SILENCE AND CENTERING (2 MINUTES)
Psalm 46:10 (NLT)
“Be still, and know that I am God I will be honored by every nation. I will be honored throughout the world.”
Eternal and Almighty God, You love us profoundly and deeply. As the richest and clearest sign of Your love, You gave Your Son, Jesus Christ, to provide new and eternal life for all who trust in Him. Your gracious desire is to save. Praise be Your Name! Yet we intentionally reject Your gift of love. Instead we choose actions, thoughts, and words rooted in spiritual darkness, not in Your light. We live as though we can save ourselves. We elevate a multitude of different possibilities for life though only You should be in our hearts, minds, and souls. Therefore we agree with Your Word when it states we often love the darkness more than the light. Convict us of our folly. Forgive us for our rebellion. Remind us of Your grace. Help our lives to be centered on Jesus Christ, our Savior and King, and His Good News for sinners like us. We pray in His Name. Amen.
4 The Lord God has given me the tongue of a teacher, that I may know how to sustain the weary with a word. Morning by morning he wakens— wakens my ear to listen as those who are taught. 5 The Lord God has opened my ear, and I was not rebellious, I did not turn backward. 6 I gave my back to those who struck me, and my cheeks to those who pulled out the beard; I did not hide my face from insult and spitting. 7 The Lord God helps me; therefore I have not been disgraced; therefore I have set my face like flint, and I know that I shall not be put to shame; 8 he who vindicates me is near. Who will contend with me? Let us stand up together. Who are my adversaries? Let them confront me. 9 It is the Lord God who helps me; who will declare me guilty? All of them will wear out like a garment; the moth will eat them up.
Let us pray for the whole Church of God in Christ Jesus and for all people according to their needs.
Lord God, heavenly Father, You have given Your beloved Son the tongue of those who are taught, that He may know how to sustain with a word him who is weary. Prosper in every place the preaching of His Word. By Your Spirit, enable Your pastors to proclaim it with clarity and joy, and by the same Spirit open the ears of Your children to believe it with gladness and be transformed by it. Lord, in Your mercy, hear our prayer.
Holy One, raise up new servants of Your Church who will dedicate their lives to the spread of Your Gospel. Lord, in Your mercy, hear our prayer.
Remember in kindness this congregation. Set our tongues free to bless You as our Lord and Father, and by Your Spirit free us from all cursing and complaining. Lord, in Your mercy, hear our prayer.
Father, in Your glory You teach us in Your Word to pray for all who are in authority, that we may lead lives of peace and godliness. Into Your hands, we commend all who have been entrusted with offices of public trust in our land. Grant to them all a share in Your wisdom, that they may serve with integrity and honor. Free our public discourse from the distraction of personal attacks, and help us all to use our tongues to explain our neighbor’s actions in the kindest way. Lord, in Your mercy, hear our prayer.
Eternal Father, Your Son healed many who suffered from frail and diseased bodies in His ministry, showing Your great compassion for us in our misery and pointing us toward the final healing that awaits His glorious return. Into His hands this day we commend all who are in need: the sick, the homebound, the lonely, the grieving, the discouraged, the anxious and the depressed. [We especially put into Your hands all we have been asked to remember at this altar: _______________.] Shower each one with Your compassion, and sustain their faith as they await Your will. Lord, in Your mercy, hear our prayer.
Loving One, in the Holy Eucharist we know Your Son, who vindicates us, is near. He comes to give us in His body and blood His saving righteousness, the forgiveness of all our sins. Give to all who come to His table today repentance and faith to welcome Him with joy, praying: Lord, I believe; help my unbelief. Lord, in Your mercy, hear our prayer.
Source of all, Life of all, receive our praise for those who have died trusting in Jesus Christ. Give us our portion with the saints in light, and bring us all to the day of resurrection joy. Lord, in Your mercy, hear our prayer.
Into Your hands, O Lord, we commend all for whom we pray, trusting in Your mercy, through Jesus Christ, our Lord. Amen.
27 Jesus went on with his disciples to the villages of Caesarea Philippi; and on the way he asked his disciples, “Who do people say that I am?” 28 And they answered him, “John the Baptist; and others, Elijah; and still others, one of the prophets.” 29 He asked them, “But who do you say that I am?” Peter answered him, “You are the Messiah.” 30 And he sternly ordered them not to tell anyone about him. 31 Then he began to teach them that the Son of Man must undergo great suffering, and be rejected by the elders, the chief priests, and the scribes, and be killed, and after three days rise again. 32 He said all this quite openly. And Peter took him aside and began to rebuke him. 33 But turning and looking at his disciples, he rebuked Peter and said, “Get behind me, Satan! For you are setting your mind not on divine things but on human things.” 34 He called the crowd with his disciples, and said to them, “If any want to become my followers, let them deny themselves and take up their cross and follow me. 35 For those who want to save their life will lose it, and those who lose their life for my sake, and for the sake of the gospel, will save it. 36 For what will it profit them to gain the whole world and forfeit their life? 37 Indeed, what can they give in return for their life? 38 Those who are ashamed of me and of my words in this adulterous and sinful generation, of them the Son of Man will also be ashamed when he comes in the glory of his Father with the holy angels.”
PAUSE FOR 2 MINUTES OF SILENCE
Pray The Our Father – Slowly
Our Father, who art in heaven,
hallowed be thy Name,
thy kingdom come,
thy will be done,
on earth as it is in heaven.
Give us this day our daily bread.
And forgive us our trespasses,
as we forgive those
who trespass against us.
And lead us not into temptation,
but deliver us from evil.
For thine is the kingdom,
and the power, and the glory,
for ever and ever. Amen.