11 July - Sabbath

11 July, 2021 Rev David Baker

READ

Genesis 2:1-3

Thus, the heavens and the earth were finished, and all their multitude. And on the seventh day God finished the work that he had done, and he rested on the seventh day from all the work that he had done. So, God blessed the seventh day and hallowed it, because on it God rested from all the work that he had done in creation.

Exodus 20:8-11

Remember the sabbath day, and keep it holy. Six days you shall labour and do all your work. But the seventh day is a sabbath to the Lord your God; you shall not do any work—you, your son or your daughter, your male or female slave, your livestock, or the alien resident in your towns. For in six days the Lord made heaven and earth, the sea, and all that is in them, but rested the seventh day; therefore, the Lord blessed the sabbath day and consecrated it.”

DISCUSS

- How has your week been?

- How have you seen God at work in your life this week?

- Read the passages again.

- Do you have a time of rest?

- Rest is an important part of our well-being. What do you do to rest?

- What is the pattern or rhythm you have to ensure that you have a rest or a break?

- What do the passages tell us about our relationship with God?

- What is challenging in this passage?

- Is there anything else the passage is saying to me?

- What am I going to do about it?

- Who am I going to share it with?

- Be prepared to share back next week.

PRAY

Heavenly Father, we thank you, for this rhythm of rest in our life of work. We hear your heart- beat when we are quiet and we listen quiet my heart I pray, and help me to be still before You. Lord, in the quietness of my mind and in the stillness of my heart, I ask that You would pour out the living water of Your Word to refresh my spirit and soul, and shower me with renewed strength, that only comes from You.

Thank You, that You have promised times of refreshing to all who turn away from sin and selfishness, and who have trusted the Lord Jesus as Savior.

Gladden my heart, refresh my soul and fill my mind with whatsoever things are lovely and of good report, and bring me into the unity of spirit and singleness of purpose with all who are called by Your name.

And Lord, I pray that as I am renewed in spirit and refreshed in my heart, that You would use me to be a vessel through whom times of refreshing is poured out to others, to the praise of Your holy name. In Jesus' name I pray,

Amen.

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4 July - God's Commandments

4 July, 2021 Rev Brian Hoole

A direct link to our online service for this week can be found at https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLkvRvo473R5j6jiJpMxQV4Pq44puwf76V

This is a Youtube playlist containing the different elements of worship planned for this Sunday.

READ

Deut 6:4-9

Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one. Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength. These commandments that I give you today are to be on your hearts. Impress them on your children. Talk about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up. Tie them as symbols on your hands and bind them on your foreheads. Write them on the doorframes of your houses and on your gates.

Matthew 22:34-40

Hearing that Jesus had silenced the Sadducees, the Pharisees got together. One of them, an expert in the law, tested him with this question: “Teacher, which is the greatest commandment in the Law?”

Jesus replied: “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’ This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbour as yourself.’ All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments.”

DISCUSS

- How has your week been?

- How have you seen God at work in your life this week?

- Read the passages again.

- Why do you think Jesus said these are the greatest commandments??

- Which do you think is the hardest; to love God; to love yourself; or to love your neighbour?

- What do the passages tell us about our relationship with God?

- What is challenging in this passage?

- Is there anything else the passage is saying to me?

- What am I going to do about it?

- Who am I going to share it with?

- Be prepared to share back next week.

PRAY

Let us pray that our love of God

may become real and tangible

in our love of our neighbour.

(pause)

God, you display your almighty power

in loving us without regret.

In the human heart of Jesus your Son

you have shown us how far love can go.

Give us a love that is forgiving,

generous and gentle like his,

that we may recognize and welcome him

in our brothers and sisters.

And may our hearts reach out first

to the poorest and the least lovable,

with the gratuitous love you have given us

in Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

—from [Liturgies Alive, Models of Celebration.](http://www.bibleclaret.org/liturgy/CycleA/)

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27 June - God's Commandments - YHWH - God's Name

27 June, 2021 Jesse Caulfield

READ  

Exodus 3:13-15 The Divine Name Revealed

13 But Moses said to God, “If I come to the Israelites and say to them, ‘The God of your ancestors has sent me to you,’ and they ask me, ‘What is his name?’ what shall I say to them?” 14 God said to Moses, “I am who I am.”[a] He said further, “Thus you shall say to the Israelites, ‘I am has sent me to you.’” 15 God also said to Moses, “Thus you shall say to the Israelites, ‘The Lord,[b] the God of your ancestors, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob, has sent me to you’:

This is my name forever,

and this my title for all generations.

Ex 20:1-7

1Then God spoke all these words:

2 I am the Lord your God, who brought you out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of slavery; 3 you shall have no other gods before[a] me.

