May 1, 2022 - Home Worship Service

05/01/2022

Morning Prayer:  O my God, teach my heart where and how to seek You, and where and how to find You. Though I have never seen You, You are my God and Master of my life. You have made me and remade me, and You have bestowed on me all the good things I possess, but You are still the unknown, for I have not yet reached that for which I was fully made. Teach me to seek You, for I cannot seek unless You teach me or find You unless You reveal Yourself to me. Let me seek You in my desiring, let me desire You in my seeking. Let me find You in my loving, and let me love You in my finding.  A prayer from St. Anselm of Canterbury, 1033-1109 CE

Hymn #707 Hymn of Promise

  1. In the bulb there is a flower; in the seed, an apple tree;

In cocoons, a hidden promise: butterflies will soon be free!

In the cold and snow of winter there’s a spring that waits to be,

Unrevealed until its season, something God alone can see.

  1. There’s a song in every silence, seeking word and melody;

There’s a dawn in every darkness, bringing hope to you and me.

From the past will come the future; what it holds, a mystery,

Unrevealed until its season, something God alone can see.

  1. In our end is our beginning; in our time, infinity;

In our doubt there is believing; in our life, eternity,

In our death, a resurrection; at the last, a victory,

Unrevealed until its season, something God alone can see.

Psalm 30

Leader: I will extol You, O LORD, for You have drawn me up,

and did not let my foes rejoice over me.

O LORD my God, I cried to You for help, and You have healed me.

O LORD, You brought up my soul from Sheol,

restored me to life from among those gone down to the Pit.

People: Sing praises to the LORD, O you His faithful ones,

and give thanks to His holy name.

For His anger is but for a moment; His favor is for a lifetime.

Weeping may linger for the night, but joy comes with the morning.

Leader: As for me, I said in my prosperity, "I shall never be moved."

By Your favor, O LORD, You had established me as a strong mountain;

You hid your face; I was dismayed.

To You, O LORD, I cried, and to the LORD I made supplication:

People: "What profit is there in my death, if I go down to the Pit?

Will the dust praise You? Will it tell of Your faithfulness?

Hear, O LORD, and be gracious to me! O LORD, be my helper!"

You have turned my mourning into dancing;

You have taken off my sackcloth and clothed me with joy,

so that my soul may praise You and not be silent.

O LORD my God, I will give thanks to You forever.

Children’s message:  Love In Any Language

The third time he (Jesus) said to him, "Simon son of John, do you love Me?" Peter was hurt because Jesus asked him the third time, "Do you love Me?" He said, "Lord, You know all things; You know that I love You." Jesus said, "Feed my sheep. John 21:17 (NIV)

A few years ago, there was a song that became very popular. The name of the song was "Love in Any Language." Can you say, "I love you" in any different languages? This morning we can learn at least three different ways to say, "I love you."

In German, you would say, "Ich liebe dich!" Can you say that?

In Spanish, you would say, "¡Te amo!" That is pretty easy -- try it.

You know, it is pretty easy to say, "I love you," but it is sometimes a lot harder to show it by our actions. That is what our Bible story is about today.

After Jesus was raised from the dead, He appeared to His disciples several times. On the third time that Jesus appeared to His disciples, He was with them on the shore by the Sea of Galilee. He turned to Peter and said, "Peter, do you love Me?"

Peter answered, "Yes, Lord, You know that I love You."

Then, Jesus said to Peter, "Feed My lambs."

Jesus asked Peter again, "Do you love Me?"

Again, Peter answered, "Yes Lord, I love You."

Jesus said to him, "Take care of My sheep."

A third time Jesus asked Peter, "Do you love Me?"

Now Peter was very sad that Jesus asked him this question again, but he answered Jesus again, "Lord, You know all things, You know that I love You."

Jesus said, "Feed My sheep."

Why did Jesus ask Peter the same question three times? I think He wanted Peter to understand -- and He wanted you and me to understand -- that it isn't enough just to say, "I love You." We must show our love for Jesus by showing our love for one another and caring for one another.

Do you love Jesus?

Then feed and take care of His sheep! Now, that is love that can be understood in any language.

