOD WITH US

By saying no to ourselves, and picking up our cross, we find ourselves. By saying yes to the good news of Christ’s spirit, we find faith and wholeness. Thanks be to God.

 

SHARING THE PEACE OF CHRIST

As followers of Christ, let us pick up our cross and follow him, even when the road is long. On this journey, let us draw strength from one another as we share signs of grace and peace.

The peace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you!

And also with you.

 

We Reflect

 

CHILDREN’S MESSAGE

 

PRAYER FOR ILLUMINATION

Let us pray. 

Open your good news to us, O God, and open us to your good news, that we may find ourselves in your abundant life. 

Speak, Lord, and help us to listen. Amen.

 

SCRIPTURE LESSON Genesis 17:1-7, 15-16

 

SCRIPTURE LESSON Mark 8:31-38

 

SERMON Rev. Kathryn R. Mustaro

 

The Call to Discipleship

 

We Respond

 

PRAYERS OF THE PEOPLE

Lord in your mercy/in thanksgiving,

Hear our prayer.

 

OUR GIFTS OF SACRIFICE and THANKSGIVING  

Invitation

The psalmist proclaims that creation will remember and return to God. As those blessed to be a blessing to others, may we return to God with the gifts of our hands and hearts.

 

Thank you for sending your offerings. 

They make a great difference to our church’s work in the world.

  

Musical Meditation 

 

Prayer of Dedication

Let us pray. God of manifold blessings, bless our lives to your service even as we consecrate these gifts in service of a world in need. May our offering go forth this day, and be a reflection of your glory for all who struggle to know your ways. As these gifts go forth to do your work, may they help others hear your voice as you call their names. In the spirit of your grace and peace, we pray. Amen.

 

We Are Sent 

 

CLOSING HYMN       Take Up Your Cross No. 718

(You are invited to hum or meditate on the verses below.)

 

Take up your cross, the Savior said,

if you would my disciple be;

take up your cross with willing heart,

and humbly follow after me.

 

Take up your cross; let not its weight

fill your weak spirit with alarm;

Christ's strength shall bear your spirit up

and brace your heart and nerve your arm.

 

Take up your cross; heed not the shame,

and let your foolish pride be still;

the Lord for you accepted death

upon a cross, on Calvary's hill.

 

Take up your cross, then, in Christ's strength,

and calmly every danger brave:

it guides you to abundant life

and leads to victory o'er the grave.

 

BENEDICTION

 

POSTLUDE        

 

All songs not in the public domain are used by permission of CCLI #1124594.