Year V: Week 5 of Ordinary Time

Wednesday: Morning Prayer

ABOUT TODAY

In the church calendar the long stretch of time between Pentecost and the beginning of Advent is known as ‘Ordinary Time.’ Inasmuch as we have celebrated to birth, death and resurrection of the Lord Jesus and the subsequent descent of the Holy Spirit; so this time is often seen as representative of the long ‘Church Age’ when the gospel is preached to all creation. Because of that, our intercessions during this period will include prayers for every single nation of the world by name.


CALL TO WORSHIP

Reader:
Lord, Open my lips.
All:
And my mouth will give you praise.

Reader:
All glory to God; Father, Son and Holy Spirit.
All:
As it has been from the beginning, is today and forever! Amen


INVITATORY PSALM:

Psalm 95:1-7 (Venite, exultemus)

All:

Come, let us sing to the Lord!
Let us shout joyfully to the Rock of our salvation.
Let us come to him with thanksgiving.
Let us sing psalms of praise to him.
For the Lord is a great God,
a great King above all gods.
He holds in his hands the depths of the earth
and the mightiest mountains.
The sea belongs to him, for he made it.
His hands formed the dry land, too.

Come, let us worship and bow down.
Let us kneel before the Lord our maker,
for he is our God.
We are the people he watches over,
the flock under his care.

All:
Glory be to the Father and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit. As it was in the beginning, is now, and ever shall be, world without end. Amen


MORNING PSALM

Psalm 62

For Jeduthun, the choir director: A psalm of David.

I wait quietly before God,
    for my victory comes from him.
He alone is my rock and my salvation,
    my fortress where I will never be shaken.

So many enemies against one man—
    all of them trying to kill me.
To them I’m just a broken-down wall
    or a tottering fence.
They plan to topple me from my high position.
    They delight in telling lies about me.
They praise me to my face
    but curse me in their hearts. Interlude

Let all that I am wait quietly before God,
    for my hope is in him.
He alone is my rock and my salvation,
    my fortress where I will not be shaken.
My victory and honour come from God alone.
    He is my refuge, a rock where no enemy can reach me.
O my people, trust in him at all times.
    Pour out your heart to him,
    for God is our refuge. Interlude

Common people are as worthless as a puff of wind,
    and the powerful are not what they appear to be.
If you weigh them on the scales,
    together they are lighter than a breath of air.

Don’t make your living by extortion
    or put your hope in stealing.
And if your wealth increases,
    don’t make it the centre of your life.

God has spoken plainly,
    and I have heard it many times:
Power, O God, belongs to you;
    unfailing love, O Lord, is yours.
Surely you repay all people
    according to what they have done.

All:
Glory be to the Father and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit. As it was in the beginning, is now, and ever shall be, world without end. Amen


WORSHIP

All:
(A time of worship and thanksgiving, led or spontaneous. Alternatively a devotional song may be played and listened to.)


PRAYER & INTERCESSION

Reader:
Let us pray for the day and its tasks, for the church and her life, and for the world and its needs.

(You may use these prayers as written or use them as ‘prayer pointers’ for your own spontaneous petitions.

Personal Requests

  • Almighty God, every morning your grace and glory captivates us! We thank you for a new day and give praise to you who caused light to shine out of darkness. Today by your grace we shall triumph in the works of your hands and we are anointed with fresh oil. Today we shall flourish as palm trees and grow like cedars in Lebanon!
              – The Lord is strong and mighty; we are confident in Him…
  • Planted in the House of the Lord, we shall thrive in the courts of our God.
              – The Lord is strong and mighty; we are confident in Him…
  • Being fruitful in every season of life, full of health and vitality!
              – The Lord is strong and mighty; we are confident in Him…

Family & Friends

  • God, who puts the lonely into families and brings those who are surrounded by debt into prosperity, protect our families and loved ones today. As iron sharpens iron so may our relationships bring us closer to Christ; and as two are better than one, so may we be vigilant to watch over each other and work for each other’s good.
              – The Lord is strong and mighty; we are confident in Him…
  • When your Spirit came in times past, we read that whole households were saved. We pray for the damaged and broken families of our church and call out to you for salvation for all!
              – The Lord is strong and mighty; we are confident in Him…
  • For those in further education, that they may find good churches to support them and good friendships to sustain them.
              – The Lord is strong and mighty; we are confident in Him…

The Church

  • Lord Jesus, we pray for your people. May they be instructed to know your ways, empowered to share their faith, enriched with every blessing, and absorbed with love for you. May your people be one, even as you are one with the Father.
              – The Lord is strong and mighty; we are confident in Him…
  • For Pope Francis, his bishops, priests, ministers, and all those that serve your people…
              – The Lord is strong and mighty; we are confident in Him…
  • For our Orthodox brothers and sisters, tested by persecution and triumphant by faith…
              – The Lord is strong and mighty; we are confident in Him…
  • For the Churches of the Reformation, the Anglican Communion, and the free churches…
              – The Lord is strong and mighty; we are confident in Him…

