Acknowledgement of First Peoples
From river to ocean, from campfire to hearth,
May the First People who have cared for this Land be blessed.
From breath to song, from step to dance,
May those who follow Your Songlines guide us on the journey of living honourably in this place.
From greeting to Amen, from silence to chorus,
Call to Worship (Abingdon Worship Annual 2012 and 2018)
God who restores, who heals, who makes us whole, open our eyes to your work around us. Be in our praying, in our singing, in our proclamation, and in our silence. Open our eyes to see your kingdom coming into the world.
Jesus has come to town. Jesus, son of David, have mercy on us!
He invites us to join him on his journey. Jesus, son of David, have mercy on us!
Come and be healed and see with new eyes. Hallelujah! Thanks be to God!
And then we sang of our reliance on God. Or, at least, how our highest calling is reliance on God. Why do we think we know better so often?
Hymn TIS 112: “Through all the changing scenes of life”
Triune God, through Jesus Christ, our great and eternal High Priest, we give you praise and consecrate ourselves to follow you. As we worship you and celebrate your glorious resurrection, open our eyes so that we may see – open the eyes of our mind to learning and understanding; open the eyes of our heart, to your love and compassion; open the eyes of our soul, to see our spiritual selves during our time of worship. Amen.
Consecrating ourselves to God is not something to be done flippantly or without deep thought. It means that we turn aside from our own wishes and wants to seek God’s will in all things. It isn't a once-only event. We are called on daily to hand ourselves over to God’s plan for us and The Kingdom.
And to ensure that this continues to be so, and knowing how often we do stray from that commitment and consecration, we need to open ourselves and our failings to God and seek forgiveness.
Prayer of Confession
Mystical, transcendent God, there is so much of life we simply do not know.
In our arrogance we utter what we do not understand.
Rescue us, O Lord, from our afflictions.
Rescue us, O God from our self-inflicted wounds. Have mercy on us, Son of David, Son of God, and save us by your unending grace. Amen.
Declaration of Forgiveness
Cry out to Christ, our great High Priest, for he has saved us. Our faith has made us well, brought us forgiveness and granted us peace. Thanks be to God.
Hymn TIS 547. “Be thou my vision.” Keeping in track. Asking for the true path.
READINGS: Job 42:1-6, 10-17 : Mark 10: 46-52
Job says to a God: ‘I know that you can do all things, and that no purpose of yours can be thwarted. 3 “Who is this that hides counsel without knowledge? Therefore, I have uttered what I did not understand, things too wonderful for me, which I did not know.
A good lesson here for all of us. We don't have the knowledge and wisdom we need to do God’s will in God’s kingdom. We need to ask for guidance.
The lesson from Mark leans in the same direction:
Bartimaeus son of Timaeus, a blind beggar, was sitting by the roadside. 47 When he heard that it was Jesus of Nazareth, he began to shout out and say, ‘Jesus, Son of David, have mercy on me!’ 48 Many sternly ordered him to be quiet, but he cried out even more loudly, ‘Son of David, have mercy on me!’ 49 Jesus stood still and said, ‘Call him here.’ And they called the blind man, saying to him, ‘Take heart; get up, he is calling you.’ 50 So throwing off his cloak, he sprang up and came to Jesus.51 Then Jesus said to him, ‘What do you want me to do for you?’ The blind man said to him, ‘My teacher, let me see again.’ 52 Jesus said to him, ‘Go; your faith has made you well.’ Immediately he regained his sight and followed him on the way.
Remember, when we read the Bible we are looking for God’s voice and God’s message to us. I think it's clear here: The blind man asked to see and Jesus gave him sight. Usually, it's not physical sight we need, its spiritual sight. It works the same way.
Rev. John shared this with us:
“But when I share, through honest and open prayer, my frivolous or grave or noble or childlike wants with a gentle and loving God, God will use even these to increase my faithfulness, to uncover my hidden wounds, and to affirm my created goodness. Maybe, even, God is doing the wanting in me and through me; and my calling is to discover what the wanting is teaching me about who God is and who I am.”
John also told us of seeking guidance from a friend rather than turning to God. Talking to the friend was a way of avoiding God because he was afraid he would get it all wrong before God. I think this is a common experience. We hide our lack of knowledge and understanding from God, or so we think, but who better to turn to when we are in need?
Hymn TIS 223 “How sweet the name of a Jesus sounds in a believer’s ear.” The very hymn to hear and sing at the point to settle our troubled hearts and minds.
Laurel brought us the Prayers of the People. She brought before us and our Lord current concerns. God invites us to say what our needs are. Even if we have looked past our real needs, God will see our true needs. And so it is with confidence we were able to join Laurel in her prayers for those suffering in different ways.
Hymn TIS 160 “Father all-loving and ruling in majesty.” God is not one to fear. God is in charge and will hold us in the palm of his hand.
Go as the church, as Jesus' entourage, following where he leads. Everywhere he goes he leaves healing and hope in his wake. Go, and listen, and learn, and love. And may the blessing of God Almighty, Creator, Redeemer and Giver of Life be with you and remain with you always, Amen