Sunday, July 12, 2020
"A God who is never angry in response to human sin would be a God who does not care, who lacks compassion who is willing to turn away from the creation and ignore its pain." ~ Daniel Simundson, “Micah”
Call To Worship
Adapted from the Hymn, “Come! Live in the Light!” GtG #749

Come! Live in the light! Shine with the joy and the love of the Lord!
We are called to be the light for the kingdom, to live in the freedom of the city of God.
Come! Open your heart! Show your mercy to all those in fear!
We are called to be hope for the hopeless so hatred and violence will be no more.
Sing! Sing a new song! Sing of the great day when all will be one!
God will reign, and we’ll walk with each other as sisters and brother united in love.
Hymn O for a World
Encountering God's Word
Prayer for Illumination
As we hear words of judgment and hope, we pray, Holy Spirit, that you would teach us what we need to know. May we not be overcome by what is harsh or complacent by what is soothing so that we may live rightly before you. Amen.

Micah 6:1-8 (NRSV)
Hear what the Lord says:
     Rise, plead your case before the mountains,
     and let the hills hear your voice.
Hear, you mountains, the controversy of the Lord,
     and you enduring foundations of the earth;
for the Lord has a controversy with his people,
     and he will contend with Israel.
“O my people, what have I done to you?
     In what have I wearied you? Answer me!
For I brought you up from the land of Egypt,
     and redeemed you from the house of slavery;
and I sent before you Moses,
     Aaron, and Miriam.
O my people, remember now what King Balak of Moab devised,
     what Balaam son of Beor answered him,
and what happened from Shittim to Gilgal,
     that you may know the saving acts of the Lord.”  
“With what shall I come before the Lord,
     and bow myself before God on high?
Shall I come before him with burnt offerings,
     with calves a year old?
Will the Lord be pleased with thousands of rams,
     with ten thousands of rivers of oil?
Shall I give my firstborn for my transgression,
     the fruit of my body for the sin of my soul?”
He has told you, O mortal, what is good;
     and what does the Lord require of you
but to do justice, and to love kindness,
     and to walk humbly with your God?

In "Ater the Hashtag", Rev. Beth Patton addresses the millenia old question "with what shall I come before the Lord?" Here she asks the church of today, "What is our role as individual Christians and as a community of faith during this time of significant social and political change and within the context of the global pandemic? How do we avoid going back to business as usual? How do we, the church, actually do our part to make the future look more like God's kingdom?" (To hear the sermon, click the image above.)
Prayers of the People
Holy God, you reveal yourself in so many ways, especially in Jesus Christ, your Son. We gather up the prayers of this community for the church, the world, and all in need, confident that you know our deepest thoughts and will refresh our spirits. We pray in the name of the One who transforms principalities and powers and renews the heavens and the earth, Christ our Lord.
Hear us, O God, your mercy is great.
For the church. We pray for our sisters and brothers all over the world. Wherever the church is found, wherever your people are living into your call of justice and kindness, walking humbly with you, empower its witness to strengthen and stretch the vision and actions of your people until we mirror the One whose name we claim as the church, Jesus Christ.
Hear us, O God, your mercy is great.
For an end to violence, oppression, racism, and injustice: we pray for all who call out as prophets, declaring it is time and past time to dismantle broken systems that oppress, to speak up when a sister or brother is harmed, to not stand idly by while injustice continues. Lead your people from complicity to compassion, from resignation to restitution, from avoidance to action.
Hear us, O God, your mercy is great.
For our leaders, local and national, take away selfish pride, greed, and willful ignorance and give them ears to hear the cries of the people, eyes to see what is happening in their midst, minds to discern what is good and right, and hearts to serve those who most need them.
Hear us, O God, your mercy is great.
We pray for those we hold dear and those who have asked for our prayers. We pray for everyone who is in any need, for the lonely, for all filled with anxiety and fear, for our elders in nursing homes or otherwise isolated ,for those who cannot find work and those whose work puts them in harms way for the benefit of others, and for all those we would name before you now....
Hear us, O God, your mercy is great.
For our own lives, stir us to extend ourselves beyond what we thought was possible. Embolden us to faithful service that does not shrink back in fear or self-preservation. Let us remember the faithful who have gone before us and all those who have lived and died fighting for a better world for all your children. As your light has shone through them, may it guide us now.
Hear us, O God, your mercy is great.
The Lord's Prayer
Hymn Micah 6:8
Charge and Benediction
Adapted from the Hymn, “For Everyone Born” GtG #769
For everyone born, a place at the table.
For everyone born, clean water and bread.
For everyone born, a place at the table.
For everyone born, revising the roles and dividing the power.
For everyone born, a place at the table.
For everyone born, to live without fear, to work, to speak out, the right to be free.
God will delight when we are creators of justice and joy, compassion and peace! Amen.

The liturgy for this service was put together by Beth Patton and Ann Gibbs with resources from Beth Merrill Neel (Call to Confession and Prayer of Confession) and Michelle Henrichs (Assurance of Forgiveness and Prayer of Illumination). The depiction of the prophet (top) is from the artist Ibrahem Usama. The prayers of the people is adapted from from the Prayers of Intercession for the fourth Sunday in Advent, Feasting on the Word, Liturgies for Year C, volume 1.