Year V: Week 25 of Ordinary Time

Thursday: Afternoon 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 the 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.


CALL TO WORSHIP

Reader:
God, come to my assistance.
All: 
Lord, make haste to help me.

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


AFTERNOON PSALM

Psalm 142

A psalm of David, regarding his experience in the cave. A prayer.

I cry out to the Lord;
    I plead for the Lord’s mercy.
I pour out my complaints before him
    and tell him all my troubles.
When I am overwhelmed,
    you alone know the way I should turn.
Wherever I go,
    my enemies have set traps for me.
I look for someone to come and help me,
    but no one gives me a passing thought!
No one will help me;
    no one cares a bit what happens to me.
Then I pray to you, O Lord.
    I say, “You are my place of refuge.
    You are all I really want in life.
Hear my cry,
    for I am very low.
Rescue me from my persecutors,
    for they are too strong for me.
Bring me out of prison
    so I can thank you.
The godly will crowd around me,
    for you are good to me.”

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 
(Optional)

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


OLD TESTAMENT READING

Song of Solomon 3:1-11

The Woman Dreams

At night on my bed,
    I looked for the one I love;
    I looked for him, but I could not find him.
I got up and went around the city,
    in the streets and squares,
looking for the one I love.
    I looked for him, but I could not find him.
The watchmen found me as they patrolled the city,
    so I asked, “Have you seen the one I love?”
As soon as I had left them,
    I found the one I love.
I held him and would not let him go
    until I brought him to my mother’s house,
    to the room where I was born.

The Woman Speaks to the Friends

Women of Jerusalem, promise me
    by the gazelles and the deer
not to awaken
    or excite my feelings of love
    until it is ready.
Who is this coming out of the desert
    like a cloud of smoke?
Who is this that smells like myrrh, incense,
    and other spices?
Look, it’s Solomon’s couch
    with sixty soldiers around it,
    the finest soldiers of Israel.
These soldiers all carry swords
    and have been trained in war.
Every man wears a sword at his side
    and is ready for the dangers of the night.
King Solomon had a couch made for himself
    of wood from Lebanon.
He made its posts of silver
    and its braces of gold.
The seat was covered with purple cloth
    that the women of Jerusalem wove with love.
Women of Jerusalem, go out and see King Solomon.
    He is wearing the crown his mother put on his head
on his wedding day,
    when his heart was happy!

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


Pause for Reflection……


PRAYER 

(Take a moment to bring to God any issues that have arisen during the morning.  You may like to end with the following prayer…)

Reader:
Holy Father, we commit to you the work already done today,
Bless the work of our hands and forgive our many errors,
That we may we be empowered to serve you ever more fully.  Amen

 

GRACE (Optional)

Reader:

Lord God, we thank you for your gift to us of this food;
Produce of earth, sky, many living beings, and much hard work.

May we eat with prayerfulness, gratitude and moderation;
With renewed minds and spirit-controlled appetites.

May we eat with compassion for those who hunger today,
And in such a way that reduces the suffering of all creatures;
Healing and preserving our precious planet.

Use this food to strengthen our bodies, revive our spirits,
Nurture our family and nourish our resolve;
That we may continue to serve all that lives with all our life. 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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