Sunday Worship 2 June 2024

Order of Service

Below you will find the Order of Service, prayers, hymns and sermon for today’s service.   You can either simply read this or you can
 

to listen to the service and sing along with the hymns.  This will open up a new screen, at the bottom of the screen you will see a play symbol.  Press that, then come back to this window so you can follow along with the service.

Sunday Worship from the United Reformed Church
for Sunday 2 June 2024

 
Today’s service is led by the Revd Andy Braunston

 
Welcome

As Queen’s nostalgic defence of radio fades away we focus today on listening.  Above the noise of our world we seek to listen to God’s call – a call which comes in the everyday things of life, often in unexpected places and through unexpected people.  My name is Andy Braunston and God’s call to me has led me to live in the beautify island county of Orkney where I serve as the URCs Minister for Digital Worship.  I’m a member here at the Peedie Kirk URC and it’s my delight to lead worship for you today.  So let’s worship God together.

Call to Worship

We come to worship, we come to hear:
speak, Lord, your servants are listening.
Despite the siren voices around us, we are here:
speak, Lord, your servants are listening.
In the Babel noise of our world, we come to hear You, O God:
speak, Lord, your servants are listening.

Hymn     O The Word of My Lord Deep Within My Being  
Damian Lundy © 1978, Kevin Mayhew One Licence # A-734713 sung by the Thomastown Folk Choir.

Oh the Word of my Lord, deep within my being.
Oh the Word of my Lord, You have filled my mind.

 
Before I formed you in the womb, 
I knew you through and through
I chose you to be mine.
Before you left your mother’s side
I called to you my child  to be my sign.

Oh the Word of my Lord, deep within my being.
Oh the Word of my Lord, You have filled my mind.

I know that you are very young, 
but I will make you strong.
I will fill you with my word, 
and you will travel through the land
fulfilling my command, which you have learned.

Oh the Word of my Lord, deep within my being.
Oh the Word of my Lord, You have filled my mind.

 
Prayers of Approach, Confession, and Grace

We know, O God, that you search and know us,
that no one, not even ourselves, knows us as well as you do.
You discern our thoughts even when we are far away,
you journey with us in our coming and going, our resting and sleeping. 
You knit us together in the womb and we praise you 
for your fearful and wonderful creation; a creation that includes even us!

Yet we know, O God, that we try to flee from your Spirit,
and block our ears when you speak.
We prefer the noise of our world to the calm of your Breath.
We try to take the wings of the morning 
and settle at the farthest reaches of the sea.
We try to flee from you by making our bed in Hell,
and yet you are there, waiting for us to turn back to you.

Forgive us, O Holy One, when we turn from you,
remind us of your loving kindness,
and assure us, always, of the power of your love,
found in weakness, defying even death, restoring us to wholeness.  Amen.

Introduction

Hello.  Above the noise of our world we seek to listen to God’s call – a call which comes in the everyday things of life, often in unexpected places and through unexpected people.  My name is Andy Braunston and God’s call to me has led me to live in the beautify island county of Orkney where I serve as the United Reformed Church’s Minister for Digital Worship.  I am a member of the Peedie Kirk, St Magnus’ Cathedral’s baby sister; our building is just next to the Cathedral and it’s my pleasure to be leading worship for you today during this time of ministerial vacancy.

We are going to think about hearing God today; the young Samuel didn’t understand the calls he was hearing in the night, the elderly, but ineffective, Eli did.  The Psalmist reminds us that we can never be out of God’s loving presence – even in the depths of darkness God’s light finds us and, in our Gospel, reading, Jesus’ call to be something of a controversialist becomes clear when he chides, and outsmarts, his critics who accuse him of letting his disciples break the Law.  So, we pray as we prepare to hear God speak to us through word, music, silence and bread and wine.  

Prayer for Illumination

Speak to us, O God, as we try to listen. Through the daily routine and ritual of our lives – speak to us. Through the humdrum and everyday – make yourself known. As we hear your word read and proclaimed, stir within us that we may hear, love, follow.  Amen.