4 You shall not make for yourself an idol, whether in the form of anything that is in heaven above, or that is on the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth. 5 You shall not bow down to them or worship them; for I the Lord your God am a jealous God, punishing children for the iniquity of parents, to the third and the fourth generation of those who reject me, 6 but showing steadfast love to the thousandth generation[b] of those who love me and keep my commandments.

7 You shall not make wrongful use of the name of the Lord your God, for the Lord will not acquit anyone who misuses his name.

Matt 6:9 9 “Pray then in this way: Our Father in heaven, hallowed be your name.

DISCUSS

- How has your week been?

- How have you seen God at work in your life this week?

- Read the passages again.

- Have you ever deliberately misused something?

- What’s in a name 

- How do we revere God’s name in every aspect of our lives?

- What do the passages tell us about God?

- What do the passages tell us about people?

- What do the passages tell us about our relationship with God?

- What is challenging in this passage?

- Is there anything else the passage is saying to me?

- What am I going to do about it?

- Who am I going to share it with?

- Be prepared to share back next week.

PRAY 

Using the words of Psalm 99 (v.1-6, 9)

The Lord is king; let the people's tremble!

He sits enthroned upon the cherubim; let the earth quake!

The Lord is great in Zion;

he is exalted over all the peoples.

Let them praise your great and awesome name.

Holy is he!

Mighty King, lover of justice,

you have established equity;

you have executed justice

and righteousness in Jacob.

Extol the Lord our God;

worship at his footstool.

Holy is he!

Extol the Lord our God,

and worship at his holy mountain;

for the Lord our God is holy.

Amen

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20 June - God's Commandments - One God

20 June, 2021 Rev Brian Hoole

READ  

Exodus 20:4-6;

You shall not make for yourself an idol, whether in the form of anything that is in heaven above, or that is on the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth. You shall not bow down to them or worship them; for I the Lord your God am a jealous God, punishing children for the iniquity of parents, to the third and the fourth generation of those who reject me, but showing steadfast love to the thousandth generation of those who love me and keep my commandments.

2 Kings 22:11, 13,

When the king heard the words of the book of the law, he tore his clothes saying, “Go, inquire of the Lord for me, for the people, and for all Judah, concerning the words of this book that has been found; for great is the wrath of the Lord that is kindled against us, because our ancestors did not obey the words of this book, to do according to all that is written concerning us.”

2 Kings 23:1-6

Then the king directed that all the elders of Judah and Jerusalem should be gathered to him. The king went up to the house of the Lord, and with him went all the people of Judah, all the inhabitants of Jerusalem, the priests, the prophets, and all the people, both small and great; he read in their hearing all the words of the book of the covenant that had been found in the house of the Lord. The king stood by the pillar and made a covenant before the Lord, to follow the Lord, keeping his commandments, his decrees, and his statutes, with all his heart and all his soul, to perform the words of this covenant that were written in this book. All the people joined in the covenant.

The king commanded the high priest Hilkiah, the priests of the second order, and the guardians of the threshold, to bring out of the temple of the Lord all the vessels made for Baal, for Asherah, and for all the host of heaven; he burned them outside Jerusalem in the fields of the Kidron, and carried their ashes to Bethel. He deposed the idolatrous priests whom the kings of Judah had ordained to make offerings in the high places at the cities of Judah and around Jerusalem; those also who made offerings to Baal, to the sun, the moon, the constellations, and all the host of the heavens. He brought out the image of Asherah from the house of the Lord, outside Jerusalem, to the Wadi Kidron, burned it at the Wadi Kidron, beat it to dust and threw the dust of it upon the graves of the common people

DISCUSS

- How has your week been?

- How have you seen God at work in your life this week?

- Read the passages again.

- What do the passages tell us about God?

- What do the passages tell us about people?

- What do the passages tell us about our relationship with God?

- What is challenging in this passage?

- Is there anything else the passage is saying to me?

- What am I going to do about it?

- Who am I going to share it with?

- Be prepared to share back next week.

PRAY 

God the Father, God beyond us, we adore you. You are the depth of all that is. You are the ground of our being. We can never grasp you, yet you grasp us. The universe speaks of you, and your love comes to us through Jesus. God the Son, God beside us, we adore you. You are the perfection of humanity. You have shown us what human life should be like. In you we see divine love and human greatness combined. God the Spirit, God around us, we adore you. You draw us to Jesus and the Father. You are the power within us. You give us abundant life and can make us the people we are meant to be. Father, Son, and Holy Spirit: God, beyond, beside, and around us; we adore you. Amen.

from Uniting in Worship 2 (UCA Publications)

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13th June - God's Commandments - God First

13 June, 2021 Rev Brian Hoole

READ  

Exodus 20:2-3;

I am the Lord your God, who brought you out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of slavery; you shall have no other gods before me.

