welcomed us and called us to worship and led us in acknowledgement and joy.
This is the day that the
Lord has made; let us rejoice and be glad in it. (Psalm 118: 24)
It is our privilege that we can gather together to draw close to each other and
L. In the previous week we have all
experienced many events and emotions.
Today is the day and this is the time when we can lay all our concerns before
Let us worship his
majesty and praise his great wisdom and love, asking him to turn what is
sometimes confusing in our lives into part of the great mission of spreading
his work of restoration.
Be with us O God. May we know your presence among us.
TIS 188 "Where wide sky rolls down and
touches red sand."
sky rolls down and touches red sand - Where sun turns to gold the
grass of the land
Let spinifex mulga and waterhole tell - Their
joy in the One who made everything well.
Smith’s beautiful Hymn perfectly captures this amazing joy we can share in
of Adoration and Thanksgiving. – These responsive prayers were led by Chris
Philippians 2: 9 – 11 Therefore God also highly exalted him
And gave him the name That is above every name,
So that at the name of
Jesus Every knee should bend,
In heaven and in earth and under the earth
And every tongue should
That Jesus Christ is Lord,
To the glory of God the
Our Lord of Light and Love - We thank you
for your guidance in our lives
Leading us in the way we should go. We thank you for your most generous gifts to
The gifts of community, family and
friends. We thank you for supporting our
flawed and weak natures - And for the strength you give us day by day. We thank
you for this beautiful land
the gift of belonging we have been given as we journey together here.
For all these and so much more, we give you praise and adoration. Amen.
– Our prayers of
Confession were led by Chrisanthi, with Grahame playing some reflective music.
In penitence and faith,
let us confess our sins to Almighty God.
Our Lord God, we bring
before you all our sins: all of our thoughts and actions that lead us to being
less than whole.
confess the times each day that we are less than the people we could be if only
we had kept our eyes upon you. We
confess our sins against our neighbours, not just those in our street or suburb
but those in other parts of Australia
and overseas, against whom we have sinned by neglect - by looking the other way
- by maintaining our ignorance for fear of having to act.
confess, and regret so much, our sins against those we love. Out irritable replies. Our impatience with the weaknesses of others;
all the time remaining blind to our own weaknesses and flaws. We confess our neglect of your creation and
ask that you will open our eyes to new ways of stewardship. We confess the times we have not even
bothered to seek your will, but have blundered on in our own proud way, undoing
the magnificence of your plan for the world and us.
For all our sins, we ask for forgiveness and ask that you will guide us in true
delivered those welcome Words of Assurance - If we confess our sins, God
is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and cleanse us from all
Thanks be to God. Amen.
accepted our offerings for God’s work and Announcements were made.
Address – Marcia told the
story of David and Goliath for children young and old.
TIS 232 "O the deep, deep love of Jesus"
Bible Readings Acts
3: 12 – 19 Page 838
24: 36b – 48 Page
Alan read from Acts about the events following the miracle of the healing of
the crippled man begging at the temple.
Next we heard about the reaction of the Disciples when Jesus suddenly
appeared among them and explained that his death and resurrection had all been
explained already in the Scriptures and as witnesses they would be given the
gift of God’s Power to go out and offer the gift of forgiveness of their sins
to all nations.
Jesus was buried. Jesus lives!
“habitually honest” and sometimes an “over-thinker” Margaret began by
confessing to having “great difficulty in knowing how to approach the matter
of miracles.” She floated the
interesting idea that in performing miracles God may be “breaking his own
found the “pros and cons” of Margaret’s discussions with various Christian
friends, theology lecturers and other “learned people” quite stimulating,
although basically I am happy to define miracles as daily happenings – often
little things surprising us in an unexpected way with the feeling that God is
prodding all of us to make the world better through our Christian love inspired
by His love for us. I see many fleeting
“miracles” seemingly of little significance to most of society!
I can accept the more spectacular and unlikely Biblical Miracles without too
much concern; but then -I am not a theological student and am a bit lazy if I
am required to think too hard.
talking about a number of interpretations of God’s miracles recorded in various
Biblical passages most of us smiled when Margaret announced; “Not that any
of this is causing me to have a crisis in faith.”
regard to the reading from Luke: if you take the time to read the end of each
of the gospels and the beginning of Acts and other references which all cover
the time span from Jesus' burial onwards, you will find that there are
differences, except these three very important things.
Jesus died. Jesus was buried. Jesus lives!”
is not enough space here to share all the helpful thoughts that followed, but
for me the fact that we are loved exactly the way we are today was the best –
we can approach God and he will protect us from our own flaws and stupidity if
we admit our imperfections.
then God is kept busy if we lock him out, thinking we can manage on our own and
take back command of our own lives. “The gift of God's love is not like
other gifts. We don't put it in a drawer, or on a shelf. We don't even wear it. It flows through us.
God's love is ours to pass on to others.
In ways big and small. If we were
closer to being what we should be, that love would flow naturally, without
need to commit again and again. We need to let God run things. And we need to remain alert to God's voice
telling us our part of that great plan for everyone to know God's love.”
our message is; “The living Jesus loves you and that love is given to you in
overflowing measure to share with the world around you. In that way we can be
part of the miracles God works among us. It's your move.”Amen.