Reading     1 Samuel 3:1-20

Now the boy Samuel was ministering to the LORD under Eli. The word of the LORD was rare in those days; visions were not widespread. At that time Eli, whose eyesight had begun to grow dim so that he could not see, was lying down in his room; the lamp of God had not yet gone out, and Samuel was lying down in the temple of the LORD, where the ark of God was. Then the LORD called, “Samuel! Samuel!” and he said, “Here I am!” and ran to Eli, and said, “Here I am, for you called me.” But he said, “I did not call; lie down again.” So he went and lay down. The LORD called again, “Samuel!” Samuel got up and went to Eli, and said, “Here I am, for you called me.” But he said, “I did not call, my son; lie down again.” Now Samuel did not yet know the LORD, and the word of the LORD had not yet been revealed to him. The LORD called Samuel again, a third time. And he got up and went to Eli, and said, “Here I am, for you called me.” Then Eli perceived that the LORD was calling the boy. Therefore Eli said to Samuel, “Go, lie down; and if he calls you, you shall say, ‘Speak, LORD, for your servant is listening.’” So Samuel went and lay down in his place. Now the LORD came and stood there, calling as before, “Samuel! Samuel!” And Samuel said, “Speak, for your servant is listening.” Then the LORD said to Samuel, “See, I am about to do something in Israel that will make both ears of anyone who hears of it tingle. On that day I will fulfil against Eli all that I have spoken concerning his house, from beginning to end. For I have told him that I am about to punish his house forever, for the iniquity that he knew, because his sons were blaspheming God, and he did not restrain them. Therefore, I swear to the house of Eli that the iniquity of Eli’s house shall not be expiated by sacrifice or offering forever.” Samuel lay there until morning; then he opened the doors of the house of the LORD. Samuel was afraid to tell the vision to Eli. But Eli called Samuel and said, “Samuel, my son.” He said, “Here I am.” Eli said, “What was it that he told you? Do not hide it from me. May God do so to you and more also, if you hide anything from me of all that he told you.” So Samuel told him everything and hid nothing from him. Then he said, “It is the LORD; let him do what seems good to him.” As Samuel grew up, the LORD was with him and let none of his words fall to the ground. And all Israel from Dan to Beer-sheba knew that Samuel was a trustworthy prophet of the LORD.

Hymn     Psalm 139 
© 1992, Bernadette Farrell. Published by OCP One Licence # A-734713  
Sung by Mary Munson and used with her kind permission.

O God, you search me and you know me.
All my thoughts lie open to your gaze,
when I walk or lie down you are before me:
ever the maker and keeper of my days.

You know my resting and my rising,
You discern my purpose from afar,
and with love everlasting you besiege me:
in ev’ry moment of life or death you are.

Before a word is on my tongue, Lord,
You have known its meaning through and through,
You are with me beyond my understanding:
God of my present, my past and future too.

Although your spirit is upon me,
still I search for shelter from your light,
there is nowhere on earth I can escape you:
even the darkness is radiant in your sight.
 
For you created me and shaped me,
gave me life within my mother’s womb,
for the wonder of who I am I praise you:
safe in your hands, all creation is made new.
 
Reading     St Mark 2:23-3:6

One sabbath Jesus was going through the grainfields; and as they made their way his disciples began to pluck heads of grain. The Pharisees said to him, “Look, why are they doing what is not lawful on the sabbath?” And he said to them, “Have you never read what David did when he and his companions were hungry and in need of food? He entered the house of God, when Abiathar was high priest, and ate the bread of the Presence, which it is not lawful for any but the priests to eat, and he gave some to his companions.” Then he said to them, “The sabbath was made for humankind, and not humankind for the sabbath; so the Son of Man is lord even of the sabbath.” Again he entered the synagogue, and a man was there who had a withered hand. They watched him to see whether he would cure him on the sabbath, so that they might accuse him. And he said to the man who had the withered hand, “Come forward.” Then he said to them, “Is it lawful to do good or to do harm on the sabbath, to save life or to kill?” But they were silent. He looked around at them with anger; he was grieved at their hardness of heart and said to the man, “Stretch out your hand.” He stretched it out, and his hand was restored. The Pharisees went out and immediately conspired with the Herodians against him, how to destroy him.

Sermon 

In my role I have to travel quite a bit and have invested in a pair of noise cancelling headphones – they are great for the flights that form at least the first part of my journeys south.  They are also useful when I pick up the Sleeper from Aberdeen or Inverness as they cancel out the train noises which can inhibit sleep.  Noise surrounds us all not just those of us who have to use LoganAir and the Caledonian Sleeper.  We have music in shops and restaurants and when put on hold on phone calls.  Even in the rural West Mainland of Orkney I’m surrounded by noise – often glorious.  The screech of the Owl, the song of the Curlew, and the lowing of the cattle all accompany the car sounds we get, the sound of farm machinery and, of course, the sound of the wind.  I have some hearing loss so background noise can be a problem if I’m trying to hear someone talk; noise is part of life but can impede the ability to listen.  Noise can be great but can be a distraction.  Noise can stop us hearing properly.

