The Presbyterian Church at Woodbury

March 7, 2021
Third Sunday in Lent
9:30 am

PRAYER OF PREPARATION

O Gracious and loving God, we enter your gates with thanksgiving, your courts with praise.  Lord, it’s so good to be in your presence.  It’s so good to be in the company of our fellow Christians.  We thank you for welcoming us into your presence; though unworthy to be here, in Christ, we approach your throne with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our times of need.  Amen.

PRELUDE                   Chorale Prelude on “Hamburg”                  Giamando

CALL TO WORSHIP

You who live in the shelter of the Most High, You who abide in the shadow of the Almighty will say to the Lord, “My refuge and my fortress, my God in whom I trust.” Under God’s wings we will find refuge; his faithfulness will be our shield and rampart.  To God alone be all glory and honor, forever and ever.  Let us worship the Lord our God!

Click for: HYMN No. 223 “When I Survey the Wondrous Cross”

CALL TO RECONCILIATION

Friends, let us confess our sins to God, for the Holy One is steadfast in love and always ready to forgive.

PRAYER FOR FORGIVENESS

God of our lives, we struggle to be hopeful people.  Our lives seem filled with pains that weaken us, and we do not hope.  Our lives seem filled with problems that tax our spirits, and we do not hope.  We take refuge in eating or drinking or medicating.  We take refuge in acquiring more things.  We take refuge in what the present world offers us.  We do not hope in your promise to be with us at all times, merciful God.  Our hope is in you, and no other.  Have mercy on us, O Lord, and forgive us for those things we now acknowledge in the whisperings of our own hearts.  Amen.

Silence is observed

Click for: RESPONSE No. 697 “Take My Life” v. 3

ASSURANCE OF PARDON

Friends, the steadfast love of the Lord never ceases; God’s mercies never come to an end.  They are new every morning.  Great is God’s faithfulness.  Friends, in Jesus Christ we are forgiven and restored. Thanks be to God.

PASSING OF THE PEACE OF CHRIST

Our peace comes from knowing how much God loves us in Jesus Christ. With God’s help, we try to love and forgive one another as Christ loves and forgives us. “The peace of Christ be with you,” “And also with you.”

ANTHEM                   “The River of the Water of Life”                             Archer

CHILDREN’S MESSAGE

(all children will remain in the sanctuary)

PRAYER OF ILLUMINATION

“May the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be pleasing to you, O Lord, my rock and my redeemer.”  Amen.

SCRIPTURE

Ezekiel 1:1-3

In the thirtieth year, in the fourth month, on the fifth day of the month, as I was among the exiles by the river Chebar, the heavens were opened, and I saw visions of God. On the fifth day of the month (it was the fifth year of the exile of King Jehoiachin), the word of the Lord came to the priest Ezekiel son of Buzi, in the land of the Chaldeans by the river Chebar; and the hand of the Lord was on him there.

Matthew 5:13-16

13 “You are the salt of the earth; but if salt has lost its taste, how can its saltiness be restored? It is no longer good for anything, but is thrown out and trampled under foot. 14 “You are the light of the world. A city built on a hill cannot be hid. 15 No one after lighting a lamp puts it under the bushel basket, but on the lampstand, and it gives light to all in the house. 16 In the same way, let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father in heaven.

SERMON       “A Vision of God!”                 Rev. Dr. Mouris Yousef

AFFIRMATION OF FAITH            The Nicene Creed

We believe in one God, the Father, the Almighty, maker of heaven and earth, of all that is, seen and unseen. We believe in one Lord, Jesus Christ, the only Son of God, eternally begotten of the Father, God from God, Light from Light, true God from true God, begotten, not made, of one Being with the Father; through him all things were made. For us and for our salvation he came down from heaven, was incarnate of the Holy Spirit and the Virgin Mary and became truly human. For our sake he was crucified under Pontius Pilate; he suffered death and was buried. On the third day he rose again in accordance with the Scriptures; he ascended into heaven and is seated at the right hand of the Father. He will come again in glory to judge the living and the dead, and his kingdom will have no end. We believe in the Holy Spirit, the Lord, the giver of life, who proceeds from the Father and the Son, who with the Father and the Son is worshiped and glorified, who has spoken through the prophets. We believe in one holy catholic and apostolic Church. We acknowledge one baptism for the forgiveness of sins. We look for the resurrection of the dead, and the life of the world to come. Amen.

Click for: HYMN No. 518 “Your Only Son – Lamb of God”

THE SACRAMENT OF HOLY COMMUNION

ANNOUNCEMENTS

OFFERING OF TITHES & OFFERINGS

And now, not because we have to, but because we are grateful, let us return to God what is ours to share. Let us joyfully offer our time, our treasure, our commitment, our prayers.

OFFERTORY

RESPONSE

PRAYER OF DEDICATION

It is out of gratitude that we present to you our tithes and offerings, gracious God.  Help us to always remember your generosity in our lives.  Use these gifts and our lives to bring the good news of Jesus Christ to this community and beyond.  In Jesus name we pray.  Amen.

Click for: HYMN No. 409 “God Is Here!”

BENEDICTION

Dear brothers and sisters in Christ, stand firm.  Let nothing move you.  Always give yourselves fully to the work of the Lord, because you know that your labor in the Lord is not in vain. And now may the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit be with you all. Amen.