Sunday, November 24, 2019

Stewardship / Commitment Sunday

Organ PreludeIn illo tempore (Gregorian proper)

Words of Welcome and Announcements Rev. Debbie Scott

Choral Introit We Praise You, O God (Barnby)

We praise You, O God; we acknowledge You to be the Lord. All the earth doth worship You,
the Father everlasting. Amen.

* Call to Worship

L: Gift-giver, it is the time of year to gather in the produce of the earth.
P: And so we give thanks for the gifts of food.
L: It is the time of year when we admire the bright colors of the season.
P: And so we pause to give thanks for the beauty of the earth.
L: In our time of worship this morning,
P: Move within and among us, awakening us to Your presence, moving our hearts to respond to your grace. Amen.

* Opening HymnFor the Beauty of the Earth UMH 92

1. For the beauty of the earth, for the glory of the skies, for the love which from our birth over and around us lies; Lord of all, to thee we raise this our hymn of grateful praise. [Replacement Refrain For Holy Communion Christ, our God, to thee we raise this our sacrifice of praise].

2. For the beauty of each hour of the day and of the night, hill and vale, and tree and flower, sun and moon, and stars of light; Lord of all, to thee we raise this our hymn of grateful praise. [Replacement Refrain For Holy Communion Christ, our God, to thee we raise this our sacrifice of praise].

3. For the joy of ear and eye, for the heart and mind’s delight, for the mystic harmony linking sense to sound and sight; Lord of all, to thee we raise this our hymn of grateful praise. [Replacement Refrain For Holy Communion Christ, our God, to thee we raise this our sacrifice of praise].

4. For the joy of human love, brother, sister, parent, child, friends on earth and friends above, for all gentle thoughts and mild; Lord of all, to thee we raise this our hymn of grateful praise. [Replacement Refrain For Holy Communion Christ, our God, to thee we raise this our sacrifice of praise].

5. For thy church, that evermore lifteth holy hands above, offering up on every shore her pure sacrifice of love; Lord of all, to thee we raise this our hymn of grateful praise. [Replacement Refrain For Holy Communion Christ, our God, to thee we raise this our sacrifice of praise].

6. For thy self, best Gift Divine, to the world so freely given, for that great, great love of thine, peace on earth, and joy in heaven: Lord of all, to thee we raise this our hymn of grateful praise. [Replacement Refrain For Holy Communion Christ, our God, to thee we raise this our sacrifice of praise].

Prayer of Invocation (All)

Lord God of all creation. You are indeed the Lord of harvest, for from you comes every drop of rain, every ray of sunshine, every nutrient in the soil; everything that gives life. Help us to remember that without you we would have nothing. Fill us with your generosity so that we may also become people of harvest, giving and sharing our blessings, our wealth of food and goods, with all the peoples of this world. We ask this in Jesus’ Name. Amen.

Sharing Joys and Concerns

Pastoral Prayer

Lord’s Prayer

Children’s Moment

Anthem Prayer of Thanksgiving (Valerius)

We gather together to ask the Lord’s blessing;
He chastens and hastens His will to make known.
The wicked oppressing, cease them from distressing,
Sing praises to His name; he forgets not His own.

Beside us to guide us, our God with us joining,
Ordaining, maintaining His Kingdom divine,
So from the beginning the fight we are winning
Thou, Lord, was at our side; the glory be Thine.

We all do extol Thee, Thou leader in battle,
And pray that Thou still our Defender will be,
Let Thy congregation escape tribulation;
Thy Name be ever praised. O lord, make us free.

Call to Confession John Hutchinson, Liturgist

We wonder what’s for lunch, we worry about work tomorrow, we fret about the test that is coming up. So much worry, so much time waster over things we cannot control. The One who showers earth with rain, who places the stars in the autumn sky, is the same One who wraps mercy tight around you, who feeds us on healing and hope. Let us confess how our worries keep us from trusting the God who hears us and restores us to new life. Please join me as we pray,

Prayer of Confession (All) John Hutchinson, Liturgist

Because we live in this modern, tech-driven, twittering age, we often forget what you have done for us, God of every blessing. We pat ourselves on the back for our ability to learn new computer skills, but have forgotten that life is more than a machine. We have more than we could ever use yet, like squirrels, store up more and more. Our faith is often pushed to the back of the closet, to make room for all the fears we wear so easily.

Forgive us, Restorer of life. As you clothe us with your grace and mercy, may we share with those who have so little. As our hearts overflow with your love and wonder, may we offer them as gifts to everyone we meet. As you feed us with your joy and hope, may we welcome to the Table all those who lives are filled with tears and pain. As we gather with family and friends during this season, may we continue to give thanks for the gift of Jesus Christ, our Lord and Savior.

Assurance of Pardon John Hutchinson, Liturgist

L: This is the good news: as God dresses creation in wonder, so you will be clothed in grace; as God pours out abundance upon the earth, so you will be blessed with peace and joy.
P: We don’t say it often enough, but thanks be to God for healing, for life, for wonder, for mercy. We are blessed, for we are forgiven. Amen.

* HymnCome, Ye Thankful People, Come UMH 694

1. Come, ye thankful people, come, raise the song of harvest home; all is safely gathered in, ere the winter storms begin. God our Maker doth provide for our wants to be supplied; come to God’s own temple, come, raise the song of harvest home.

