Comfort Ye, Comfort Ye my People

Prayer Service, Wednesday, 9 December 2020

Comfort ye, Comfort Ye My People

Greeting & Call to Prayer

The blessing of the good news of Jesus Christ be with us all!

Lift up your voice with strength,
O herald of good tidings.

1The wilderness and the dry land shall rejoice, 
the desert shall blossom and burst into song.

2They shall see the glory of the Lord, 
the majesty of our God.

3Strengthen the weary hands, 
and make firm the feeble knees.

4Say to the anxious, ‘Be strong, fear not,
your God is coming with judgement, 
coming with judgement to save you.’

5Then shall the eyes of the blind be opened, 
and the ears of the deaf unstopped;

6Then shall the lame leap like a hart, 
and the tongue of the dumb sing for joy.

7For waters shall break forth in the wilderness, 
and streams in the desert;

8The ransomed of the Lord shall return with singing, 
with everlasting joy upon their heads.

9Joy and gladness shall be theirs, 
and sorrow and sighing shall flee away.

 Glory to the Father and to the Son
and to the Holy Spirit;
as it was in the beginning is now
and shall be for ever. Amen.

 Lift up your voice with strength,
O herald of good tidings.

 Hymn Comfort ye, Every Valley, Gramophone Chorus w/ Ebenezer ANTWI

https://youtu.be/83jCTO8N0K4

Isaiah 40:25-31

25 “To whom will you compare me?
Or who is my equal?” says the Holy One.
26 Lift up your eyes and look to the heavens:
Who created all these?
He who brings out the starry host one by one
and calls forth each of them by name.
Because of his great power and mighty strength,
not one of them is missing.

27 Why do you complain, Jacob?
Why do you say, Israel,
“My way is hidden from the Lord;
my cause is disregarded by my God”?
28 Do you not know?
Have you not heard?
The Lord is the everlasting God,
the Creator of the ends of the earth.
He will not grow tired or weary,
and his understanding no one can fathom.
29 He gives strength to the weary
and increases the power of the weak.
30 Even youths grow tired and weary,
and young men stumble and fall;
31 but those who hope in the Lord
will renew their strength.
They will soar on wings like eagles;
they will run and not grow weary,
they will walk and not be faint.

Matthew 11:28-end

28 “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. 29 Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. 30 For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.”

Hymn: Wait for the Lord

Wait for the Lord, whose day is near.  Wait for the Lord.  Be strong, take heart. Taizé

Prayer

The Lord’s Prayer

Collect

O Lord, raise up, we pray, your power
and come among us,
and with great might succour us;
that whereas, through our sins and wickedness
we are grievously hindered
in running the race that is set before us,
your bountiful grace and mercy
may speedily help and deliver us;
through Jesus Christ your Son our Lord,
to whom with you and the Holy Spirit,
be honour and glory, now and for ever.Amen.

Hymn 493 O Come O Come Emmanuel

Our Lord says, ‘I am coming soon.’

          Amen. Come, Lord Jesus.

May the Lord, when he comes,

find us watching and waiting.

          Amen. May it be so.

Go in peace to love and serve The Lord

In the name of Christ Amen.

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Life’s most important questions

This is a special message from Fran Sciacca in the US 

“Black Friday” Without a Credit Card!

I hope your Thanksgiving was safe and still meaningful. Finding the balance between safety, sanity, and tradition is going to be a delicate dance for a while, I’m afraid.

One of the recently established traditions in America is the battleground commonly known as “Black Friday.” It’s a time when Americans have internal battles about whether or not they want to fight the external battles of shopping in an arena where helmets and elbow pads may very likely become recommended shopping attire! Personally, I’m not a fan of full-contact shopping.

So, I wanted to let you know that I’ve added some more resources to the website, but unlike most Black Friday items, you won’t need a credit card to access or obtain them. And you won’t have to leave home, or generate more cardboard with “Prime” inked on it. Seamless, digital delivery to your laptop or device. How’s that for something to be thankful for? 🙂 And…no cost!

