Worship at Home – Sunday 19 Sept 2021
This short act of worship has been prepared for you to use at home. We invite you to spend a few moments with God, knowing that other people across the Methodist Connexion are sharing this act of worship with you.
Lord and Father of all
Jesus taught us that greatness
is not as the world sees it,
but comes when we humble
ourselves in service to others.
Help our minds and hearts be open to your teachings today. Amen
Hymn: 362 from Singing the Faith – Meekness and majesty
Sing/ Read /pray /proclaim the words or listen to it here
Meekness and majesty,
manhood and deity,
in perfect harmony —
the man who is God.
Lord of eternity,
dwells in humanity,
kneels in humility
and washes our feet.
Oh, what a mystery —
meekness and majesty:
bow down and worship,
for this is your God,
this is your God!
Father’s pure radiance,
perfect in innocence,
yet learns obedience
to death on a cross:
suffering to give us life,
conquering through sacrifice —
and as they crucify,
prays, ‘Father forgive.’
God the invisible,
in frailty appears:
Lord of infinity,
stooping so tenderly,
lifts our humanity
to the heights of his throne.
Graham Kendrick (b. 1950)
O what a mystery meekness and majesty
Bow down and worship for this is your GodThis is your God
This is your God
Let us pray together
Lord God, we give you thanks and praise for your Son Jesus who showed us, that true greatness is known in serving others.
The way of wisdom is found in childlike humility, with hearts lifted high, we offer you our thanks and praise for loving us and showing us the way to be your disciples. Amen
We know that in your eyes, it is not social status, or wealth or reputation that count.
Forgive us we pray when our lives are taken over by these worldly values. Amen
Here is the good news for all who put their trust in Christ. Jesus says your sins are forgiven. Amen
James 3: 13 – 4: 3, 7-8a
Two Kinds of Wisdom
Who is wise and understanding among you? Show by your good life that your works are done with gentleness born of wisdom. But if you have bitter envy and selfish ambition in your hearts, do not be boastful and false to the truth. Such wisdom does not come down from above, but is earthly, unspiritual, devilish. For where there is envy and selfish ambition, there will also be disorder and wickedness of every kind. But the wisdom from above is first pure, then peaceable, gentle, willing to yield, full of mercy and good fruits, without a trace of partiality or hypocrisy. And a harvest of righteousness is sown in peace for those who make peace.
Friendship with the World
Those conflicts and disputes among you, where do they come from? Do they not come from your cravings that are at war within you? You want something and do not have it; so, you commit murder. And you covet something and cannot obtain it; so you engage in disputes and conflicts. You do not have, because you do not ask. You ask and do not receive, because you ask wrongly, in order to spend what you get on your pleasures.
Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. Draw near to God, and he will draw near to you. Cleanse your hands, you sinners, and purify your hearts, you double-minded.
Today’s Gospel Reading:
Mark 9: 30-37
Jesus Again Foretells His Death and Resurrection
They went on from there and passed through Galilee. He did not want anyone to know it; for he was teaching his disciples, saying to them, ‘The Son of Man is to be betrayed into human hands, and they will kill him, and three days after being killed, he will rise again.’ But they did not understand what he was saying and were afraid to ask him.
Who Is the Greatest?
Then they came to Capernaum; and when he was in the house he asked them, ‘What were you arguing about on the way?’ But they were silent, for on the way they had argued with one another about who was the greatest. He sat down, called the twelve, and said to them, ‘Whoever wants to be first must be last of all and servant of all.’ Then he took a little child and put it among them; and taking it in his arms, he said to them, ‘Whoever welcomes one such child in my name welcomes me, and whoever welcomes me welcomes not me but the one who sent me.’
Time to Reflect
The media is full of people who claim that they are great, but what really makes a person great? The media uses it to say, what people have done or said, and sometimes they promote a person to idol status.
Mohammed Ali used to have a saying that he was the greatest, because he could beat anyone in the boxing ring.
