Weekly Reading, Prayers and Reflections

28 June 2020                      Third Sunday after Trinity          Green

Genesis 22.1-14     Psalm 13      Romans 6.12-23    Matthew 10.40-42

 

Opening responses

O Lord, open our lips
and our mouth shall proclaim your praise.
Give us the joy of your saving help
and sustain us with your life-giving Spirit.

 

Confession and Absolution

We have wandered from your paths, yet your truth leads us home.
Lord, have mercy.             Lord, have mercy.

 

We have failed to live as your children, yet your love restores us.
Christ, have mercy.           Christ, have mercy.

 

We are disfigured by our sin, yet your power heals us.
Lord, have mercy.             Lord, have mercy.

 

May the God of all healing and forgiveness draw us to himself, and cleanse us from all our sins that we may behold the glory of his Son, the Word made flesh, Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

 

Collect

Almighty God, you have broken the tyranny of sin and have sent the Spirit of your Son into our hearts whereby we call you Father: give us grace to dedicate our freedom to your service, that we and all creation may be brought to the glorious liberty of the children of God; through Jesus Christ your Son our Lord, Amen.

 

Gospel                      Matthew 10.40-42

40‘Whoever welcomes you welcomes me, and whoever welcomes me welcomes the one who sent me. 41Whoever 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; 42and 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.’

 

 

Reflection

Being welcome is the basis of our faith. As God has welcomed us so we are to welcome others. As people who live in an unbelievably beautiful area, we are at times overwhelmed with visitors. Sometimes our welcome becomes a bit strained when the roads get clogged and cars are parked in dangerous places, and when the litter overwhelms the lanes. But generally, the churches of Land’s End are welcoming and loving.

 

However, we are being challenged in how we welcome this year, the ending of the lockdown is too late for some and far too early for others. Those who are used to having our beaches and roads to ourselves and who have real health concerns may find welcoming the stranger more of a dangerous act than a biblical imperative.

 

We cannot lose the biblical imperative of welcome, for this welcome is an echo of the welcome God offers to each of us. Within the Jewish tradition hospitality is key. In the story of Abram and Sara the three strangers were messengers from God. Those who offer hospitality may be welcoming God the creator of all, the Lord of life!  The story of Lot is also one based on hospitality. How we engage with one another speaks volumes about how we engage with God too.

 

The Jewish Virtual Library says: “In Judaism, showing hospitality …  to guests is considered a mitzvah [which refers to precepts and commandments commanded by God, with the additional connotation of one's religious duty.] When one knows of strangers who are hungry or need a place to relax, it becomes a legal obligation. Some rabbis consider hakhnasat orchim (literally the “bringing in of strangers”) to be a part of gemilut hasadim (giving of loving kindness)”.

 

So when Jesus speaks of welcome he is not meaning the kind wave as folk pass by or the smile instead of fist waving when the tourist cars make passageways impossible to navigate. Remember that Jesus’ listeners would not have had the benefit of a cold tap, when he says, “gives even a cup of cold water”. There is a cost to this. The water would need to be collected by hand, from the village well, and stored carefully in the heat so that it would be cold. Welcome as Jesus knows it is costly. Welcome is about making you vulnerable and outside your comfort zone so that the stranger can stay IN THEIR comfort zone. It is about thinking of the other and putting yourself in their shoes.

 

How is God calling us to be a welcoming face in this community? What ways will be welcoming in this different world. And how does this challenge you?

When we see visitors to our community, we will not know what has driven them here, we will not know what has happened to them and their families this year. While we need to keep safe, and protect ourselves and families from possible infection, we also need to be kind. Kind to the visitor, the tourist, the seeker and those who are frankly not folk we would want to offer a cup of cold water to! Kindness might at times seem costly this year but we have to remember that whoever welcomes one of the least is welcoming our Living Lord too. Amen.

 

A prayer for the holiday season that is coming upon us  from Truro Diocese
Heavenly Father, thank you for holidays
Thank you that we live in a place beloved by holidaymakers
We ask for your blessing on all the businesses that rely on tourism
And ask for kindness at a time that could be difficult
We pray for wisdom, for understanding and consideration
And we pray that you will keep our beautiful county safe. Amen

 

Intercessions by Vanda Perrett

Lord of the sky, the heavens and all that is beneath them, we praise your holy name and thank you for your loving kindness to your creation. We pray today for our world. We pray for the places where the abuse of the planet has created lasting damage to the earth and its creatures. Teach us Lord to make right choices, to live sustainably and to become the stewards of this earth who will nurture it in your name. Lord in your mercy, hear our prayer.

 

Father, Son and Holy Spirit, God of relationships and harmony we pray for the people of this world who do not live in harmony with their family, their friends, community or the world. For those who are at war with others and themselves. We pray for our leaders, that they may choose wisely and make decisions for the good of all. We pray for those with responsibility to make laws and enforce them. May justice and love be found in their decisions.

Lord in your mercy, hear our prayer.

 

Creator Redeemer Sustainer, God who is creator and creating we pray for those whose livelihood is based on their creativity, in art or jewellery in music or wordsmiths, in crafts or the environment. May their creativity give rise to others exploring their creative gifts, may the beauty that is made by their imagination be a pathway to wonder and awe of you our Creator.

Lord in your mercy, hear our prayer.

 

Calmer of the storms, defender of the weak, hope of the lost, we pray to you God, for those whose lives are challenged by ill health, both seen and unseen. We pray for those whose lives are chaotic and challenging, for those who feel abandoned and without hope. May they find in you peace and comfort, and courage to face the challenges in their lives.

Lord in your mercy, hear our prayer.

 

God of all, our companion on our journey, our guide and supporter, we pray to you for ourselves, and those we love. When we are getting tired on the way, may we find strength and courage in you. When we get lost or are challenged and struggling with faith and life, make us aware of your presence and love for us. Travel with us and help us to become your pilgrim people, faithfully following in the steps of your Son.

 

Concluding with the Lord’s Prayer:

Our Father who art in heaven, hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come, Thy will be on done on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread. 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, the power and the glory, forever and ever, Amen.

 

Closing Prayers

O God, whose beauty is beyond our imagining and whose power we cannot comprehend: show us your glory as far as we can grasp it, and shield us from knowing more than we can bear until we may look upon you without fear;
through Jesus Christ our Saviour. Amen.

 

Jesus, Lord of time,
hold us in your eternity.
 

Jesus, image of God,
travel with us the life of faith.
 

Jesus, friend of sinners,
heal the brokenness of our world.
 

Jesus, Lord of tomorrow,
draw us into your future. Amen.

 

Go and live the welcome of God, the peace of God and the love of God

We go in peace and love to welcome God in one another.  Amen.

 

 


Printer Printable Version
Bookmark and Share