Worship Order for Wednesday, February 17, 2021

GATHERING

The Holy Spirit calls us together as the people of God.

The Lord be with you.

And also with you.

PRAYER OF THE DAY 

Let us pray. 

Almighty and ever-living God, you hate nothing you have made, and you forgive the sins of all who are penitent. Create in us new and honest hearts, so that, truly repenting of our sins, we may receive from you, the God of all mercy, full pardon and forgiveness through your Son, Jesus Christ, our Savior and Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever.

Amen.

Song 

Be Thou My Vision

1        Be thou my vision, O Lord of my heart;

        naught be all else to me, save that thou art:

        thou my best thought both by day and by night,

        waking or sleeping, thy presence my light.

2        Be thou my wisdom, and thou my true word;

        I ever with thee and thou with me, Lord.

        Thou my soul’s shelter, and thou my high tow’r,

        raise thou me heav’nward, O Pow’r of my pow’r.

3        Riches I heed not, nor vain, empty praise,

        thou mine inheritance, now and always:

        thou and thou only, the first in my heart,

        great God of heaven, my treasure thou art.

4        Light of my soul, after victory won,

        may I reach heaven’s joys, O heaven’s Sun!

        Heart of my own heart, whatever befall,

        still be my vision, O Ruler of all.

Text: Irish, 8th cent.; vers. Eleanor H. Hull, 1860-1935, alt.; tr. Mary E. Byrne, 1880-1931

WORD

FIRST READING: Joel 2:1-2, 12-17

The reading may be announced: 

A reading from Joel.

Because of the coming day of the Lord, the prophet Joel calls the people to a community lament. The repentant community declares that God is gracious and asks God to spare the people lest the nations doubt God’s power to save.

1Blow the trumpet in Zion;

  sound the alarm on my holy mountain!

 Let all the inhabitants of the land tremble,

  for the day of the Lord is coming, it is near—

2a day of darkness and gloom,

  a day of clouds and thick darkness!

 Like blackness spread upon the mountains

  a great and powerful army comes;

 their like has never been from of old,

  nor will be again after them

  in ages to come.

12Yet even now, says the Lord,

  return to me with all your heart,

 with fasting, with weeping, and with mourning;

  13rend your hearts and not your clothing.

 Return to the Lord, your God,

  for he is gracious and merciful,

 slow to anger, and abounding in steadfast love,

  and relents from punishing.

14Who knows whether he will not turn and relent,

  and leave a blessing behind him,

 a grain offering and a drink offering

  for the Lord, your God?

15Blow the trumpet in Zion;

  sanctify a fast;

 call a solemn assembly;

  16gather the people.

 Sanctify the congregation;

  assemble the aged;

 gather the children,

  even infants at the breast.

 Let the bridegroom leave his room,

  and the bride her canopy.

17Between the vestibule and the altar

  let the priests, the ministers of the Lord, weep.

 Let them say, “Spare your people, O Lord,

  and do not make your heritage a mockery,

  a byword among the nations.

 Why should it be said among the peoples,

  ‘Where is their God?’ ”

The word of the Lord.

Thanks be to God.

Psalm                                   Psalm 51:1-11

Sing: Create in me a clean heart, O God,

and renew a right spirit within me.

Create in me a clean heart, O God,

and renew a right spirit within me.

   Reader: Have mercy on me, O God, according to your steadfast love; according to your abundant mercy blot out my transgressions.

   All:         Wash me thoroughly from my iniquity, and cleanse me from my sin.

   Reader:For I know my transgressions, and my sin is ever before  me.

   All:         Against you, you alone, have I sinned, and done what is evil in your sight, so that you are justified in your sentence and blameless when you pass judgment.

   Reader: Indeed, I was born guilty, a sinner when my mother conceived me.

Song: Create in me a clean heart, O God,

and renew a right spirit within me.

Create in me a clean heart, O God,

and renew a right spirit within me.

   Reader: You desire truth in the inward being; therefore, teach me wisdom in my secret heart.

   All:         Purge me with hyssop, and I shall be clean; wash me, and I shall be whiter than snow.

   Reader:  Let me hear joy and gladness; let the bones that you have crushed rejoice.

   All:         Hide your face from my sins, and blot out all my iniquities.

   Reader:  Create in me a clean heart, O God, and put a new and  right spirit within me.

   All:         Do not cast me away from your presence, and do not take your holy spirit from me.

Song: Create in me a clean heart, O God,

and renew a right spirit within me.

Cast me not away from your presence,

and take not your Holy Spirit from me.

Restore unto me the joy of your salvation,

and uphold me with your free Spirit.

SECOND READING: 2 Corinthians 5:20b–6:10

A reading from 2 Corinthians.

20bWe entreat you on behalf of Christ, be reconciled to God. 21For our sake he made him to be sin who knew no sin, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.

6:1As we work together with him, we urge you also not to accept the grace of God in vain. 2For he says, 

 “At an acceptable time I have listened to you,

  and on a day of salvation I have helped you.”