In our readings today Jesus teaches the disciples about greatness. The disciples had been having an argument as they were walking along the road. Not about what they heard, or where they were going, but about who among them was the greatest. I did wonder how they were measuring their greatness, perhaps it was
- The one who learnt the most, or
- The one who had provided the most or
- The one who had brought the most people to Jesus.
They all felt they had reasons for thinking that they were the greatest.
In his letter James was addressing the churches, about this kind of rivalry, which was happening in the churches, he says it stems from the desires that are within them, and when they do not get what they want they fight and quarrel.
We can see the same in our churches today.
When I started attending church, I sat on the back pew next to someone I knew. On the 4th week I was there, a woman came and stood in front of me and said, I was in her place, and then lectured me on how she had worked her way up from the front pew to the back to earn that seat. What I eventually found out was; that in winter, the pew was a warmer seat because it had a heater behind it.
Jesus wanted the disciples to understand that the role of discipleship is not about power and status, but about serving. Jesus called a child over to help Him explain.
A child in their culture had nothing to offer, he or she had no status. A child would be at the beck and call of the adults and was expected to be obedient and serve the adults.
Jesus told the disciples that one who serves those who can offer nothing in return will be the greatest.
Today Methodists along with other churches are learning this way of discipleship with Nightstop, Foodbanks and charity groups that help the vulnerable people in their towns and villages across the whole of Britain.
The vulnerable people, are those perhaps through no fault of their own, have come to the edge of society. They may have been made redundant, or their benefits have not been paid, and in some cases, they have sold everything they have to settle their debts and are left with nothing. With this work, people are now beginning to revise their opinion of those who go to church. They no longer see us as a load of goody goodies, but as a group of people who care for others in our community.
The people who we help, ask ‘are we getting paid for the work’ after all, a lot of the people who they meet, would not do work for nothing. When our answer is ‘No’, they want to know why do we do it? The answer is; because our faith teaches us, to love and care for our neighbours.
A time of prayer: –
Let us offer our prayer with all God’s people through Jesus Christ our Lord who ever lives to pray for us.
We pray for the needs of the world…
We pray for the Church…
We pray for all in trouble or distress…
We pray for all who make a new beginning today…
God of compassion and mercy
Listen to our prayer
May what we ask in Jesus’ name be done according to his word. Amen
The Lord’s Prayer
Our Father in heaven, hallowed be your name. Your Kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as in heaven
Give us today our daily bread.
Forgive us our sins, as we forgive those who sin against us.
Save us from the time of trial, and deliver us from evil.
For the kingdom, the power and the glory are yours. Now and for ever. Amen.
Hymn: Listen to StF 272 – From heaven you came helpless babe
From heaven you came, helpless babe,
entered our world, your glory veiled,
not to be served but to serve,
and give your life that we might live.
This is our God, the Servant King,
he calls us now to follow him,
to bring our lives as a daily offering
of worship to the Servant King.
There in the garden of tears
my heavy load he chose to bear;
his heart with sorrow was torn,
‘Yet not my will but yours,’ he said.
Come see his hands and his feet,
the scars that speak of sacrifice,
hands that flung stars into space
to cruel nails surrendered.
So let us learn how to serve
and in our lives enthrone him,
each other’s needs to prefer,
for it is Christ we’re serving.
Graham Kendrick (b. 1950)
A prayer of blessing
May God our Father, strengthen us,
May Christ Jesus show us the way to serve,
May the Holy Spirit make us fruitful in all we do. And May the peace and love of our God
be always with us. Amen
Original Materials by Linda Ashworth
Hymns reproduced under CCLi 1144191.
St Helens Methodist Church CCLi No 1169248
We are grateful to all the Ministers and Local Preachers from around the Connexion who have contributed to Worship at Home. This resource is administrated by Ministries: Vocations and Worship in the Connexional Team.
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