Our first reading reminded us of the lovely story of Samuel hearing God but not understanding what he was hearing – and the shrine at night would have been fairly quiet.  We have the kind elderly Eli, who was slow on the uptake – befuddled as he was by sleep.  Eli encouraged innocent Samuel who heard but did not understand.  Samuel’s call, at this point, was difficult.  He had to announce God’s abandonment of the priestly ministry of Eli’s House.  Knowing the rest of the story we know that this is the start of Samuel’s own ministry and how he, as God’s spokesperson, made and broke monarchies.  He had to learn to hear God despite, and maybe through, the sounds he heard around him.  

This story is one that speaks to us about listening for God and the consequences of that listening.  Will God abandon those who, like Eli, speak His word?  God’s refusal to give up on God’s own people is reassuring but can disturb those of us who feel called to help lead those people?  What if we’re cast aside like kindly Eli’s house was? God’s call here is to Samuel, a boy who doesn’t understand much and this call is sharp, persistent, and hard – he has to tell Eli that God’s favour has moved on as he colluded with his sons’ evildoing.  Samuel doesn’t seem to be making a career move; there’s no indication he knew what God had in mind for him.  

We see deep truths about God’s work here – God doesn’t start with the rich and wise but the young and foolish.  God is persistent; He keeps waking up Samuel until Samuel, with guidance from the imperfect Eli, finally gets it.  Samuel’s response “here I am” is one of open-handed acceptance to God’s sovereign will – a will that could be thwarted if Samuel had said “no”.  Yet as lovely as the passage is it can raise some questions; generally Assessment Boards of all denominations get a bit twitchy if candidates describe their sense of call as an audible voice!  Christian history is littered with the tragedies that come from individuals declaring their calling outwith the usual discernment processes.  Eli helped Samuel discern his call even at some cost to Eli himself.  The reverse is also true; many who are called to ministry shy away from it believing that as they’ve not heard a voice, seen a vision or had other dramatic calls they clearly aren’t what God wants engaged in His service.  Nowadays, denominations try to blend a range of Biblical models of call with a careful discernment process yet still believe that God calls unlikely people into often unlikely forms of service.  
The theme of call can also be understood as we read our Psalm for today.
The ancient poet understood deep things about God – what we’d now call God’s omniscience, omnipresence and omnipotence (the all-knowing, always present, all-powerful God).  These divine attributes, however, are seen in everyday things – sitting down, rising up, walking, stopping and speaking.  In the everyday things of life God’s power and purpose is seen; Samuel heard God in a dream (or maybe was awoken from his dreams by God’s voice).  Dreaming and disturbed nights are everyday occurrences but through them, the ancient authors suggest, we can perceive God.  Further, it’s in the everyday things of life that God knows us.  The poet then muses on God’s presence; there is nowhere we can go where God is not – even the depths of hell.  As Bernadette Farrell renders this part of the poem “There is nowhere on earth I can escape you: Even the darkness is radiant in your sight.”  The Psalmist sees God’s all-powerful nature – making light from dark, our own “fearful and wonderful made creation” at God’s own hands.  It’s clearly not an omnipotence that protects people from evil as Jesus himself wasn’t protected and was sent to an agonising death on the cross.  Instead, we realise that evil isn’t the last word but that death, evil, sin and even the systems that control us will one day have to give way to God’s sovereign will.  Omnipotence is seen in weakness, loss, and vulnerability which, like many things in our faith seems a contradiction in terms!

So we learn from the first reading that God calls and we should listen, from the Psalm that God’s call and love are seen in the simple everyday things of life and now we turn to our Gospel reading when where we see that Jesus’ calling included, like Samuel’s some hard truths.  

