Order of Worship
Fourth Sunday after Pentecost
June 28, 2020 10:00 a.m.
Call to Worship
Welcome! In the name of God, welcome.
God’s love stretches wide,
ready to embrace all with love.
You who are thirsty for the presence of God,
welcome. May your thirst be satisfied.
You who long for a caring touch,
welcome. May you know God’s love through the care of this community.
In the name of God, welcome to all;
let us drink deeply of God’s presence
and share this grace with one another.
Come, let us worship.
God of steadfast love,
today remember Jesus’ words:
“Anyone who welcomes you welcomes me,
and anyone who welcomes me welcomes the one who sent me.”
We pray to welcome the outcast as we would welcome you,
to do what you can to provide water to the stranger,
and to trust always that you will be there.
We pray to know that kindness is brave,
but always worthwhile,
and that where love is,
there you are. Amen.
Storytelling – “Welcome”
Message in Music
Reading of Scripture Matthew 10: 40-42
Message “Choosing a Braver Faith” Rev. Laura McLeod
Preparation for Prayer
Pastoral Prayer and Lord’s Prayer
Live as a testament to God’s welcome and grace. Look for life not in the promise of status or fame, but in the still, small voice of radical love.
Go in peace and love, listening to the voice of God
amid the blur and noise of the world, offering
nourishment to neighbor and stranger, and re-
membering the love of a humble but mighty God.
We go with renewed hope and a braver faith.
Scripture Reading Matthew 10: 40-42 NRSV
“Whoever welcomes you welcomes me, and whoever welcomes me welcomes the one who sent me. Whoever welcomes a prophet in the name of a prophet will receive a prophet’s reward; and whoever welcomes a righteous person in the name of a righteous person will receive the reward of the righteous; and whoever gives even a cup of cold water to one of these little ones in the name of a disciple—truly I tell you, none of these will lose their reward.”
Storytelling – Welcome
Based on Matthew 10:40–42
I’m a little nervous as I reach out to knock on the door of the house. My friend and I are in need of a roof over our heads tonight, somewhere off the streets away from bandits and other concerns of the night. Not that there’s any reason for anyone to attack us, all we have are the clothes on our backs and the shoes on our feet but staying out is still risky. Anyway, we have chosen to inquire about shelter for the night here because, well…this house looks nice.
We can never be sure of how people will receive us. Most people are hospitable, it’s one of the wonderful things about living in these parts. Strangers are almost always taken in and offered hospitality. But things are a bit different for us. We are Christians – followers of Jesus of Nazareth, and sometimes people are afraid of having us in their homes. We are considered renegades and rebels by the authorities. That’s hard to accept when all we are doing is talking about the love and care of God to all who want to hear about it.
I step back from the door. I feel anxious and afraid, concerned about how we will manage if these people turn us away. I think back to the day when Jesus gathered us together and spoke about what was ahead of us if we chose to be his disciples.
“Whoever welcomes you welcomes me, and the One who sent me,” he told us. “You are my prophets and whoever welcomes you and any righteous person will receive a heavenly reward. Anyone who gives the least of you a cup of cold water when you are thirsty and in need, will be welcome in God’s realm. As you enter any house, reassure the people who offer you hospitality that God looks kindly on them.”
With a picture of Jesus in my mind and these words in my ears, I step up and start knocking.