October 24, 2021 - Home Worship Service

October 24, 2021

Call to worship: Psalm 34:1-8, (19-22)

L: I will bless the LORD at all times; His praise shall continually be in my mouth.

My soul makes its boast in the LORD; let the humble hear and be glad.

P: O magnify the LORD with me, and let us exalt His name together.

I sought the LORD, and He answered me, and delivered me from all my fears.

L: Look to Him, and be radiant; so your faces shall never be ashamed.

This poor soul cried, and was heard by the LORD, and was saved from every trouble.

P: The angel of the LORD encamps around those who fear Him, and delivers them.

O taste and see that the LORD is good; happy are those who take refuge in Him.

L: Many are the afflictions of the righteous, but the LORD rescues them from them all.

He keeps all their bones; not one of them will be broken.

P: Evil brings death to the wicked, and those who hate the righteous will be condemned.

The LORD redeems the life of His servants; none of those who take refuge in Him will be condemned.

Hymn #348 Softly and Tenderly Jesus Is Calling

1    Softly and tenderly Jesus is calling, calling for you and for me;

      See, on the portals He’s waiting and watching, watching for you and for me. 

Chorus:  Come home, (come home), come home, (come home); you who are weary, come home;

Earnestly, tenderly, Jesus is calling, calling, O sinner, come home! 

2    Why should we tarry when Jesus is pleading, pleading for you and for me?

      Why should we linger and heed not His mercies, mercies for you and for me?

3    Time is now fleeting, the moments are passing, passing from you and from me;

      Shadows are gathering, deathbeds are coming, coming for you and for me.

4    O for the wonderful love He has promised, promised for you and for me!

      Though we have sinned, He has mercy and pardon, pardon for you and for me. 

Morning prayer

Holy God, we greet You this morning, ready to hear Your Word and be refreshed and restored in Your Spirit. Accept our songs of praise and thanksgiving, nourish us in our fellowship and fortify our hearts with Your love. In Jesus’ name. Amen.

Children’s message: Scripture: Psalm 126:1-3

When the Lord restored the fortunes of Zion, we were like those who dream.

Then our mouth was filled with laughter, and our tongue with shouts of joy; then it was said among the nations, “The Lord has done great things for them.”

The Lord has done great things for us, and we rejoiced.

Do you daydream, just let your mind wander off? What do you daydream about? Just to give you some comfort, in the event you are ashamed of daydreaming, know that on the average, most people spend about 47% of their waking hours participating in some level of daydreaming. It helps us conquer boredom, helps us see a more bright future and can assist us in problem solving. Now to be fair, there are times we really shouldn’t be daydreaming, like when our teacher is talking to us or we are doing something that requires all our attention, like driving or using kitchen knives, you know, high risk activities. But, for the most part, they help us visualize how we will respond to the world.

The Israelites are dreaming of what their future with God will hold after they come back from their captivity. And they are dreaming of how the world will be right again. I think we can relate to them, especially given our current situation with COVID. Do you know why they can dream so vividly and with expectation? Because they know God to be faithful and they will not give up on God’s ability to restore all creation to God’s goodness. Will it happen all at once, probably not until Jesus comes back, but we will begin to see things that are recognizable to us and we can have faith in the same way because God is faithful.

Let us pray: Gracious God, fill us with Your dreams, dreams of peace and dreams of righteousness, so we too can be expecting Your goodness to fall upon us and the entire world. In Jesus’ name. Amen.

Prayers of Intercession:  What grace You offer us, Lord Jesus.  Thank You for hearing our prayers and our anxious thoughts.  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 trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass 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:  Youth Group and youth ministries.  Your tithes and offerings enable the children of this church to learn, to study, to forge relationships and have great fun in a safe and loving environment with adults who love them. 

Offertory prayer:  Extravagantly Generous God, there is nothing we have, there is nothing we require, there is nothing we long for that does not pale when placed beside the relationship You’ve offered to us. As we bring our gifts to You, remind us of the covenant You put before Israel: “If they will be My people I will be their God.” Receive what we give in gratitude for Your invitation, and help us be Your people, reflected in our love for You and for all Your children. We pray this in the name of Jesus, the Christ, who gave all there was to give for us. Amen. (Discipleship Ministries)

Preparation Hymn: #351 Pass Me Not, O Gentle Savior

1    Pass me not, O gentle Savior, hear my humble cry;  

      While on others Thou art calling, do not pass me by.

Refrain:  Savior, Savior, hear my humble cry, while on others Thou art calling, do not pass me by.

2    Let me at Thy throne of mercy find a sweet relief,  

Kneeling there in deep contrition; help my unbelief.

