Posts Tagged ‘promise’

God says in Isaiah 58:6-7

Isn’t this the fast I choose:
releasing wicked restraints,
untying the ropes of a yoke,
setting free the mistreated,
& breaking every yoke?
Isn’t it sharing your bread with the hungry
& bringing the homeless poor into your house,
covering the naked when you see them,
and not hiding from your own family?

The purpose of Lent is to be a season of fasting, self-denial, Christian growth, penitence, conversion, and simplicity. Lent, which comes from the Teutonic (Germanic) word for springtime, can be viewed as a spiritual spring cleaning: a time for taking spiritual inventory and then cleaning out those things which hinder our corporate and personal relationships with Jesus Christ and our service to him. (John Birch)

May these 40 days before Easter be a time of spiritual spring cleaning, of removing what hinders and renewing what facilitates our relationships with God, the world, and one another.

The Worship of God for the Fifth Sunday in Lent

Passing the Peace 
Say to one another, “May the peace of Christ be with you.”
And reply, “And, also with you.”

Invitation to Worship

Jesus said,
“When I am lifted up from the earth, I will draw everyone to me.”

Come let us worship the One who draws us together,
who bears our burdens,
and forgives our sins.
Come let us worship!

Song of Praise
We Will Walk With God
Words: Eswatini Traditional (trans. J.L. Bell)
Tune: SIZOHAMBA (Eswatini Traditional)

Come and walk with me, my brothers.
We will walk with God.
Come and walk with me, my sisters.
We will walk with God.

We will go rejoicing,
til the kingdom has come. (Repeat)

See-zoh-hahm-bah nah-yay,
woh woh woh,
see-zoh-hahm-bah nah-yay. (Repeat)

Goom-shlah wen-jah-boo-lah,
see-zoh-hahm-bah nah-yay. (Repeat)

Come and walk with me, my brothers.
We will walk with God.
Come and walk with me, my sisters.
We will walk with God.

We will go rejoicing,
til the kingdom has come. (Repeat)

Opening Prayer
Let us pray:

Creator God,
we thank you for the beauty of your springtime creation,
awakening buds and blooms,
lengthening blue skies and sunshine.

Awaken hope within us.
Renew us.
May we be refreshed with energy and enthusiasm
to see you in the places where we live
and in the people around us.

Redeemer God,
we thank you for your son, Jesus,
for his parables and teaching,
healing and caring,
for his life and death and resurrection.

Awaken love within us.
Renew us.
May we share your love and care with others.
May we and they come close to you.

Companion God,
we thank you for your Holy Spirit,
for your comfort and guidance,
presence and trust.

Awaken faith within us.
Renew us.
May we share your way and life with others.
May we be a witness to your saving love.

Creator, Redeemer, Companion,
Father, Son and Holy Spirit,
we bring our praise and thanks to you.

Song of Adoration
O Day of Peace
Words: Carl P. Daw, Jr.
Tune: JERUSALM LMD (Parry)

O day of peace that dimly shines
through all our hopes and prayers and dreams,
guide us to justice, truth, and love,
delivered from our selfish schemes.
May swords of hate fall from our hands,
our hearts from envy find release,
till by God’s grace our warring world
shall see Christ’s promised reign of peace.

Then shall the wolf dwell with the lamb,
nor shall the fierce devour the small.
As beasts and cattle calmly graze,
a little child shall lead them all.
Then enemies shall learn to love,
all creatures find their true accord.
The hope of peace shall be fulfilled,
for all the earth shall know the Lord.

Psalm 51:1-12
Common English Bible

Have mercy on me, God, according to your faithful love!
Wipe away my wrongdoings according to your great compassion!
2 Wash me completely clean of my guilt;
purify me from my sin!
3 Because I know my wrongdoings,
my sin is always right in front of me.
4 I’ve sinned against you—you alone.
I’ve committed evil in your sight.
That’s why you are justified when you render your verdict,
completely correct when you issue your judgment.
5 Yes, I was born in guilt, in sin,
from the moment my mother conceived me.
6 And yes, you want truth in the most hidden places;
you teach me wisdom in the most secret space.

7 Purify me with hyssop and I will be clean;
wash me and I will be whiter than snow.
8 Let me hear joy and celebration again;
let the bones you crushed rejoice once more.
9 Hide your face from my sins;
wipe away all my guilty deeds!
10 Create a clean heart for me, God;
put a new, faithful spirit deep inside me!
11 Please don’t throw me out of your presence;
please don’t take your holy spirit away from me.
12 Return the joy of your salvation to me
and sustain me with a willing spirit.

Prayer for Forgiveness
O God, You who are always doing a new thing,
we confess that we sometimes close windows
against the fresh air of new ideas,
against the noise of other people’s worries,
against the winds of change.

