Bradenton-Sarasota Congregation online worship
July 5, 2020
Invitation to Worship
Come and find the quiet center in the crowded life we lead,
Find the room for hope to enter, find the frame where we are freed;
Clear the chaos and the clutter, clear our eyes that we can see
All the things that really matter, be at peace, and simply be.
Preparation for Worship – I Will Rest in You by Jaci Velasquez
“Then spake Jesus, saying, Come unto me, all ye that labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart; and ye shall find rest unto your souls; for my yoke is easy and my burden is light.” Matthew 11:28-30
It is indeed a blessing to have a friend who listens when we need to talk. We need friends who forgive us when we say something hurtful, who overlook our shortcomings. Friends want to share both our joys and our sorrows. But sometimes those special friends cannot be with us when we need them most.
We do have a friend who said, “I am with you always.” That friend is Jesus. When we are overwhelmed by the day’s tasks or dragged down by doubts and fears, we can talk to him, for he has told us to come to him if we are burdened. He will give us rest. Perhaps the first step we should take when seeking to understand the needs of those who need to rest in Jesus is to simply listen.
Prayer for Peace
God of Grace and God of Glory,
In the safety of this quiet and sacred time we lift our voices in humble gratitude for your presence in our personal, spiritual and community lives. We are blessed daily by profoundly meaningful moments of your grace, not only the dramatic once-in-a-lifetime experiences, but also the small holy moments of insight when we are lead to think less about ourselves and more about others.
We know Jesus has told us to commit wholly to following him, to make our lives one of purpose, generous lives serving others in causes greater than ourselves, faith-filled lives of service, and respect of not only the differences in our fellow man but also the commonality in every life.
Our hearts ache for peace for all Earth’s peoples…for families, communities, nations and leaders; for unity not discord, inclusion not exclusion, for recognition of the worth of all persons and all of creation.
Touch us through your Holy Spirit to be vessels that carry and share your love, to serve and evidence your passion for all life, to serve your vision with boldness and courage. In the name of Jesus, our gift of peace, we pray. Amen.
Communion Message by Evangelist Glenn Day
Good morning brothers and sisters,
This is the day that the Lord hath made; we will rejoice and be glad in it.
Thou art my God, and I will praise thee, thou art my God, I will exalt thee.
O give thanks unto the Lord, for He is good; For His love endureth forever. Psalm 118
I have not written to you since March during Lent and Easter when we had about 5 weeks to “Rest In Jesus.” During that time we had opportunity to commune with Jesus, and in doing so He prepared us for the days, weeks and months ahead. We have learned a lot, new ways to communicate with our God, with one another and with worship.
We have been known as Baby Boomers and now we are Baby Zoomers. The advents of these past days are causing us to look at how we do things, and our priorities. Its also giving us time to look within ourselves as to how we think or feel about all that is going on in the our world
(thinking is with the head, feeling is with the heart).
During these last months looking inward at myself and listening to God, mostly through His written word, I have been able to see some things that have slipped a little in my thinking and my feelings. Maybe it was just from the fast pace of life or watching too much news or just me thinking too much with my head and not feeling as much with my heart.
Helen Keller once said: “The best and most beautiful things can not be felt by the touch; they must be felt with the heart.”
I praise God for His patience, love, and guidance and that I am able to Rest In Jesus.
Hear Jesus words:
“Come unto me, all ye that labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.
Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart; and ye shall find rest unto your souls.” Matthew 11:28-30
Our spiritual journey is often neglected for more pressing priorities in our lives. Jesus invites us today to refrain from what is pressing. His invitation is to “Come to me” and find relief and rest.
In Jesus name, Amen.
Reflection Moment – Rest
Invitation to Communion
All are welcome at Christ’s table. The Lord’s Supper, or Communion, is a sacrament in which we remember the life, death, resurrection, and continuing presence of Jesus Christ. In Community of Christ, we also experience Communion as an opportunity to renew our baptismal covenant and to be formed as disciples who live Christ’s mission. Others may have different or added understandings within their faith traditions. We invite all who participate in the Lord’s Supper to do so in the love and peace of Jesus Christ.
The Clearwater congregation has invited us on Sunday, July 5, to share in their Communion service. The Zoom call opens at 10:30 am. Click on this link for more information. Have your own communion emblems ready.
Disciples’ Generous Response
During the Disciples’ Generous Response we focus on aligning our purposes with God’s purposes, aligning our heart with God’s heart.
As you share your mission tithes or if you give regularly through eTithing, use this time to express gratitude for God’s many gifts in your life and to reflect on how we respond faithfully to those blessings. When we understand God’s love and grace are given freely to us, we respond out of gratitude and are liberated to share freely in return.
Blessing of Our Offering
God Who Is Always There,
On our own we know that we sometimes do not have the strength to be the people of compassion and generosity that we need to be. We know we are captivated by our own nature to serve ourselves and meet only our needs of the moment. As we offer our gifts to you this day, we are reminded that only through your presence with us and in us are we are able to live generously, act compassionately, and forgive mercifully. Help us keep our human nature contained and our divine nature unleashed! We pray in Christ’s name. Amen.
Meditation Moment – The God Who Sees
What a friend we have in Jesus! We are NEVER alone ….. there is a God who sees and listens and lifts us up again so be still, listen to His invitation, and REST IN HIM! Amen
This service was prepared by Carolyn Deering and Glenn Day.