Jewish faith and practice, like Islamic faith and practice, is grounded in the everyday things of life in tangible ways that, in many ways, Christianity no longer reflects.  Laws govern what food can be eaten and how, washing before prayers, prescribed times of prayer and even extend to dress.  The whole of life is infused with reminders of God’s presence; Christian practices around this –  like giving up meat for Lent or eating fish on Fridays – have fallen out of favour in the West (but not in Orthodox forms of Christianity).  These practices, as well as giving a sense of one’s faith, also reinforce a sense of identity; Cardinal Nichols has tried to encourage Catholics to take up fish on Fridays and crossing oneself in public as both expressions of faith and a witness and badge of identity.  The problems can come when the badges of faith and identity are fixated upon and get in the way of the faith behind the identity.  The religious leaders in today’s passage critique Jesus’ disciples for seeming to break the law – idly plucking grain.  Technically this was work but really was probably just an absent-minded thing.  Jesus quoted an Old Testament story when David, in need, took the bread reserved as a gift for God and used it to feed himself and his men – probably a greater affront to religious sensibilities.  His healing on the sabbath might also be seen as work in strict interpretations of the Law and Jesus outsmarts them there too.  Christians can be tempted to read pharisees as being the “baddies” in the story yet Jesus seems to engage with them, argue with them on their own terms, and understands their motivations.  Jesus’ calling, like Samuel’s was dangerous and had some hard truths that needed to be told.  

So where do these readings leave us as we ponder God’s call and our response to it?  As Christians we believe that all are called by God to various forms of ministry; we value the calling of those in ordered ministry but also see a variety of roles in local churches to which we might be called – youth and children’s work, Eldership, lay preaching and worship leading, welcoming, sharing faith with others.  As Reformed Christians we are rightly suspicious of those who assert a call but don’t submit themselves for wider discernment in the Church to test that Call.  

We started by thinking of noise – Queen’s nostalgic longing for radio instead of mere noise, Samuel’s hearing God in the night, the Psalmist’s insistence that it’s in the everyday and ordinary where God is felt.  We know God is at work in our lives – in the ordinary everyday things – and it is in those things – sitting, eating, sleeping, that we both perceive God and understand God’s call on our lives.  Our calls are not only perceived in the ordinary things of life but worked out there too; they may not be as grandiose as Samuel proclaiming the end of God’s favour on priests and kings or anointing new monarchs, they may not be as confrontational as Jesus’ ongoing arguments with the Pharisees.  The Call may not come through silence but in the noises we hear – from the train journeys to the call of the Curlew, from hustle and bustle of the city to the sound of the wind across the fields, from the quiet in church to the exuberance of the latest pop music.  We can be both distracted by and spoken to through the noise around us.  It isn’t through might, glory, or power that we find God but on the edge, in the broken places of our lives and our world, in the noisy and in the quiet places.  Our calling, like Samuel’s, like Jesus’, might be disturbing and unsettling but as the Psalmist reminds us we cannot flee from God’s Spirit.  Let’s pray.

Eternal God,
We hear you call by day and by night,
in silence and sound, in quiet and in noise.
Give us the perseverance to hear, the energy to follow
and the determination to make a difference.  Amen.

Hymn     How Clear is Our Vocation Lord  
Fred Pratt Green (1981) © 1982 by Hope Publishing Company One Licence # A-734713  
sung by a vocalist from the Grace Covenant Presbyterian Church in Asheville North Carolina.  

How clear is our vocation, Lord,
when once we heed your call:
to live according to your Word,
and daily learn, refreshed, restored,
that you are Lord of all
and will not let us fall.

But if, forgetful, we should find
your yoke is hard to bear;
if worldly pressures fray the mind,
and love itself cannot unwind
its tangled skein of care:
our inward life repair.

We marvel how your saints became
in hindrances more sure,
whose joyful virtues put to shame
the casual way we wear your name
and by our faults obscure
your pow’r to cleanse and cure.

In what you give us, Lord, to do,
together or alone,
in old routines and ventures new,
may we not cease to look to you,
the cross you hung upon—
all you endeavoured done.
 
Affirmation of Faith 

We believe that we belong, body and soul, 
to the One who gives us breath,

who is our comfort in life and death,
and has redeemed us from the powers and principalities of this world,
and frees us from the evil that seeks to drag us down.  

We believe that we belong, body and soul, 
to the One who gives us breath

and so, we no longer live for ourselves but for Christ,
taking comfort that we belong to Him,
yearning for the resurrection that is to come,
when we will be made whole.  

We believe that we belong, body and soul, 
to the One who gives us breath

who calls us to follow in the everyday things of life,
to perceive what eyes don’t fully see,
to listen to what our ears don’t normally hear,
to dream what the human heart struggles to imagine –
the world that is to come, when all will be free 
and creation will be made whole. Amen.

Intercessions

We bring our prayers for the world, the Church and those we love to Most High, who hears us even as we long to hear God.