God of every place and time,
we confess that we often draw the curtains
against people who are different,
against world news or community concerns.

Forgive us our insulation in our locked homes,
our shuttered churches,
the security systems on our hearts.
Open up our lives,
and let your Spirit blow through. Amen.

silent prayer and meditation

Assurance and Hope

Hear again the joy and gladness God provides and rejoice!

The Lord forgives.
The Lord wipes away all our guilty deeds.
The Lord cleans our hearts and puts new, faithful spirit deep within us.

Let the joy of the Lord’s salvation sustain you this day!

Create a Pure Heart in Me
Composer: Susan Matsui

Create a pure heart in me, O Lord.
Grant me a new and steadfast spirit.
Do not drive me away from thy presence,
or take thy Spirit from me.

Revive in me the joy of deliverance,
Grant me a steady soul to uphold me.
Open thou my lips, everlasting Lord,
that my mouth may sing thy praises.

Thou takest no delight in sacrifice,
nor hast thou any wish for whole offering.
My sacrifice, Lord, is a broken soul,
my offering, a contrite heart.

Jeremiah 31:31-34
Common English Bible

The time is coming, declares the Lord, when I will make a new covenant with the people of Israel and Judah. 32 It won’t be like the covenant I made with their ancestors when I took them by the hand to lead them out of the land of Egypt. They broke that covenant with me even though I was their husband, declares the Lord. 33 No, this is the covenant that I will make with the people of Israel after that time, declares the Lord. I will put my Instructions within them and engrave them on their hearts. I will be their God, and they will be my people. 34 They will no longer need to teach each other to say, “Know the Lord!” because they will all know me, from the least of them to the greatest, declares the Lord; for I will forgive their wrongdoing and never again remember their sins.

Reflection on Jeremiah
Rev. Jeffrey Vickery

Listen to the sermon or watch below.


Prayer of Thanksgiving 
Thank you, God for constant love.
Please help our church family grow
deeper and deeper in your love. Amen.

Song of Faith
God of Jeremiah
Words: Brian Wren

God of Jeremiah, grieving with an aching heart
for an empire, unbelieving as it falls apart,
when your thunder goes unheard, we will tend the prophet’s word,
and in season out of season, we will sing your song.

When our wound is left to fester, though the pain goes deep,
when we’ve sown a hundred whirlwinds, but have yet to reap,
when the platitudes of peace only make our fears increase,
with a poem and a story we will sing your song.

When the palace looks at poverty with scornful eyes,
when the scroll of truth is shredded by a leader’s lies,
when the glory of the cross is a propaganda gloss,
in the square and in the senate we will sing your song.

We will break the jar of plenty by the gates of gold,
we will buy a field of promise when the farm is sold,
at the ending of the dream, in the death of self-esteem,
at the bank and in the market we will sing your song.

We will praise the grainy granite of the Law’s demands,
and the life creating, Lover God with wounded hands;
we will spin your story line to an empire in decline,
and in exile or in honor we will sing your song.

Sending Out

Go now, to serve Christ and follow him.
Let your old life fall like a grain of wheat into the earth
so that you may bear much fruit
as you allow God to reshape your heart
and live in obedience to the law written within you.

And may God centre you in truth and steady your spirit.
May Christ renew your joy and strengthen your will.
And may the Spirit teach you God’s hidden wisdom
and fill you with songs of rejoicing.

We go in peace to love and serve the Lord,
In the name of Christ. Amen.

Blest Be the Tie 
by John Fawcett 

Blest be the tie that binds our hearts in Christian love. 
The fellowship of kindred minds is like to that above.

When we are called to part, it gives us inward pain; 
but we shall still be joined in heart, and hope to meet again. 

This glorious hope revives our courage by the way; 
while each in expectation lives and waits to see the day.  


  • The words by John Birch are posted on “Prayers for the season of Lent (” Accessed February 18, 2021.
  • The image was retrieved from
  • The Invitation to Worship is based on John 12:32.
  • The hymns are sung by Mindy, accompanied by Kendall on the djembe, Mindy on the ukelele, and Tonya on the piano and keyboard.
  • The opening prayer was written by Ruth Bowen and printed in Spring: Liturgical Resources for February, March, and April. Edited by Ruth Burgess. Published by Wild Goose Publications, the publishing house of the Iona Community, © 2019.
  • The Prayer for Forgiveness was posted by Teri on the RevGalBlogPals A Place for Prayer blog.
  • Create a Pure Heart in Me is sung by Laura, Elizabeth, Tonya, and Mindy, accompanied by Tonya on the piano.
  • The Sending Out was written by Nathan Nettleton and posted on © 2003.

    Permission to podcast / stream the music in this service obtained from ONE LICENSE with license #A-724755. All rights reserved.  All writings have been used by permission from the posting sites or authors.

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