See, now is the acceptable time; see, now is the day of salvation! 3We are putting no obstacle in anyone’s way, so that no fault may be found with our ministry, 4but as servants of God we have commended ourselves in every way: through great endurance, in afflictions, hardships, calamities, 5beatings, imprisonments, riots, labors, sleepless nights, hunger; 6by purity, knowledge, patience, kindness, holiness of spirit, genuine love, 7truthful speech, and the power of God; with the weapons of righteousness for the right hand and for the left; 8in honor and dishonor, in ill repute and good repute. We are treated as impostors, and yet are true; 9as unknown, and yet are well known; as dying, and see—we are alive; as punished, and yet not killed; 10as sorrowful, yet always rejoicing; as poor, yet making many rich; as having nothing, and yet possessing everything.

The word of the Lord.

Thanks be to God.

 GOSPEL: Matthew 6:1-6, 16-21

The holy gospel according to Matthew.

Glory to you, O Lord.

In the Sermon on the Mount, Jesus commends almsgiving, prayer, and fasting, but emphasizes that spiritual devotion must not be done for show.

[Jesus said to the disciples:] 1“Beware of practicing your piety before others in order to be seen by them; for then you have no reward from your Father in heaven.

  2“So whenever you give alms, do not sound a trumpet before you, as the hypocrites do in the synagogues and in the streets, so that they may be praised by others. Truly I tell you, they have received their reward. 3But when you give alms, do not let your left hand know what your right hand is doing, 4so that your alms may be done in secret; and your Father who sees in secret will reward you.

  5“And whenever you pray, do not be like the hypocrites; for they love to stand and pray in the synagogues and at the street corners, so that they may be seen by others. Truly I tell you, they have received their reward. 6But whenever you pray, go into your room and shut the door and pray to your Father who is in secret; and your Father who sees in secret will reward you.

  16“And whenever you fast, do not look dismal, like the hypocrites, for they disfigure their faces so as to show others that they are fasting. Truly I tell you, they have received their reward. 17But when you fast, put oil on your head and wash your face, 18so that your fasting may be seen not by others but by your Father who is in secret; and your Father who sees in secret will reward you.

  19“Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust consume and where thieves break in and steal; 20but store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust consumes and where thieves do not break in and steal. 21For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.”

The gospel of the Lord.

Praise to you, O Christ.

 SERMON Pastor Erika Nilsen

INVITATION TO LENT 

Friends in Christ, today with the whole church we enter the time of remembering Jesus’ passover from death to life, and our life in Christ is renewed.

We begin this holy season by acknowledging our need for repentance and for God’s mercy. We are created to experience joy in communion with God, to love one another, and to live in harmony with creation. But our sinful rebellion separates us from God, our neighbors, and creation, so that we do not enjoy the life our creator intended.

As disciples of Jesus, we are called to a discipline that contends against evil and resists whatever leads us away from love of God and neighbor. I invite you, therefore, to the discipline of Lent—self-examination and repentance, prayer and fasting, sacrificial giving and works of love—strengthened by the gifts of word and sacrament. Let us continue our journey through these forty days to the great Three Days of Jesus’ death and resurrection.

CONFESSION OF SIN .

Let us confess our sin in the presence of God and of one another.

Silence is kept for reflection and self-examination.

Most holy and merciful God,

we confess to you and to one another,

and before the whole company of heaven,

that we have sinned by our fault,

by our own fault,

by our own most grievous fault,

in thought, word, and deed,

by what we have done and by what we have left undone.

We have not loved you with our whole heart, and mind, and strength. We have not loved our neighbors as ourselves. We have not forgiven others as we have been forgiven.

Have mercy on us, O God.

We have shut our ears to your call to serve as Christ served us. We have not been true to the mind of Christ. We have grieved your Holy Spirit.

Have mercy on us, O God.

Our past unfaithfulness, the pride, envy, hypocrisy, and apathy that have infected our lives, we confess to you.

Have mercy on us, O God.

Our self-indulgent appetites and ways, and our exploitation of other people, we confess to you.

Have mercy on us, O God.

Our negligence in prayer and worship, and our failure to share the faith that is in us, we confess to you.

Have mercy on us, O God.

Our neglect of human need and suffering, and our indifference to injustice and cruelty, we confess to you.

Have mercy on us, O God.

Our false judgments, our uncharitable thoughts toward our neighbors, and our prejudice and contempt toward those who differ from us, we confess to you.

Have mercy on us, O God.

Our waste and pollution of your creation, and our lack of concern for those who come after us, we confess to you.

Have mercy on us, O God.

Restore us, O God, and let your anger depart from us.

Hear us, O God, for your mercy is great.

Accomplish in us, O God, the work of your salvation,

that we may show forth your glory in the world.

By the cross and passion of your Son, our Savior,

bring us with all your saints to the joy of his resurrection.

Almighty God have mercy on us, forgive us all our sins through our Lord Jesus Christ, strengthen us in all goodness, and by the power of the Holy Spirit keep us in eternal life.

Amen.