Acts 17:16-34 Paul in Athens

While Paul was waiting for them in Athens, he was deeply distressed to see that the city was full of idols. So, he argued in the synagogue with the Jews and the devout persons, and also in the marketplace every day with those who happened to be there. Also, some Epicurean and Stoic philosophers debated with him. Some said, “What does this babbler want to say?” Others said, “He seems to be a proclaimer of foreign divinities.” (This was because he was telling the good news about Jesus and the resurrection.) So, they took him and brought him to the Areopagus and asked him, “May we know what this new teaching is that you are presenting? It sounds rather strange to us, so we would like to know what it means.” Now all the Athenians and the foreigners living there would spend their time in nothing but telling or hearing something new.

Then Paul stood in front of the Areopagus and said, “Athenians, I see how extremely religious you are in every way. For as I went through the city and looked carefully at the objects of your worship, I found among them an altar with the inscription, ‘To an unknown god.’ What therefore you worship as unknown, this I proclaim to you. The God who made the world and everything in it, he who is Lord of heaven and earth, does not live-in shrines made by human hands, nor is he served by human hands, as though he needed anything, since he himself gives to all mortal's life and breath and all things. From one ancestor he made all nations to inhabit the whole earth, and he allotted the times of their existence and the boundaries of the places where they would live, so that they would search for God and perhaps grope for him and find him—though indeed he is not far from each one of us. For ‘In him we live and move and have our being’; as even some of your own poets have said, ‘For we too are his offspring.’

Since we are God’s offspring, we ought not to think that the deity is like gold, or silver, or stone, an image formed by the art and imagination of mortals. While God has overlooked the times of human ignorance, now he commands all people everywhere to repent, because he has fixed a day on which he will have the world judged in righteousness by a man whom he has appointed, and of this he has given assurance to all by raising him from the dead.”

When they heard of the resurrection of the dead, some scoffed; but others said, “We will hear you again about this.” At that point Paul left them. But some of them joined him and became believers, including Dionysius the Areopagite and a woman named Damaris, and others with them.

DISCUSS

- How has your week been?

- How have you seen God at work in your life this week?

- Read the passages again.

- What do the passages tell us about God?

- What do the passages tell us about people?

- What do the passages tell us about our relationship with God?

- What is challenging in this passage?

- Is there anything else the passage is saying to me?

- What am I going to do about it?

- Who am I going to share it with?

- Be prepared to share back next week.

PRAY 

God the Father, God beyond us, we adore you.You are the depth of all that is.You are the ground of our being.We can never grasp you, yet you grasp us.The universe speaks of you,and your love comes to us through Jesus.God the Son, God beside us, we adore you.You are the perfection of humanity.You have shown us what human life should be like.In you we see divine love and human greatness combined.God the Spirit, God around us, we adore you.You draw us to Jesus and the Father.You are the power within us.You give us abundant lifeand can make us the people we are meant to be.Father, Son, and Holy Spirit:God, beyond, besides, and around us;we adore you. Amen.

from Uniting in Worship 2 (UCA Publications)

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6 June - Girls' lives transformed, God's world enriched.

6 June, 2021 Rev Brian Hoole

READ

Romans 12:1-2

I appeal to you therefore, brothers and sisters, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and acceptable to God, which is your spiritual worship. Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your minds, so that you may discern what is the will of God—what is good and acceptable and perfect.

Girls Brigade Vision

GIRLS’ LIVES TRANSFORMED; GOD’S WORLD ENRICHED

[Diagram

Description automatically generated]

The crest is a registered trademark of Girls' Brigade England & Wales. However, all Girls' Brigade companies around the world have the right to use it.

In the centre is a Cross, the symbol of Christ and his Church. Below the cross is a Lamp, which represents the light of the Girls' Brigade shining upon the World. Above it is a Crown, of Christ as King. Behind it all, is a Torch, the flame of Christ's living spirit.

The badge incorporates symbols from the three original organizations and is, therefore, in itself a symbol of union, as well as faith and allegiance to the Lord Jesus Christ.

The Girls Brigade which formed in Ireland in 1893, brought in the Cross. The Girls' Guildry which formed in 1900 in Scotland, brought in the Lamp. Lastly, the Girls' Life Brigade, which formed in 1902 in England, brought in the Crown. They amalgamated in 1965. A competition was held to design the crest for the amalgamated organisation, it was won by Constance Fasham.

