Hilary Plowright
Slideshow image

Home Church 8th Sunday after Pentecost July 26, 2020

Guest Presider: Mona Smart

We acknowledge these lands upon which we worship are the traditional, ancestral, and unceded territory of the Snuneymuxw First Nation.

Preparing the Space Around Us

Whoever you are and wherever you are on life’s journey, you are welcome here! Welcome if you are gathering on zoom or if you are worshipping at home with the bulletin. We are one community and all part of the body of Christ. I invite you to prepare the space around you

so that for the next hour you can be fully in this worship experience, not to keep out the realities of the world, rather to focus us in the midst of it all on God. If you need to go and get something or shift something around you, feel free.

Preparing the Space within Us

Let us prepare now the space within us for a time of worship. I invite

you to sit quietly, perhaps with feet on the floor, taking a couple of deep breaths and bring yourself into this moment. Open yourself to the presence of God who is with us and within us . . . as you intentionally open yourself to God, open yourself also to what you need from this time of worship.

One:    The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, the love of God,

            and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit be with you all.

All:      And also with you    

Opening Prayer                                                 

Our God, as a gentle rain soaks the earth,
may your peace and love fall upon us, bringing wisdom and life.

Immerse us in your wisdom and steadfastness.

Quiet all that makes us anxious.

Help us to refresh our hearts and our mind
to carry your Word and Wisdom to others. Amen

                                           Adapted from UCC: Celebrate God’s Presence: A Book of Services

Prayer of Confession                                           

Merciful God,
Jesus taught us not to be anxious
  about our lives or about tomorrow.
We confess we have not fully lived this,
  we have not trusted and loved you
  with our whole heart and mind and strength.
Help us to amend what we are,
  and direct what we shall be:
  that we may delight in your will
  and learn the wisdom of your ways. Amen

                                           Adapted from UCC: Celebrate God’s Presence: A Book of Services

Silent Prayer of Confession

Assurance of Grace

We take comfort in the assurance
  that even those things that are hidden from our memory,
  and buried too deep for our words,
  are not beyond God’s forgiving love.

God you know us completely,
  bestow on us your Wisdom, pardon and peace. Amen

                                   Adapted from UCC: Celebrate God’s Presence: A Book of Services

Prayer for Illumination

Eternal God, open our minds and hearts
that we may hear and discern the Wisdom of your Word.

First Reading: Psalm 119:129-136             

Your decrees are wonderful; therefore my soul keeps them. The unfolding of your words gives light; it imparts understanding to the simple.  With open mouth I pant, because I long for your commandments. Turn to me and be gracious to me, as is your custom toward those who love your name. Keep my steps steady according to your promise, and never let iniquity have dominion over me. Redeem me from human oppression, that I may keep your precepts.  Make your face shine upon your servant, and teach me your statutes.  My eyes shed streams of tears because your law is not kept.

Second Reading: 1 Kings 3:5-12

At Gibeon the LORD appeared to Solomon in a dream by night; and God said, "Ask what I should give you."

And Solomon said, "You have shown great and steadfast love to your servant my father David, because he walked before you in faithfulness, in righteousness, and in uprightness of heart toward you; and you have kept for him this great and steadfast love, and have given him a son to sit on his throne today.

And now, O LORD my God, you have made your servant king in place of my father David, although I am only a little child; I do not know how to go out or come in.

And your servant is in the midst of the people whom you have chosen, a great people, so numerous they cannot be numbered or counted.

Give your servant therefore an understanding mind to govern your people, able to discern between good and evil; for who can govern this your great people?”

It pleased the Lord that Solomon had asked this.

God said to him, "Because you have asked this, and have not asked for yourself long life or riches, or for the life of your enemies, but have asked for yourself understanding to discern what is right, I now do according to your word. Indeed, I give you a wise and discerning mind; no one like you has been before you and no one like you shall arise after you.”