3    Trusting only in Thy merit, would I seek Thy face;

Heal my wounded, broken spirit, save me by Thy grace. 

4    Thou the spring of all my comfort, more than life to me,

Whom have I on earth beside Thee?  Whom in heaven by Thee? 

Message scripture: Mark 10:46-52

They came to Jericho. As He and His disciples and a large crowd were leaving Jericho, Bartimaeus son of Timaeus, a blind beggar, was sitting by the roadside. When he heard that it was Jesus of Nazareth, he began to shout out and say, “Jesus, Son of David, have mercy on me!” Many sternly ordered him to be quiet, but he cried out even more loudly, “Son of David, have mercy on me!” 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.” So throwing off his cloak, he sprang up and came to Jesus. 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.” Jesus said to him, “Go; your faith has made you well.” Immediately he regained his sight and followed Him on the way.

Message:  Called to See

Do you remember the day you decided to follow Jesus? The day you either said in your head, or your heart, or maybe out loud to a group gathered around you, I am following Jesus! We all have a call story, some of us are slower than others to respond to our call or try to half commit or try to leverage out, but we all have one. Why do you do what you do as a profession or as a passion? Likely, you weighed out your gifts, graces, interests and opportunities and came to a decision. Please don’t think that a call is only to pastoral ministry. Whatever you do in service to God and humanity is a call.

What does a call have to do with a blind beggar from Jericho? Everything, honestly, because this story has to be more than just a healing, right? I mean, it is still a good story if it were only about Bartimaeus getting to see; it’s a happy ending and we love happy endings to stories.

Let’s break it down a bit and figure out what we can say we know from this story. Bartimaeus is part of a family. He is Timaeus’ son; so he hasn’t been orphaned or abandoned, people know to whom he belongs and he is a Jew, hence the Bar in his name. This is why he can call Jesus, Son of David – this wasn’t supernatural knowledge, but a kinship. He is calling to Jesus as one of the nation of Israel, to which both are connected. And Bartimaeus is relying on Jesus to acknowledge him as part of the covenant of care between brothers – given by the prophets – caring for the least of these, the widow, the orphan, the sick, the lame… the Old Testament gives us all the commandments for who and whom we are to show care, how we are to treat others – you can find these all in Deuteronomy and some more in Isaiah and the other prophets. If you are able, you are to offer aid. We could make a good argument against the crowd based on Old Testament law and their response to Bartimaeus.

We know that Bartimaeus was not born blind, he asks to see again, to be restored of his sight. He has a before and after in regard to his sight. He remembers a time when he could see and now cannot. He is mourning the loss of his sight and what that means for him. I think we can relate. Our physical sight has stages, I remember a time before wearing glasses, bifocals and trifocals – a time when I could wear contact lenses and a time after. A time when I could read while wearing my glasses and now a time when I must take them off to read, and then return them to my face to look across the table clearly.

Bartimaeus leaves his cloak behind. Whatever he is to receive from Jesus will change the trajectory of his life. He will not be the same as he was before; his expectation is met with reality of who he is to become. Do you remember the calling of the early disciples? Mark 1:16-20, they left behind their nets and their previous lives to begin lives of discipleship of Jesus. This is the same call language for Bartimaeus and the crowd rejoices in it. Telling him, take heart – He is calling you. Wow, do we offer that affirmation to others when they are called? How do we voice that as a congregation, a fellowship of believers? Have we been quick to recognize God working in the lives of each other and validated people’s callings? What could it look like if we did? And how could we better support one another and truly be a chorus of hallelujah?

Bartimaeus’ healing is a calling into discipleship, Jesus recognized him, as one who belonged to God, saw what was needed and gave it and Bartimaeus’ response was to follow. This is good news for us, Jesus calls each of us into this discipleship too and like Bartimaeus – He knows our name, knows our condition and calls us.

Let us pray:

Almighty God, thank You for the calling You make to us through Jesus. You have been preparing us all along to be at this moment, the moment when we fully commit to the calling You have placed on each of us, to be fully authentic in our need for You and our desire to follow You. Give us the strength to leave behind what will hold us back from full discipleship, so that Your Kingdom here, becomes our desire. In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen.


Closing Hymn Go Now in Peace

Go now in peace.  Never be afraid. God will go with you each hour of ev’ry day.

Go now in faith, steadfast strong and true.  Know He will guide you in all you do.

Go now in love and show you believe.  Reach out to others so all the world can see.

God will be there watching from above.

Go now in peace, in faith, and in love. 

Benediction:  Go into this week with the blessings of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit.




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