Eternal One,
we bring to you places of pain in our world,
where your voice is drowned out by hate;
where guns and missiles, tanks and soldiers, drones and bombs 
banish the cool whisper of your calm.
Speak your peace, O God, in Gaza and the West Bank, 
in Israel, in Ukraine and Russia.
We hear the hatred too, Most High, away from the battle field;
in our political life here and around the world 
rhetoric is weaponised, diversity denied, 
and narrow identities trump the richness of our culture.
Speak your peace, O God, to our political leaders and candidates,
that public service will again be honourable.

pause

Risen Lord Jesus,
we bring you the Church
terrible as a mighty army with banners,
yet suffering with neglect, bemused by cultural change, 
and living with self-imposed wounds.
We pray for those who have been hurt by the Church,
those abused by clergy and Christian institutions,
and those denied a place at the table for how they love.
We pray for those who lead the Church,
charged with hearing and responding to your voice 
in a time and culture they don’t fully understand,
that through the noise they hear your voice,
and follow where you call.

pause

Most Holy Spirit,
we pray for our culture,
giving thanks for the rich diversity of our world,
and for your work in stirring consciences to action.
Help us listen for where you are at work – and then join in!
We pray to, O Comforter, 
for those we know and love who are in any kind of need…

longer pause

We join all our prayers together, O Most High, as we pray as Jesus taught saying, Our Father…

Offertory Introduction

Our response to God’s loving call always requires giving – of ourselves, of our talents, of our time and, of course, of our treasure.  The charities we support, the gifts we make the Church are signs of our everyday spirituality as important as food laws, ritual washing or times of prayer are in other faith traditions.  Through giving we sanctify even our finances.  As our collection is brought up during the next hymn we remember, with thanksgiving the call that God gives to each of us to make life, bread, and beauty available to all.  

Hymn     Take and Eat, Take and Eat
James Quien and Michael Joncas (1989) GIA Publications sung by the St Magnus Festival Chorus, Glenys Hughes (Conductor), Jean Leonard (Piano)  One Licence # A-734713  

Take and eat; take and eat: this is my body given up for you.
Take and drink; take and drink: this is my blood given up for you.

I am the Word that spoke and light was made; 
I am the seed that died to be re-born; 
I am the bread that comes from heaven above; 
I am the vine that fills your cup with joy.

Take and eat; take and eat: this is my body given up for you.
Take and drink; take and drink: this is my blood given up fo

I am the way that leads the exile home; 
I am the truth that sets the captive free; 
I am the life that raises up the dead; 
I am your peace, true peace my gift to you.
 
Take and eat; take and eat: this is my body given up for you.
Take and drink; take and drink: this is my blood given up fo

I am the first and last the Living One;
I am the Lord who died that you might live’
I am the bridegroom this is my wedding song
You are my bride, come to the marriage feast.

Take and eat; take and eat: this is my body given up for you.
Take and drink; take and drink: this is my blood given up fo

Offertory Prayer

God of all that is good,
we thank you for these gifts
and all that you give us.
Bless these gifts that we may use them wisely,
help us always to hear your call to us
that we may be the change our world needs. Amen.

Communion Prayer 

May God be with you:     and also with you.
Lift up your hearts.     We lift them to God.
Let us give thanks to our gracious God:     it is right to give thanks & praise.

It is truly right to give you thanks, 
it is fitting that we offer you praise, 
Source of all mercy, faithful One.

You sent Jesus Christ your Son 
among us as redeemer and Lord. 
He was moved with compassion 
for the poor and the powerless, 
for the sick and the sinner; 
he made himself neighbour to the oppressed. 
By his words and actions 
he proclaimed to the world that you care for us 
as a mother cares for her children.
He taught us to listen for you in the simple things of life,
and to respond to your call to follow.
And so, with all the angels and saints 
we sing the joyful hymn of your praise:
    
Scarborough Fair Sanctus
Michael Forster © 2008 Kevin Mayhew Ltd One Licence # A-734713  

Holy, holy, holy the Lord,
God of endless power and might;
the earth, the heav’ns are full of your love.
Sing hosanna! Glory to God!

Blest is he, the one who is sent
in the name of God the Most High.
O holy, holy, holy our Lord!
Sing hosanna! Glory to God!

You are truly blessed, O God of holiness,
you accompany us with love as we journey through life.
Blessed too is your Son, Jesus, 
who is present among us and whose love gathers us together.
As once he did for his disciples, 
Jesus now opens the scriptures for us and breaks the bread.
Blessed are you, holy and faithful God.