TIS 407 "Breathe on me breath of God"
of the People – Margaret
invited us to take time for contemplation and private prayer. She prayed that God would draw us towards our
neighbours with love and help us to show God’s Love to the world. Margaret prayed for wisdom for those who
govern in any capacity, to meet the needs of the poor and the oppressed, the
sick, the uneducated, the depressed, the Spiritually and physically hungry in
our midst. She prayed that God’s people
will act as his hand and voice as we show his love to the world. We then prayed
the Lord’s Prayer. Amen.
TIS 665 "Jesus is Waiting"
- Margaret sent us
away in Peace – renewed and refreshed in the eternal love of God and prayed
that He would make us holy in His Love and enriched by His Grace. That we may be strengthened with joy and
blessed and kept in Eternal Life. Amen.
Hymn TIS 778 "Shalom to you my friend"
"Uniting in Worship 2" was used as a resource for this Service.
be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ.
great mercy we have been born anew to a living hope
the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead.
Hallelujah!Christ is risen. He is risen indeed.
then welcomed us as one people, in unity with Christians the world over,
to hear the good news.
TIS 155 "How
great thou art" When we think on how great the blessings are that have
been bestowed upon us, our only response can be: How great thou art!
of Adoration and Confession
this prayer, Richie spoke of God's amazing creation and of us, as not only as
his creation but as the first fruits of his new creation, asking that we will
rejoice in this new day.
God of all majesty, and beyond any estimation of value, Richie offered
blessing, glory, honour and power.
then led us in our confession of our sin:
are truly sorry and we humbly repent. And for the sake of your Son Jesus
Christ, We ask that you will have mercy on us, and forgive us; that we may
delight in your will and walk humbly with you, to the glory of your name.
then Christ's word of grace to us: 'Your sins are forgiven.'"
be to God.
TIS 217 "Love
divine, all loves excelling" A prayer to God to dwell within us, thereby
making us whole, never leaving us.
20: 19-31 The disciples were hiding away when Jesus appeared among them,
showing them his wounds. But Thomas wasn't there and so wouldn't believe their
story about Jesus’ visit. But when Jesus
visited again, Thomas did believe: "My Lord and my God."
1:1-2:2 Referring to the risen Jesus, John says: that God is light and in him
there is no darkness at all. He continues to warn his readers that we must
confess our sins and that when we do that we have an advocate with the Father.
began by speaking about the original 12 disciples and speculating about who was
the best known. Judas comes to mind as the traitor and Peter was famous for
many things but the man that who came to be synonymous with doubt was Thomas.
modern church welcomes doubt, welcomes questions, but not all questions will be
answered so the only solution is to step out in faith. Faith in Jesus, trust in
not talking about trusting in what we hear about Jesus. This is trust or faith
didn't say that he believed that Jesus had risen from the dead. He said,
"My Lord and my God."
appearances were not just to establish that he had risen. They were to
establish who he was.
church grew because people who never saw Jesus believed in him, trusted in him.
you have seen me, you have found faith. Happy are they who never saw me and yet
have found faith." v.29
have these people believed?" "Why doesn't someone today need the
same evidence that Thomas and the others needed? …the difference, I think, is that the subsequent generations
of Christians have had the Holy Spirit working in their hearts." Otherwise
we would all be dumbfounded.
does seem to be though, that it is the action of the Holy Spirit within
us that enables us to take the leap from hearing the message, knowing things
about Jesus, to believing in him.”
can happen in many ways: John Wesley, on hearing Martin Luther's preface to the
Epistle to the Romans related that "I felt my heart strangely
warmed." He had known the story of Jesus for some time but it was only
then that he realised God's grace.
our reception of grace comes responsibilities. Richie made the point that
Christians should be forgiving sins. When we are confronted with evil - in the
myriad of forms it takes in this earth, our task is to forgive.
bible offers more, much more about Jesus but to return to the subject of doubt:
"Today, our doubts are put to rest by the presence of the Holy Spirit, if
we will only open our hearts to the Spirit's presence."
TIS 315 "Mine
eyes have seen the glory." A stirring declaration that the lyricist can
see God's glory and God's triumph approaching. His triumph which is in our
hands. Maybe not the type of triumph some would hope for but the triumph of his
received and dedicated to the work of God's kingdom.
and Eternal God, whose goodness and grace overflowed when you raised Jesus from
the dead, Let your goodness and grace continue to flow upon your people."
prayed for the stone to be figuratively rolled away for those whose path to new
life is blocked; for those in despair and for those in ill-health.
was then given for the life of Luke Shambrook.
light of the resurrection, Richie prayed for the world: for areas of hostility
and violence: areas of famine and disease: for the family of Stephanie Scott
and the family of the three children drowned in the lake.
on our behalf, prayed for the church world-wide and at Marsden Road that wise
and sensitive leadership be given. We then prayed for those people associated
with Marsden Road who are ill or in other need, joining together for The
TIS 380 "Yours
be the glory" This hymn reminds us that God's victory is forever. It is
the victory that supports us in every part of our life and in every area of our
inner being, bringing us new life.
has loved us with an everlasting love, and even when we were far off, he met us
in his son Jesus and brought us home. We come to know Jesus today through the
scriptures, through the witness of faithful Christians of all the ages, and
through the indwelling of the Holy Spirit.
have been reminded today: blessed are those who have not seen and yet have
we go out, let us be assured of that blessing - the blessing of God Almighty:
Father, Son and Holy Spirit."
worship This is the good news The grave is
empty, Christ is risen. Hallelujah!
