Lord, lead me beside the still waters. Restore my soul, and lead me in the path of righteousness for your name’s sake. Amen
Prayer of the Bible
“Come, let us return to the Lord; for he has torn us, that he may heal us; he has struck us down, and he will bind us up. After two days he will revive us; on the third day he will raise us up, that we may live before him. Let us know; let us press on to know the Lord; his going out is sure as the dawn; he will come to us as the showers, as the spring rains that water the earth.”
(Free expression of praise and thanksgiving to God)
Confession of Sin
May I return to you, my God, and hold fast to love and justice, and wait continually for you.”
(Time of silence for confession of sin)
The Words of Jesus
And when he returned to Capernaum after some days, it was reported that he was at home. And many were gathered together, so that there was no more room, not even at the door. And he was preaching the word to them. And they came, bringing to him a paralytic carried by four men. And when they could not get near him because of the crowd, they removed the roof above him, and when they had made an opening, they let down the bed on which the paralytic lay. And when Jesus saw their faith, he said to the paralytic, “Son, your sins are forgiven.”
-Mark 2: 1-5
(Think deeply on these life-giving words of Jesus)
Prayers for Ourselves and Others
If you abide in me, and my words abide in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you.
(Time to bring before God our own needs and the needs of others)
Gracious God, thank you for this gift of a life so rich with meaning and eternal purpose. Thank you for the awesome glory of being in Your image, the privilege of being a maker in Your kingdom. Open my ears to Your instruction, open my eyes to Your handiwork, open my heart to the joy of union with You. Take all that I am — my desires and sensitivities, my energy and strength, my flawed and finite being — and love Your world through me.
-Leanne Payne (1932-2015)