2. All the world is God’s own field, fruit as praise to God we yield; wheat and tares together sown are to joy or sorrow grown; first the blade and then the ear, then the full corn shall appear; Lord of harvest, grant that we wholesome grain and pure may be.

3. For the Lord our God shall come, and shall take the harvest home; from the field shall in that day all offenses purge away, giving angels charge at last in the fire the tares to cast; but the fruitful ears to store in the garner evermore.

4. Even so, Lord, quickly come, bring thy final harvest home; gather thou thy people in, free from sorrow, free from sin, there, forever purified, in thy presence to abide; come, with all thine angels, come, raise the glorious harvest home.

A Reading from the Old Testament – Deuteronomy 26:1-11
When you have come into the land that the Lord your God is giving you as an inheritance to possess, and you possess it, and settle in it, you shall take some of the first of all the fruit of the ground, which you harvest from the land that the Lord your God is giving you, and you shall put it in a basket and go to the place that the Lord your God will choose as a dwelling for his name. You shall go to the priest who is in office at that time, and say to him, “Today I declare to the Lord your God that I have come into the land that the Lord swore to our ancestors to give us.” When the priest takes the basket from your hand and sets it down before the altar of the Lord your God, you shall make this response before the Lord your God: “A wandering Aramean was my ancestor; he went down into Egypt and lived there as an alien, few in number, and there he became a great nation, mighty and populous. When the Egyptians treated us harshly and afflicted us, by imposing hard labor on us, we cried to the Lord, the God of our ancestors; the Lord heard our voice and saw our affliction, our toil, and our oppression. The Lord brought us out of Egypt with a mighty hand and an outstretched arm, with a terrifying display of power, and with signs and wonders; and he brought us into this place and gave us this land, a land flowing with milk and honey. So now I bring the first of the fruit of the ground that you, O Lord, have given me.” You shall set it down before the Lord your God and bow down before the Lord your God. Then you, together with the Levites and the aliens who reside among you, shall celebrate with all the bounty that the Lord your God has given to you and to your house.

Sermon – “Celebrating Our Stewardship”                                                                          Rev. Debbie Scott

Presentation of Pledge Cards on the Altar

L: We give because we need to give—to express in tangible, material ways what our priorities are; to express that all we are and all we have come from God; to give witness to the importance of God’s justice and love for all people. This morning, in particular, we give witness to the significance of God’s work through the ministry of this congregation as we bring forward our pledge cards for the coming year and commit our financial stewardship to God. (Please bring your Pledge Cards forward to the basket on the Altar)

Presentation HymnMy Tribute Jessika Williams

Stewardship Covenant (All)

I recognize that all I have or ever hope to have is mine in trust only.

I will manage the resources entrusted to me in ways that advance God’s kingdom of love and goodness.

I have gifts that have been given and which I have nurtured, gifts I will share in ways that show the presence of Christ to those around me.

I seek the opportunity to be a significant part of the family of God around the world through prayers, participation, service, witness, and gifts of money.

I covenant to grow and to fulfill my Christian stewardship in response to God’s graciousness. In God’s strength I will earnestly endeavor to fulfill this covenant. Amen.

The Offering of Gifts & Tithes

OffertoryBless The Lord, O My Soul (Gary James)

Bless the Lord, O my soul, and all that is within me bless His holy Name. Bless the Lord, O my soul, and forget not all his benefits. He forgives all your sins and heals all your infirmities. He redeems your life from the grave and crowns you with mercy and loving kindness. Our days are like the grass; we flourish like a flower of the field. When the wind goes over it, it is gone, and its place shall know it no more.

* Presentation of OfferingPraise God, from Whom All Blessings Flow UMH 95

Praise God, from whom all blessings flow; praise him, all creatures here below;
praise him above, yet heavenly host; praise Father, Son, and Holy Ghost. Amen.

*Offering Prayer (All)

On this day of plenty and abundance, we are led to share out of our wealth. Receive these gifts and use them that others may receive from the abundance of this congregation. For home, for family, for friends, for all those blessings by which life becomes more meaningful and time more precious, we thank you Lord. Amen.

* Closing HymnNow Thank we All Our God UMH 102

1. Now thank we all our God, with heart and hands and voices, who wondrous things has done, in whom this world rejoices; who from our mothers’ arms has blessed us on our way with countless gifts of love, and still is ours today.

2. O may this bounteous God through all our life be near us, with ever joyful hearts and blessed peace to cheer us; and keep us still in grace, and guide us when perplexed; and free us from all ills, in this world and the next.

3. All praise and thanks to God the Father now be given; the Son, and him who reigns with them in highest heaven; the one eternal God, whom earth and heaven adore; for thus it was, is now, and shall be evermore.

* Benediction

Before we fill ourselves from groaning tables,
let us go forth to feed those whose hunger is all too real.
Before we gather with friends and family in warm, safe homes,
let us go forth to shelter those who have no place to sleep.
Before we rush to the stores to buy more than we really need,
let us go to offer our hearts and lives to all whose lives are empty.

* Choral Response Bless The Lord, O My Soul (Moore)

Bless the Lord, O my soul; bless His holy name. Amen.

* Ringing of the Bicentennial Bell

* Organ Postlude Gratia Deo (Thomson)

Categories Uncategorized | Tags: | Posted on November 22, 2019

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