This is the good
news Once we were no people,Now we are God’s people. Hallelujah!
HymnTIS 370‘Christ the Lord is risen today, Alleluia.' As Christ rose, so are we
guaranteed liberation from the sin that deadens our soul. We may soar above the
banal and downright evil to live lives of victory.
Praise and Thanksgiving and Confession
Jan began with an
Easter prayer, declaring that "early in the morning" God made the
world; Jesus was born; Jesus accepted the penalty for doing good; and Jesus
rose from the dead. HALLOWED BE THY NAME. She continued the prayer, leading a
celebration of all that has happened and asking that our Lord would bring new
life, new love, forgiveness, the joy and freedom of the Holy Spirit instead of
all those things that drag us into despair. She then, further declared that 'where regret is real, Jesus pronounces his
pardon and grants us the right to begin again.’Thanks be to God. Amen.
Words of Assurance
Hear Christ's words
of grace to us. Our sins are forgiven.
Hymn TIS 342‘When I survey the wondrous cross’ Humility strikes. Pierces our body. We are struck with our own
feebleness and weakness and throw ourselves in God's mercy.
Readings- Laurel read from Isaiah
25:6-9: The prediction of God's triumph and
Mark 16:1-8: The reality of God's triumph.
Sermon- 'Living hope for life'
Jan announced that
today we celebrate the resurrection of Christ Jesus our Lord. She reminded us
that "the first Easter was an incredible day, one that started with
disbelief, with fear and trembling and bewilderment beside an empty tomb, and
ended with astonishment, excitement and thanksgiving." Even though the
disciples had seen and heard many marvellous things during their time with
Jesus, they didn't expect to see him again after his crucifixion.
No one expected a
resurrection. They were huddled in an upper room - just as we would be. Hiding
in fear - just as we would. But "Jesus... was able to break through death
and transform it".
This restored the
hopes of the disciples - this brought to life their uncertain convictions. The
details about the sharing of the news concerning Jesus’ resurrection is uncertain as are any details of his
appearance to his followers. But the news was shared - that is certain because
we are here today celebrating the event - and the frightened disciples would
never have had the courage to continue preaching without such a startling
revelation as Jesus living.
As it was, they went
from being people afraid of dying to being people who offered their lives to
help others to come to the faith.
"God can bring
good out of evil, love out of hate, and hope out of despair,"
"The Easter joy
of resurrection life is real, when we embrace the life that God has called us
to live and to know Jesus’ presence with us always". Amen.
OfferingWe made our freewill offering to be
used to spread God's message of new life.
Grahame played while
we prayed silently.
Laurel prayed to
God, drawing our attention to the purpose of today being the celebration of
God's great love, shown through Jesus' death and resurrection. She asked that
we should become partners with God, acting with love and compassion in this
world. She reminded us of those shuffering terrible violence, war, hunger,
natural disasters, injustice and inequality. She prayed for God to be with them
and alleviate their distress, particularly refugees who have left everything
they had in search of safety, asking that they be treated with care and
At home we prayed
for travellers in the present wet conditions and for Malcolm and Lyn as they
travel far from us. Laurel prayed for our Marsden Road community and those who
cannot do all that they would like to because of their physical condition.
Laurel prayed for the particular concerns of the congregation, adding that we
feel inadequate in the face of all the needs of which we are aware, so prayed
for God's guidance and strength in our attempts to be his hands and voice. We
concluded with The Lord's Prayer.
HymnTIS 511 'Let us break bread together with the Lord'In all that we do and say may we be directed
by God. Always.
us: The Peace of God be with you
always. And our reply 'And also with you' prepared us for the communion to
follow as did our offering of the peace to each other.
Jan led us into
communion explaining that the table we shared with Jesus and all that love him
is also shared with the poor and followed with an invitation for anyone seeking
to further or renew their relationship with God to share. Then followed the
story of the Last Supper, explaining that we were about to follow that example.
The Great Prayer of Thanksgiving ended with a prayer of adoration after which
Jan blessed the bread and wine, asking that by sharing in them, we would be
renewed. Jan then held the bread and wine aloft, declaring them 'the gifts of
God for the people of God."
The bread and wine
were then distributed.
Hymn TIS 376“I know that my redeemer lives’. Not only a declaration but a celebration.
-The Lord bless you and keep you; the Lord make his face to shine upon
you, and be gracious to you; the Lord lift up his countenance upon you, and
give you peace. Amen
Blessing - TIS
781‘Father bless us as we go’A plea for God
to be with us at all times in the coming week.