We still ourselves, and call ourselves to worship with the words that remind us of our Shepherd and Redeemer
CALL TO WORSHIP
We rejoice in the One who leads us beside still waters,
And gives us refreshment of soul.
Christ our Shepherd shows us the way we should go,
So that the name of God will be glorified.
Though all manner of evil befall us, we will not be afraid,
For the Great Shepherd of our souls is with us.
We are never away from the love and mercy of the Lord,
And we shall be with him for ever and ever. Amen!
Lord Jesus Christ,
we come together because You call us.
Sometimes in the noisy bustle of life
Your call sounds faintly,
but somehow we have heard
and we are here.
We come in our weakness and uncertainty,
with our doubts
and our sense of unworthiness,
yet knowing Your voice
and trusting that our hope will not be disappointed.
Draw us closer to You.
Meet with us in our worship,
and lead us through the coming week.
we worship You.
We bless You for Your love
which will not fail us.
As a shepherd gathers their flock
so, Good Shepherd, You gather us here today
to feed and refresh us.
Some of us come rejoicing
because our path has led through green pastures;
some come battered and bruised by life
because our path has led through dark and frightening valleys.
We need to know Your strength restoring our souls;
some of us, like foolish sheep, come before You ashamed
because we have wandered astray instead of following You
and now we come seeking Your forgiveness.
Thank You that in Your grace
and through the Lord Jesus
You seek us out,
You find us,
You help us,
and give us now joy and hope.
We hear Your call
to care for others as You care for us,
to love as You love,
to give and go on giving,
to heal, to feed,
to nurture and reconcile.
Help us to show our thankfulness
not only in our praise and prayers,
but by following You
in the way of self-sacrificing love,
bringing others to give thanks and love You too.
Meet with us by Your Spirit.
Make us one.
Lead us in Your ways
for Your glory.
5 You prepare a table before me
in the presence of my enemies;
you anoint my head with oil;
my cup overflows.
6 Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me
all the days of my life,
and I shall dwell in the house of the Lord
my whole life long.
Psalm 23 is one of, if not the best known and best loved texts in all of Scripture. It has brought comfort and strength to those on the battlefield, in the hospital, at a graveside, and to people going through almost any other kind of trial imaginable. It is also sung at weddings and times of celebration. It is a psalm for all seasons.
We praise You for the living Christ
the Shepherd who knows His sheep;
not only those who are safe in His fold
but all who are far away
and have not heard His voice.
Today we pray for all who suffer and are not cared for –
the old who die alone,
the young who are neglected or cruelly treated,
young and old whose weaknesses are exploited,
and sensitivities abused,
all who are led astray,
all who are exploited,
for the vulnerable who are taken advantage of
and have no-one to stand by their side.
We pray for all who have grown hopeless
in their hunger and homelessness –
refugees from war and violence
trapped at borders or in makeshift camps,
those whose lives have been wrecked by conflicts
they do not understand
and cannot affect or change,
victims of military aggression
or political ideology.
In a world of so much suffering
we pray too for the affluent,
comfortable and cared for,
who do not care;
for those who know what they should do
but do not bother;
for those who close their eyes and minds
and those who do not want to get involved.
And we pray for those who do care;
for those who accept the pain, cost and disturbance
that knowledge brings;
for those who want to help
but cannot see how.
Show them a way.
We pray for those who go
Where there is trouble, pain and poverty,
risking life and limb,
facing danger and fear.
Father, as we pray,
increase the depth of love in us
that we might give ourselves to others,
as You give Yourself to us.
Give us such joy
that the sheep may be found;
given health, strength, food
and hope for the future
and shown the way home.
Give us grace to follow You
wherever You lead
for Jesus’ sake,