Gospel Reading                                                                                                

One:      God be with you.       

All:        And also with you

One:      The Good News of Jesus Christ according to Matthew

All:        Glory to you, Lord Jesus Christ.

Matthew 13:31-33, 44-52

He put before them another parable: "The kingdom of heaven is like a mustard seed that someone took and sowed in his field; it is the smallest of all the seeds, but when it has grown it is the greatest of shrubs and becomes a tree, so that the birds of the air come and make nests in its branches.“

He told them another parable: "The kingdom of heaven is like yeast that a woman took and mixed in with three measures of flour until all of it was leavened,

“The kingdom of heaven is like treasure hidden in a field, which someone found and hid; then in his joy he goes and sells all that he has and buys that field.

"Again, the kingdom of heaven is like a merchant in search of fine pearls; on finding one pearl of great value, he went and sold all that he had and bought it.

"Again, the kingdom of heaven is like a net that was thrown into the sea and caught fish of every kind; when it was full, they drew it ashore, sat down, and put the good into baskets but threw out the bad.

So it will be at the end of the age. The angels will come out and separate the evil from the righteous and throw them into the furnace of fire, where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.  "Have you understood all this?" They answered, "Yes.”

And he said to them, "Therefore every scribe who has been trained for the kingdom of heaven is like the master of a household who brings out of his treasure what is new and what is old."

One: This is the Gospel of Christ;

All:   Praise be to Jesus Christ

Reflection:  Spiritual Wisdom – Jesus and Solomon ( Reflection attached)

Seed-planting, fish-netting, bread-baking, pearl-hunting God, you shape us into living parables.

Help us to pray with your Spirit in us,
  that we may understand our experiences as healing metaphors and acquire the Wisdom to live the creative and abundant life you intend for us. Amen.

Silent Reflection 

A New Creed:

Let us affirm our faith

We are not alone, we live in God’s world.

We believe in God:

  who has created and is creating,

  who has come in Jesus,

  the Word made flesh,

  to reconcile and make new,

  who works in us and others by the Spirit.

We trust in God.

We are called to be the Church:

  to celebrate God’s presence,

  to live with respect in Creation,

  to love and serve others,

  to seek justice and resist evil,

  to proclaim Jesus, crucified and risen,

  our judge and our hope.

In life, in death, in life beyond death, God is with us.

We are not alone.
Thanks be to God.  Amen

Prayers of the People   (see attached)    

One:      God of Wisdom        

All:        Hear our Prayer                                                                                 

Lord’s Prayer

Our Father in heaven,

hallowed be your name,

your kingdom come,

your will be done,

on earth as in heaven.

Give us today our daily bread.

Forgive us our sins

as we forgive those who sin against us.

Save us from the time of trial

and deliver us from evil.

For the kingdom, the power,

and the glory are yours

now and for ever. Amen.

Minute for Mission (See attached)

Offering Prayer

Holy God, we come in gratitude for your presence and Word among us. We thank you for the gift of this community and the steady commitment to serve the needs of the congregation and the community around  us. Today we renew our commitment to this service in Christ’s name: may you guide us to where we are most needed and uniquely gifted to serve. In his name we pray, Amen.


Glory to God, whose power, working in us, can do infinitely more than we can ask or imagine. Glory to God from generation to generation, in the Church and in Christ Jesus, for ever and ever. Amen.

Departing Benediction

All: We ask the Creator’s blessing be ours on our road, on our journey, guiding us, cherishing us.

First name A-M:  The Son’s blessing be yours, wine and water, bread and stories, feeding you, challenging you.

First name N-Z:  The Spirit’s blessing be yours, wind and fire, joy and wisdom, comforting you, disturbing you.

All: May the Angel’s blessing be ours, on our house, on our living, guarding us, encouraging us. Let us walk together, a community on a journey, sustained in God’s blessing. Let us go in peace to love and serve the Lord. Thanks be to God! Alleluia!