Dear Jesus, help us to show our love for You by loving and caring for one another. Amen. (sermons4kids.com)

Prayers of Intercession:  Lord we cry to You for help.  You answer in words, in the deeds and acts of kindness, in the people around us.  Hear the cries of our hearts for those we hold dear.  We now pray as You have taught us: Our Father, who art in heaven, hallowed be Thy name. Thy kingdom come, Thy will be done, on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread, and forgive us our sins, as we forgive those who sin against us. Lead us not into temptation but deliver us from evil.  For Thine is the kingdom and the power and the glory forever.  Amen. 

Offering spotlight:  Today there is an offering envelope in the bulletin for Native American Ministries. The funds allow The United Methodist Church to collaborate with existing Native American ministries and create programs on behalf of Native Americans. Money collected also supports seminary scholarships for United Methodist Native Americans.  There are more than 20,000 Native Americans within the United Methodist Church.        

Offertory prayer: Redeeming God, we live in a world that is far too ready to say that You can’t be found, ready to choose punishment over mercy, judgment over compassion. Our world is too eager to put energy into exclusion rather than working to be inclusive of all Your children. We confess to You that, like Saul, we have been blind, even in our sightedness, to what You are doing in the world. We need our eyes to be truly opened, Lord, to who You really are. Let our blindness fall away and let us see the good that we can do—through our prayers, presence, gifts, service and our witness—to help usher in Your kingdom here and now. May the gifts we give this morning be just the beginning of our availability to be Your tools for bringing about the world You desire. We pray it in the name of the risen Christ. Amen. (Discipleship Ministries)

Hymn of Preparation #453 More Love to Thee

  1. More love to Thee, O Christ, more love to Thee!
    Hear Thou the prayer I make on bended knee.
    This is my earnest plea: More love, O Christ, to thee;
    more love to Thee, more love to Thee!
  2. Once earthly joy I craved, sought peace and rest;
    now Thee alone I seek, give what is best.
    This all my prayer shall be: More love, O Christ, to Thee;
    more love to Thee, more love to Thee!
  3. Let sorrow do its work, come grief and pain;
    sweet are Thy messengers, sweet their refrain,
    when they can sing with me: More love, O Christ, to Thee;
    more love to Thee, more love to Thee!
  4. Then shall my latest breath whisper Thy praise;
    this be the parting cry my heart shall raise;
    this still its prayer shall be: More love, O Christ, to Thee;
    more love to Thee, more love to Thee!

John 21:1-19

After these things Jesus showed Himself again to the disciples by the Sea of Tiberias; and He showed Himself in this way. Gathered there together were Simon Peter, Thomas called the Twin, Nathanael of Cana in Galilee, the sons of Zebedee, and two others of His disciples. Simon Peter said to them, ‘I am going fishing.’ They said to him, ‘We will go with you.’ They went out and got into the boat, but that night they caught nothing.

Just after daybreak, Jesus stood on the beach; but the disciples did not know that it was Jesus. Jesus said to them, ‘Children, you have no fish, have you?’ They answered Him, ‘No.’ He said to them, ‘Cast the net to the right side of the boat, and you will find some.’ So they cast it, and now they were not able to haul it in because there were so many fish. That disciple whom Jesus loved said to Peter, ‘It is the Lord!’ When Simon Peter heard that it was the Lord, he put on some clothes, for he was naked, and jumped into the lake. But the other disciples came in the boat, dragging the net full of fish, for they were not far from the land, only about a hundred yards off.

When they had gone ashore, they saw a charcoal fire there, with fish on it, and bread. Jesus said to them, ‘Bring some of the fish that you have just caught.’ So Simon Peter went aboard and hauled the net ashore, full of large fish, a hundred and fifty-three of them; and though there were so many, the net was not torn. Jesus said to them, ‘Come and have breakfast.’ Now none of the disciples dared to ask Him, ‘Who are You?’ because they knew it was the Lord. Jesus came and took the bread and gave it to them, and did the same with the fish. This was now the third time that Jesus appeared to the disciples after He was raised from the dead.

When they had finished breakfast, Jesus said to Simon Peter, ‘Simon son of John, do you love Me more than these?’ He said to Him, ‘Yes, Lord; You know that I love You.’ Jesus said to him, ‘Feed My lambs.’ A second time He said to him, ‘Simon son of John, do you love Me?’ He said to Him, ‘Yes, Lord; You know that I love You.’ Jesus said to him, ‘Tend My sheep.’ He said to him the third time, ‘Simon son of John, do you love Me?’ Peter felt hurt because He said to him the third time, ‘Do you love Me?’ And he said to Him, ‘Lord, You know everything; You know that I love You.’ Jesus said to him, ‘Feed My sheep. Very truly, I tell you, when you were younger, you used to fasten your own belt and to go wherever you wished. But when you grow old, you will stretch out your hands, and someone else will fasten a belt around you and take you where you do not wish to go.’ (He said this to indicate the kind of death by which he would glorify God.) After this He said to him, ‘Follow Me.’