DISCUSS

- How has your week been?

- How have you seen God at work in your life this week?

- Read the passage again.

- How do you relate the reading and the Girls brigade vision?

- The crest helps us understand what it is that transforms lives. What are the parts of crest?

- How do they relate to transformed lives?

- What does this passage tell us about God?

- What does this passage tell us about people?

- What is challenging in this passage?

- Is there anything else the passage is saying to me?

- What am I going to do about it?

- Who am I going to share it with?

- Be prepared to share back next week.

PRAY

Oh God who prepared the disciples for the coming of the Holy Spirit. Make our hearts and minds ready, we beseech you, for the indwelling presence of your son Christ our Lord. Grant that the Officers and members of the Girls Brigade may be True and just in all their dealings, modest and Gentle in all their Word's and always loving and kind. Bless all others who Work for the extension of Christ kingdom in the lives of young people, so that finally we may all come to the blessed home through Christ our Lord. Amen

A prayer from the Girl’s Brigade in Zambia

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30th May - We Need Each Other

30 May, 2021 Rev Brian Hoole

READ  

1 Corinthians 12:12-27

For just as the body is one and has many members, and all the members of the body, though many, are one body, so it is with Christ. For in the one Spirit, we were all baptized into one body—Jews or Greeks, slaves or free—and we were all made to drink of one Spirit.

Indeed, the body does not consist of one member but of many. If the foot would say, “Because I am not a hand, I do not belong to the body,” that would not make it any less a part of the body. And if the ear would say, “Because I am not an eye, I do not belong to the body,” that would not make it any less a part of the body. If the whole body were an eye, where would the hearing be? If the whole body were hearing, where would the sense of smell be? But as it is, God arranged the members in the body, each one of them, as he chose. If all were a single member, where would the body be? As it is, there are many members, yet one body. The eye cannot say to the hand, “I have no need of you,” nor again the head to the feet, “I have no need of you.” On the contrary, the members of the body that seem to be weaker are indispensable, and those members of the body that we think less honourable we clothe with greater honour, and our less respectable members are treated with greater respect; whereas our more respectable members do not need this. But God has so arranged the body, giving the greater honour to the inferior member, that there may be no dissension within the body, but the members may have the same care for one another. If one member suffers, all suffer together with it; if one member is honoured, all rejoice together with it.

Now you are the body of Christ and individually members of it.

DISCUSS

- How has your week been?

- How have you seen God at work in your life this week?

- Read the passage again.

- What do you understand by the phrase ‘Christ is like a single body’?

- If you were a body part, what part would it be?

- What does this passage tell us about God?

- What does this passage tell us about the body of Christ?

- What does this passage tell us about people?

- What is challenging in this passage?

- Is there anything else the passage is saying to me?

- What am I going to do about it?

- Who am I going to share it with?

- Be prepared to share back next week.

PRAY 

Dear Father, great, good and generous giver,

Thank you for making me part of the body of Christ, his church.

Thank you that there are no unimportant parts to the body.

Thank you that all of us are interconnected and interdependent.

We have a variety of gifts from you, but all have the same spirit.

We have varieties of service, but all have the same Lord, Jesus Christ.

We have various ways of working, but it is you, O God, who inspires all of it. Your spirit apportions your gifts as he wishes.

Thank you for every sign of your power and goodness.

And thank you for every graciousness shown to me personally.

In the name of Jesus, the head of the body, I pray.

Amen.

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23 May - The Day of Pentecost

23 May, 2021 Rev Brian Hoole

READ

Acts 2: 1-4

When the day of Pentecost had come, they were all together in one place. And suddenly from heaven there came a sound like the rush of a violent wind, and it filled the entire house where they were sitting. Divided tongues, as of fire, appeared among them, and a tongue rested on each of them. All of them were filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in other languages, as the Spirit gave them ability.

DISCUSS

1. How has your week been?

2. How have you seen God at work in your life this week?

3. Read the passage again.

4. What does this passage tell us about God?

5. What does this passage tell us about the Holy Spirit?

6. What does this passage tell us about people?

7. What is challenging in this passage?

8. Is there anything else the passage is saying to me?

9. What am I going to do about it.

10. Who am I going to share it with

11. Be prepared to share back next week.

PRAY

For the Spirit of Peace

that calms our mind and stills our life,

we give you thanks.

For the Spirit of Love

that touches hearts and reaches out,

we give you thanks.

For the Spirit of Joy

that lifts our soul and gives us faith

we give you thanks.

For the Spirit of Power,

that gift of grace for this your church,

we give you thanks.

Lord God we give you thanks and praise

for the gift of your Spirit.

Amen

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