Paper Service

                 Sunday 17th January 2021          


God's love is as great as the heavens,
his faithfulness reaches beyond the clouds,
his justice is as solid as the mountains.                                                       
Based on Psalm 36

 HYMN  No  404  Let all the world in every corner sing

Let us pray 

Almighty and everlasting God, maker of Heaven and Earth,
we are glad to come and worship you,
glad to stand in your presence
and give you the honour due to your name.
You are greater than our highest thoughts,
mightier than we can comprehend.
So we come before you,
acknowledging your greatness,
marveling in your power,
rejoicing in your love,
to celebrate your blessings,
and praise you for all the mercy,
you have shown to us,
throughout our lives. 

Accept our songs of praise,
and words of prayer,
the thoughts of our hearts,
and this act of worship.
Teach us more of all that you have done
and will continues to do,
and help us to show sincerity of what we offer now
by the way we live our lives
tomorrow and the days beyond. 

For praise and honour,
thanksgiving and worship
are yours by right. 

Loving God,
we have sometimes lost sight
of your great love,
we have been forgetful of you
greeting some days with indifference
even reluctance,
instead of welcoming you as a gift.
We have failed to count your blessings
or appreciate how fortunate we really are.
We know we have failed you in much that we do. 

Lord forgive us our sins,
and remember them no more.
Visit us with your healing power and redeeming love.
For the sake of your son our Saviour,
Jesus Christ.

                          The Lord's Prayer 

                   Our Father who art in Heaven
                   Hallowed be thy name
                   Thy Kingdom come
                   Thy will be done
                   On Earth as it is in heaven
                   Give us this day our daily bread
                   and forgive us our trespasses
                   as we forgive those who trespass against us
                   and lead us not into temptation
                   but deliver us from evil
                   For thine is the Kingdom
                   The power and the glory
                   for ever and ever


                         John 1: v 29-42 


Listening to the passage this morning from the Gospel reading, we can see that there is more than a two way process going on at the time, than the people in the story realized.

What Andrew and Simon Peter thought they were doing was looking for the Messiah.
They trail along behind him, rather than approaching him directly, until eventually he turns and asks them what they wanted. What they didn't realize, was, that the Messiah was looking for them. Eager in their excitement, they had no idea what this was going to lead to. 

There is an old saying often used in the armed forces, ‘don't  volunteer for anything, for you don't know what you are letting yourself in for'
I am sure at this stage neither Andrew or Simon Peter and even Philip and Nathanael, the next to be recruited, had any idea of the changes to their lives, and the dramatic events that  was to come, over the next three years.   Not the start of a new year as such, but a new era.  

For us today, meeting Jesus, for that is what being a Christian or disciple means, is also a two way thing. We are looking for him and he is looking for us. Being a follower is also a two way thing because we learn from him still, but we must also respond by following. We can't have a one way relationship, we can't just sit and take from him. We must also give. We must give him some of our time and some of our talents. The early disciples helped Jesus with his ministry, and so today we too should be helping to further his work. 

Jesus asked his new disciples to follow him. They did have the physical appearance of Jesus at the time, his words were easy to hear. In today's noisy world how ever we must listen carefully, and be 'tuned' into him. 

There is a well known hymn 'Dear Lord and father of mankind..... speak through the earthquake wind and fire, O still small voice of calm ' 

Peace and quiet and calm is the best place to hear that still small voice and become accustomed to it. Recognize it and then like the first disciples, respond.

For we too are called to him by name, to work with him for the good of the world. We are chosen and called to work in partnership  with God for the growth of his kingdom.  


Prayers of Intercession:

Bound together in the life of Christ,
let us bring before our Lord and father
our concerns  and needs
of the church and the world.

Let us pray:-

we commend to your love
all ministers of your word and sacrament;
keep them true to their calling
so that their life and work
brings many into contact with you. 

we commend to your wisdom
all who wield power;
help them to encourage reconciliation
rather than revenge,
rather than aggression,
and flexibility
rather than stubborn intransigence. 

we commend to your peace and joy
our homes and all homes within this community,
especially where there is conflict or distress;
dwell within us,
so that our homes
speak to every visitor of your love. 

we commend to your healing
all who are in pain or danger,
all who are recovering from surgery;
all who are suffering from Covid infection
all who depend on others for life and movement;
all who long for a friend who would visit them
and care for them. 

we bring before you, in silence,
those concerns on our prayer sheet and
those known only to ourselves. 

we commend to your keeping
those who have left this life
through the gate of death;
may they live with you
in the light of heaven forever. 

Loving Father,
we thank you for calling us
and we offer you the rest of our lives.
Accept these prayers
for the sake of your son,
our Savior
Jesus Christ. 


HYMN No  359 Jesus calls us o'er the tumult 


Lord Jesus Christ,
Let us go back to the daily round of life,
  to prepare your way,
  to work for your kingdom, 
  and to do all we can
  to bring that day of your coming nearer. 

And may what we have shared here
  transform all that we do and experience there.
  In the name of Christ.


 If you have a copy of Rejoice and Sing, you can read the words of the hymn at
the appropriate point

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The Hymn numbers refer to Rejoice and Sing, you may like to open them at the appropriate place