Message – Being Known by Our Actions                     Pastor Becky Cuddeback

I want you to picture in your mind, the person you know most intimately – it could be your spouse, your sibling, significant other, best friend, your child or your grandmother – but it has to be someone you really know. Do you have them in your mind; can you picture them? When you envision them, what are they doing? What makes the most sense envisioning them doing? Is it their favorite hobby, or an everyday activity? Can you anticipate their next move; do you know what they will say – maybe you can finish their sentence?

Now, if you encountered them in real life and they had their back turned to you, would you still know it was them? How far away can you get before you couldn’t recognize them? What exactly makes them recognizable? Is it their build, or their movements, or their scent? How do you really know it’s them? You can answer these questions because you have been or are in a relationship with them. You have noticed everything about them because of the time you have spent intertwined in their life. You may have even picked up their mannerisms, style of speech, their gait – you have begun to mirror some aspect of their behavior and ways of being. You only get there because of time.

John, in his gospel, gives us glimpses of time he and the other disciples spent with Jesus. This account is his last telling – he does go on to say that there are many, many other exchanges and encounters – too numerous to write, but for John this is his last remembrance of time spent. And John knows it’s Jesus before the others realize it because of their spent time. This probably isn’t the first breakfast Jesus has made for them, they spent three years on foot together covering much of the area from Galilee to Jerusalem, from Samaria to Bethany – you can learn a great deal about a person living and traveling together and John knows Jesus instantly. Whether it is the sound of Jesus’s voice or just Jesus’s stature on the beach – John knows it is the Lord without hesitation.

You know the next question I am going to ask, right? Will you recognize Jesus when you see Him? There is a big difference between knowing of Jesus and knowing Jesus. The scriptures are full of His stories – the feedings, the healings, the teachings – but the only way we know Jesus is by knowing His heart. Over and over Jesus reveals His heart to us; it is the only way we are going to know Him. Jesus’ heart is always with the oppressed, the marginalized, those seeking justice, those deemed by the religious folks as unclean or unworthy – the ones who don’t quite measure up. In His ministry, Jesus removed barriers so people could be included in community. Think of the lepers who were removed from worship and their families; then once healed, they could return. How about the compassion He showed toward the children and their inclusion. We can see over and over how being with people different than Himself (and who among us could begin to think we are peers with Jesus) led to deeper revelation of God’s love offered and poured out on our behalf.

When Jesus questions Peter about does he love Jesus – the response to love is always in the care of another. Jesus is found and made known in our care of another. We aren’t going to experience Jesus’s heart by reading and hoping. We are going to experience and then know Jesus when we seek out those Jesus has asked us to care for. All our knowing can only come in relationship with those around us, those unlike ourselves, so that we too may see the length and depth of God’s love for all of creation. If we continue to only care for those like us, we can begin to think things are ok and the problems of others aren’t our problem. But Beloved, they very much are our problems: without regard to another's belief, when one part of the body is broken, the entirety is broken.

Let us pray: God of us all, stir us again to desire to know Jesus, to walk with and for Jesus. Remove from us anything that keeps us distant from truly living into the compassion of Jesus. Amen.

Closing Hymn #344 Lord, You Have Come to the Lakeshore

  1. Lord, You have come to the lakeshore looking neither for wealthy nor wise ones;

You only asked me to follow humbly.

Refrain:

O Lord, with Your eyes You have searched me, and while smiling have spoken my name;

Now my boat’s left on the lakeshore behind me; by Your side I will seek other seas.

  1. You know so well my possessions; my boat carries no gold and no weapons;

You will find there my nets and labor.

Refrain:

  1. You need my hands, full of caring through my labors to give others rest,

And constant love that keeps on loving.

Refrain:

  1. You, who have fished other oceans, ever longed for by souls who are waiting,

My loving friend, as thus You call me.

Refrain:

Go into your week with the blessings of The Father, The Son, The Holy Spirit.

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