The World

  • Lord Jesus, we join with you at the Throne of Grace and pray for humanity.  We ask you for the Islands of Cape Verde, a people who suffer great drought and poverty.  We pray for wise leaders who will guide the nation into the light rather than settle for darkness.
              – The Lord is strong and mighty; we are confident in Him…
  • We thank you for the 6% increase each year in Christianity. We declare a double portion of this number within your Church, may she be overflowing with true disciples and filled with the Holy Spirit to preach your Gospel.
              – The Lord is strong and mighty; we are confident in Him…
  • Break the chains of superstition within your Church. May she come to the knowledge that where the presence of the Lord is there is freedom.
              – The Lord is strong and mighty; we are confident in Him…
  • For the 490,000 Caboverdians living in migrant communities. Raise up men and women of faith to be a spiritual and economic blessing to the homeland.
              – The Lord is strong and mighty; we are confident in Him…
  • Jesus, it is easy to become nervous and panicked in life, yet you God are our refuge and our very present help in this time of trouble. We trust you Jesus!
              – The Lord is strong and mighty; we are confident in Him…


THE LORD’S
PRAYER

Reader:
And so we pray…

All:
Our Father in heaven,
Holy is Your Name.
Your Kingdom come.
Your 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.
And lead us not into temptation,
But deliver us from evil.
For yours is the kingdom,
The power, and the glory,
Forever and ever. Amen.


GOSPEL READING

Acts 15:1-21

The Meeting at Jerusalem

Then some people came to Antioch from Judea and began teaching the non-Jewish believers: “You cannot be saved if you are not circumcised as Moses taught us.” Paul and Barnabas were against this teaching and argued with them about it. So the church decided to send Paul, Barnabas, and some others to Jerusalem where they could talk more about this with the apostles and elders.

The church helped them leave on the trip, and they went through the countries of Phoenicia and Samaria, telling all about how the other nations had turned to God. This made all the believers very happy. When they arrived in Jerusalem, they were welcomed by the apostles, the elders, and the church. Paul, Barnabas, and the others told about everything God had done with them. But some of the believers who belonged to the Pharisee group came forward and said, “The non-Jewish believers must be circumcised. They must be told to obey the law of Moses.”

The apostles and the elders gathered to consider this problem. After a long debate, Peter stood up and said to them, “Brothers, you know that in the early days God chose me from among you to preach the Good News to the nations. They heard the Good News from me, and they believed. God, who knows the thoughts of everyone, accepted them. He showed this to us by giving them the Holy Spirit, just as he did to us. To God, those people are not different from us. When they believed, he made their hearts pure. So now why are you testing God by putting a heavy load around the necks of the non-Jewish believers? It is a load that neither we nor our ancestors were able to carry. But we believe that we and they too will be saved by the grace of the Lord Jesus.”

Then the whole group became quiet. They listened to Paul and Barnabas tell about all the miracles and signs that God did through them among the people. After they finished speaking, James said, “Brothers, listen to me. Simon has told us how God showed his love for those people. For the first time he is accepting from among them a people to be his own. The words of the prophets agree with this too:

‘After these things I will return.
    The kingdom of David is like a fallen tent.
But I will rebuild its ruins,
    and I will set it up.
Then those people who are left alive may ask the Lord for help,
    and the other nations that belong to me,
says the Lord,
    who will make it happen.
And these things have been known for a long time.’

“So I think we should not bother the other people who are turning to God. Instead, we should write a letter to them telling them these things: Stay away from food that has been offered to idols (which makes it unclean), any kind of sexual sin, eating animals that have been strangled, and blood. They should do these things, because for a long time in every city the law of Moses has been taught. And it is still read in the synagogue every Sabbath day.”

Reader:
The Word of the Lord.
All:
Thanks be to God.


Pause for Reflection…

READING: THE WAY OF CHRIST (Optional)

Principle of discipleship drawn from the book, “The Way of Christ”

Reader:
The Way of Prayer: The Principle of Contemplative Living.

Aware that quietness and stillness are vital for spiritual life, I determine to build silence and solitude into my week and the practice of retreat into my schedule. As a follower of the Way of Prayer, I will seek to develop a contemplative lifestyle.

All:
This is The Way of Prayer: The Principle of Contemplative Living.


Pause for Reflection…


THE APOSTLES CREED

Reader:
And so we make our declaration of faith…

All:
We believe in God the Father, Almighty,
Maker of heaven and earth:
And in Jesus Christ his only Son our Lord,
Who was conceived by the Holy Spirit,
Born of the Virgin Mary,
Suffered under Pontius Pilate,
Was crucified, dead, and buried:
He descended into the grave;
The third day he rose again from the dead;
He ascended into heaven,
And sits on the right hand of God the Father Almighty;
From there he shall come to judge the living and the dead.
We believe in the Holy Spirit;
The Holy Worldwide Church;
The Communion of Saints;
The Forgiveness of sins;
The Resurrection of the body,
And the Life everlasting. Amen.


COLLECT

Reader:
(Either this or an alternative closing prayer may be said.)

Creator God, you made us all in your image:
May we discern you in all that we see,
And serve you in all that we do;
Through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.


BLESSING

Reader:
(When praying in community, this or a similar blessing may be used)

And may the love of God set your hearts free,
To live an abundant life overflowing in joy and compassion,
In the service of others. Amen.


Psalms in Bold – Scripture taken from the New King James Version®. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson. Used by permission. All rights reserved

All other Psalms – Scripture quotations are taken from The Living Bible copyright © 1971. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, a Division of Tyndale House Ministries, Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.

All other Scripture taken from The Holy Bible, New Century Version®. Copyright © 2005 by Thomas Nelson. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

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