Just a week or so ago, I delivered three messages to students at Yale University (via Zoom) on the topic, “Life’s Three Most Important Questions.” Those three videos are now available, if you’d like something to watch over the holidays besides Netflix.

I am also continuing my commitment to make the individual character studies I wrote over the years available to you for personal or group study. I’ve added five more, bringing the total available to 20. More will be coming in 2021. The new ones are:

  • Barnabas – The powerful ministry of encouragement
  • Paul – Dealing with our past
  • The Nation of Israel – The myth of nostalgia
  • Jeremiah – Longing to be successful
  • Jesus – Handling rejection

The videos may be accessed here, and the Bible studies are here.

 

Warmly in the Lamb,

Fran Sciacca

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A prayer for peace

18 November 2020

Commemoration for Elizabeth of Hungary, 1231

Psalm 150

Praise the Lord.[a]

Praise God in his sanctuary;
    praise him in his mighty heavens.
Praise him for his acts of power;
praise him for his surpassing greatness.
Praise him with the sounding of the trumpet,
    praise him with the harp and lyre,
praise him with timbrel and dancing,
praise him with the strings and pipe,
praise him with the clash of cymbals,
praise him with resounding cymbals.

Let everything that has breath praise the Lord.

Praise the Lord.

 

Hymn: Praise to the Lord the Almighty

https://youtu.be/0JvCmvlm-Qg

Revelation 4, The Throne in Heaven

After this I looked, and there before me was a door standing open in heaven. And the voice I had first heard speaking to me like a trumpet said, “Come up here, and I will show you what must take place after this.” At once I was in the Spirit, and there before me was a throne in heaven with someone sitting on it. And the one who sat there had the appearance of jasper and ruby. A rainbow that shone like an emerald encircled the throne. Surrounding the throne were twenty-four other thrones, and seated on them were twenty-four elders. They were dressed in white and had crowns of gold on their heads. From the throne came flashes of lightning, rumblings and peals of thunder. In front of the throne, seven lamps were blazing. These are the seven spirits[a] of God. Also in front of the throne there was what looked like a sea of glass, clear as crystal.

In the center, around the throne, were four living creatures, and they were covered with eyes, in front and in back. The first living creature was like a lion, the second was like an ox, the third had a face like a man, the fourth was like a flying eagle. Each of the four living creatures had six wings and was covered with eyes all around, even under its wings. Day and night they never stop saying:

“‘Holy, holy, holy

is the Lord God Almighty,’[b]

who was, and is, and is to come.”

Whenever the living creatures give glory, honor and thanks to him who sits on the throne and who lives for ever and ever, 10 the twenty-four elders fall down before him who sits on the throne and worship him who lives for ever and ever. They lay their crowns before the throne and say:

11 “You are worthy, our Lord and God,
to receive glory and honor and power,
for you created all things,
and by your will they were created
and have their being.”

 

Holy Holy Holy

https://youtu.be/i6DBlqFbBhw

 

Romans 8:37b-39

37b  We are more than conquerors through him who loved us. 38 For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons,[a] neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, 39 neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.

Meditation:  As our eyes turn heavenward, our perspective changes.  Reality is not just what is before us today.  Speak out loud Paul’s words in Romans 8:38-39.  Say them again.  Memorise them.  Hold them in your heart.  Carry them with you into the world.

 

Open Prayer

 

The Lord’s Prayer is said

Collect 

Lord God,
who taught Elizabeth of Hungary
to recognize and reverence Christ in the poor of this world:
by her example
strengthen us to love and serve the afflicted and the needy
and so to honour your Son, the servant king,
who is alive and reigns with you,
in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
one God, now and for ever. Amen.

 

Hymn, The Blessing

https://youtu.be/QnC7z03QkEM

 

Iona Blessing

Deep peace of running wave to you.

Deep peace of the flowing air to you.

Deep peace of the quiet earth to you.

Deep peace of the shining stars to you.

Deep peace of the infinite peace to you.

 

 

 

 

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