Great and merciful One, 
we ask you to send down your Holy Spirit,
to hallow these gifts of bread and wine,
that they may become for us the body and blood 
of our Lord, Jesus Christ.
Blessed are you, holy and faithful God.

On the eve of his passion and death, while at table with those he loved,
Jesus took bread and gave you thanks, broke the bread, gave it to his disciples and said:

“Take this all of you and eat it,
this is my body, which will be given up for you.”

When supper was ended he took the cup, again he gave you thanks,
and handing the cup to his disciples he said:

“Take this all of you and drink from it, this is the cup of my blood, 
the blood of the new and everlasting covenant,
it will be shed for you and for all, 
so that sins may be forgiven. Do this in memory of me.”

Let us proclaim the mystery of faith:

Christ has died, Christ is risen, Christ will come again!

And so Majestic One, we celebrate the memory of Jesus your son,
whom you led through suffering and death on the Cross 
to the glory of the resurrection and a place at your right hand.
Until Jesus, our saviour, comes again, we proclaim the work of your love,
and we offer you the bread of life and the cup of eternal blessing.

Look with favour on us now,
as we, in obedience to the Lord’s command 
show forth his sacrifice on the Cross 
by the bread broken and the wine poured for us to eat and drink.
Help us to recognise that Jesus, himself, risen and ascended, 
is present with us now, 
and gives himself for our spiritual nourishment and growth in grace.

Lord, perfect your Church in faith and love,
open our eyes to the needs of all, 
inspire us with words and deeds,
to comfort those who labour and are burdened.
Keep our service of others faithful to the example and command of Jesus.
Let your Church be a living witness 
to truth and freedom, to justice and peace, 
that all may be lifted up by the hope of a world made new.

When our pilgrimage on Earth is complete,
welcome us into your heavenly home,
where we shall dwell with you forever,
there with all the saints and martyrs of God,
We shall praise you and give you glory,
through Jesus your Son.

Through Christ, with Christ, in Christ, 
in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
all glory and honour is yours, 
Eternal Majesty, forever and ever.   Amen.

To prepare ourselves to receive the Lord in Holy Communion, let us sing again affirming our faith.

Acclamation
Adapted by Michael Morgan © 2008 Kevin Mayhew Ltd One Licence # A-734713  

When we eat this bread, and drink this cup,
we proclaim your death Lord Jesus.
Until you come in glory, until you come in glory. 

Music for Communion     Diapason Movement by John Greene 
(1695 – 1755), OEM3, Jenny Gill Crawley URC – 2021

Post Communion Prayer

Bless the Lord, O my soul; 
and all that is within me, bless God’s holy name!
Bless the Lord, O my soul, 
and forget not all God’s benefits.

Loving God, we thank you that you have 
fed us in this sacrament, united us with Christ, 
and given us a foretaste of the heavenly banquet in your eternal realm. Send us out in the power of your Spirit
to live and work to your praise and glory,
for the sake of Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

Hymn     I The Lord of Sea and Sky
Dan Schutte SJ © 1981, OCP One Licence # A-734713  
Performed by Ruth and Joy Everingham and used with their kind permission.

I, the Lord of sea and sky, I have heard my people cry. 
All who dwell in deepest sin My hand will save. 
I who made the stars of night, I will make their darkness bright. 
Who will bear my light to them? Whom shall I send? 

Here I am Lord. Is it I Lord? 
I have heard you calling in the night. 
I will go Lord, if you lead me. 
I will hold your people in my heart.

I, the Lord of snow and rain, I have borne my people’s pain.
I have wept for love of them.They turn away. 
I will break their hearts of stone, Give them hearts for love alone. 
I will speak my word to them, Whom shall I send? 

Here I am Lord. Is it I Lord? 
I have heard you calling in the night. 
I will go Lord, if you lead me. 
I will hold your people in my heart.

I, the Lord of wind and flame, I will tend the poor and lame. 
I will set a feast for them. My hand will save. 
Finest bread I will provide ‘till their hearts be satisfied. 
I will give my life to them. Whom shall I send?
 
Here I am Lord. Is it I Lord? 
I have heard you calling in the night. 
I will go Lord, if you lead me. 
I will hold your people in my heart.

Blessing

May the One who calls us in the night and the day,
the One who encourages us to do edgy things,
and the One who inspires us through the everyday things of life,
call, encourage and inspire you, that you may follow.
And the blessing of Almighty God,
Father, Son, and Holy Spirit,
be with you and all now and always, Amen.
 

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