Our Help and Our Hope Service Prayers for the Fifth Sunday after Pentecost June 19, 2016

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Our Help and Our Hope

Service Prayers for the Fifth Sunday after Pentecost

June 19, 2016
1 Kings 19:1-4, (5-7), 8-15a Psalm 42 and 43    Galatians 3:23-29   Luke 8:26-39

Call to Worship (from Psalms 42 & 43)
Leader: Come, all you whose souls thirst for the living God.

People: We come in search of help and hope.
Come, you who are acquainted with grief or oppression.

We come bearing our doubts, our wounds, and our fears.
Come, you who are in need of good news.

We come in search of joy, truth, and light.
Come and find refuge in God your rock.

Let us again praise the One who is our help and our hope.
Invocation (from 1 Kings 19:8-15a)
O God, you come to us not in the chaos of the whirlwind,

not in the roar of the earthquake, not in the crackling heat of the fire,

but in the sound of sheer silence.

Quiet our minds, bring peace to our hearts and stillness to our bodies

that we might meet you in that silence.

Help us to listen for your still, small voice.

Give us the courage to go wherever you lead us,

trusting that you will prepare the way.

We pray this in the name of our Companion on the journey,

Jesus the Christ.

Prayer of Confession (from Luke 8:26-39)
Leader: We confess, O God,

that we often find ourselves distracted

by a legion of destructive voices that make false promises.

Surely these are our inner demons:

Left side: We believe safety and security can reside in ample bank accounts.

Right side: We think that success leads to real happiness.
We equate power with dominating others.
We hold fast to pain and anger as if they were treasure in a chest.
We soothe our fear of failure with substances that do harm.
We feed our hunger for love and approval

with food that does not satisfy.
All: Break hold of the chains that bind us, O God.

Set us free from the tombs in which we dwell.
Silent Prayer
Assurance of Pardon
Friends, hear this good news:

In Christ God calls us forth from the tomb to the light of new life.

The healing power of God’s forgiveness restores us to wholeness.

God releases us from the chains that bind us.

We are set free to be children of God!
Amen._Invitation_to_Share'>All: Thanks be to God! Amen.
Invitation to Share
Jesus told the man he had healed to go home

and tell everyone how much God had done for him.

What if we were to look at our offering

as a way to proclaim how much God has done for us?

What if we were to share with the same kind of generous love

that God abundantly shares with us?

Prayer of Dedication
Loving God, we share what we have

because you share so abundantly with us.

May our sharing be an act of thanksgiving and praise

for all you have done and all you will continue to do for us.

We dedicate these gifts and offer ourselves to your service.

Bless us and our gifts,

that we might be a source of help, hope, and joy to a world in need.

With grateful hearts we pray, Amen.
Go forth into the world with hope,

for no chain can bind and no tomb can contain

the healing life Christ offers each of us.
Go and make room for quiet, still places amidst the chaos of everyday life,

for there we will find God.

Go and dare to proclaim all that God has done for you,

for there are many who need our good news.

Go, knowing that the light of God shall lead you,

the presence of Christ shall guide you,

and the power of the Holy Spirit shall uphold you,

this day and always. Amen.

Our Help and Our Hope, Service Prayers for the 5th Sunday after Pentecost, was written by the Rev. Heather A. Moody, Senior Minister at First Congregational Church of Poughkeepsie, NY.

Copyright 2016 Local Church Ministries, Faith Formation Ministry Team, United Church of Christ, 700 Prospect Avenue, Cleveland, OH 44115-1100. Permission granted to reproduce or adapt this material for use in services of worship or church education. All publishing rights reserved.

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