My Church at Home

Part of my job is “taking church” to our people who aren’t able to be with us on Sunday mornings. We call it My Church at Home.

A couple from the church and I will go later this morning to share in worship with one of our members. Here is our service order for today:

Call to Worship
Psalm 126
Hymn
O Come o Come Emanuel
Scripture
Luke 1:46b-55
Pastoral prayer and Lord’s Prayer
Hymn
It Came Upon the Midnight Clear
Scripture
Isaiah 40:1-5

Comfort, comfort my people, says your God.
Speak tenderly to Jerusalem, and cry to her
that her warfare is ended, that her iniquity is pardoned,
that she has received from the Lord double for all her sins.

A voice cries: ” in the wilderness prepare the way of the Lord; make straight in the desert a highway for our God. Every valley shall be lifted up, and every mountain and hill made low;

the uneven ground shall become level and the rough places plain. And the glory of the Lord shall be revealed, and all flesh shall see it together, for the
mouth of the Lord has spoken.”

Reflections on Isaiah 40:1-5
Comfort in the wilderness is a common theme for the people of Israel. Exiled and banished from their homes, they’re stumbling around through life trying to find their way.

In the wasteland of wilderness God seems far away.

God speaks a word of comfort to them through the prophet, that their time the wilderness is coming to an end- their exile will end in homecoming, and the wilderness will make way for the glory of the Lord.

In Advent, the glory of the Lord is revealed in Jesus for whom we wait.

For the people of Israel, the words of the prophet are a breath of fresh air, a celebration of a long awaited homecoming and a beacon of hope to brighten their lives.

For us, these words are a reminder of our long awaited savior, Jesus, who came and lived out the glory of God for us, who lived us into relationship with God through his sacrifice of love.

We celebrate this sacrifice today, in the sharing of communion.

The Lord Jesus, on the night he was betrayed took bread. And after he had blessed it he broke it and said “this is my body which is for you. Do this to remember me.”

In the same way he took the cup and after giving thanks he said to them “this cup is the new covenant in my blood. Take it and drink it all of you, to remember me. For whenever you eat this bread; whenever you drink this cup, you proclaim the Lord’s death until he comes.”

Communion
Meditation and Special Music
Come Thou Long Expected Jesus
Hymn
O Come All Ye Faithful
Prayers of the People
Hymn
Go Tell it On the Mountain
Benediction

One of our members was talking with another and said of his My Church at Home Experience: “we had a real church service, right here. I enjoyed it very much.”

At least twice a week, I can’t believe how blessed I am to serve a generous congregation, and to be using concepts I researched for my final paper in seminary in actual practice.

Thanks be to God.

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