Song 

Ashes

Verse 1

You will make a way

Teach me now to trust

To lift my eyes again

When all I hold is dust

Chorus

From the ashes

From the ashes

You call my heart to life

Call my heart to life

From the silence

From the sadness

You call my heart to life

Call my heart to life

Verse 2

You will breathe again

Resurrect these bones

And all Your promises

I won’t forget

You won’t let me go

Chorus

From the ashes

From the ashes

You call my heart to life

Call my heart to life

From the silence

From the sadness

You call my heart to life

Call my heart to life

Bridge

And I have nothing but praise to give to offer

Nothing but praise to give

I have nothing but praise to lay at Your feet

Nothing but praise to give

Chorus

From the ashes

From the ashes

You call my heart to life

Call my heart to life

From the silence

From the sadness

You call my heart to life

Call my heart to life

repeat 

Ending

From the ashes from the ashes

From the silence from the sadness

You call my heart to life

CCLI Song # 7035696

Jason Ingram | Mia Fieldes

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PRAYERS OF INTERCESSION

Relying on the promises of God, we pray boldly for the church, the world, and all in need.

A brief silence.

O God, you call your church to be ministers of reconciliation throughout the world. Inspire your church in its proclamation of the gospel and guide its ministries to build up the body of Christ. Lord, in your mercy,

hear our prayer.

O God, you created the earth and all its inhabitants and you declared that it is good. Protect mountains and valleys, animals and plants, and direct us to be good stewards of all you have made. Lord, in your mercy,

hear our prayer.

O God, you desire peace. Direct governments and leaders to work for the well-being of all people and raise up advocates to speak and serve on behalf of the downtrodden. Lord, in your mercy.

hear our prayer.

O God, you are our hope in the midst of despair, our help in the midst of sorrow, and our consolation in the midst of affliction. Grant comfort to all who suffer in body, mind, or spirit (especially) and support caregivers who attend to all in need. Lord, in your mercy,

hear our prayer.

O God, you are love, and you call us to love one another. Accompany with your grace those journeying toward baptism and call us all to repentance as we prepare to celebrate Christ’s death and resurrection. Lord, in your mercy,

hear our prayer.

Here other intercessions may be offered.

O God, you are our life and our salvation. We give you thanks for the righteous who have died in faith. Inspire us by their example to proclaim your steadfast love. Lord, in your mercy,

hear our prayer.

We entrust ourselves and all our prayers to you, O faithful God, through Jesus Christ our Lord.

Amen.

MEAL

God feeds us with the presence of Jesus Christ.

OFFERING

OFFERING PRAYER

Let us pray.

God our provider, you have not fed us with bread alone, but with words of grace and life. Bless us and these your gifts, which we receive from your bounty, through Jesus Christ our Lord.

Amen.

THANKSGIVING AT THE TABLE

You are indeed holy, almighty and merciful God.

You are most holy,

and great is the majesty of your glory.

You so loved the world that you gave your only Son,

so that everyone who believes in him may not perish

but have eternal life.

We give you thanks for his coming into the world

to fulfill for us your holy will

and to accomplish all things for our salvation.

In the night in which he was betrayed,

our Lord Jesus took bread, and gave thanks;

broke it, and gave it to his disciples, saying:

Take and eat; this is my body, given for you.

Do this for the remembrance of me.

Again, after supper, he took the cup, gave thanks,

and gave it for all to drink, saying:

This cup is the new covenant in my blood,

shed for you and for all people for the forgiveness of sin.

Do this for the remembrance of me.

For as often as we eat of this bread and drink from this cup,

we proclaim the Lord’s death until he comes.

Christ has died

Christ is risen

Christ will come again. 

Remembering, therefore, his salutary command,

his life-giving passion and death, his glorious resurrection and ascension,

and the promise of his coming again,

we give thanks to you, O Lord God Almighty,

not as we ought but as we are able;

we ask you mercifully to accept our praise and thanksgiving

and with your Word and Holy Spirit to bless us, your servants,

and these your own gifts of bread and wine,

so that we and all who share in the body and blood of Christ

may be filled with heavenly blessing and grace,

and, receiving the forgiveness of sin,

may be formed to live as your holy people

and be given our inheritance with all your saints.

To you, O God, Father, Son, and Holy Spirit,

be all honor and glory in your holy church, now and forever.

LORD’S PRAYER 

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,

forever and ever. Amen.

Lamb of God, you take away the sin of the world;

have mercy on us.

Lamb of God, you take away the sin of the world;

have mercy on us.

Lamb of God, you take away the sin of the world;

grant us peace, grant us peace.

PRAYER

Let us pray.

A brief silence is kept.

Merciful God, accompany our journey through these forty days. Renew us in the gift of baptism, that we may provide for those who are poor, pray for those in need, fast from self-indulgence, and above all that we may find our treasure in the life of your Son, Jesus Christ, our Savior and Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever.

Amen.

SENDING

BLESSING 

Almighty God, Father, ☩ Son, and Holy Spirit, bless you now and forever.

Amen.

DISMISSAL 

Go forth into the world to serve God with gladness;

be of good courage;

hold fast to that which is good;

render to no one evil for evil;

strengthen the fainthearted; support the weak;

help the afflicted; honor all people;

love and serve God, rejoicing in the power of the Holy Spirit.

Thanks be to God.

From sundaysandseasons.com.

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