Sunday Trinity 7 2021 – 18/7/21

Services posts

Morning Service for Trinity 7

HYMN New every morning is the love NEH 238/AMR 4 – Melcombe

1 New every morning is the love

Our wakening and uprising prove;

Through sleep and darkness safely brought,

Restored to life, and power, and thought.

2 New mercies, each returning day,

Hover around us while we pray;

New perils past, new sins forgiven,

New thoughts of God, new hopes of heaven.

3 If on our daily course our mind

Be set to hallow all we find,

New treasures still, of countless price,

God will provide for sacrifice.

4 The trivial round, the common task,

Would furnish all we ought to ask,

Room to deny ourselves, a road

To bring us daily nearer God.

5 Only, O Lord, in thy dear love

Fit us for perfect rest above;

And help us this and every day

To live more nearly as we pray

.

PRAYER OF PREPARATION
Almighty God, to whom all hearts are open,
all desires known, and from whom no secrets are hidden:
cleanse the thoughts of our hearts
by the inspiration of your Holy Spirit,
that we may perfectly love you,
and worthily magnify your holy name;
through Christ our Lord. Amen


PRAYERS OF PENITENCE 

We recall our Lord’s command to love and in a moment of silence we confess 

the many ways we fail to keep his command:

Most merciful God, 

Father of our Lord Jesus Christ,
we confess that we have sinned
in thought, word and deed.
We have not loved you with our whole heart.
We have not loved our neighbours as ourselves.
In your mercy forgive what we have been,
help us to amend what we are,
and direct what we shall be;
that we may do justly, love mercy,
and walk humbly with you, our God.   Amen

May the God of love and power
forgive us and free us from our sins,
heal and strengthen us by his Spirit,
and raise us to new life in Christ our Lord. Amen.


THE COLLECT

Lord of all power and might, the author and giver of all good things:

graft in our hearts the love of your name,

increase in us true religion, nourish us with all goodness,

and of your great mercy keep us in the same;

through Jesus Christ your Son our Lord.  Amen.

FIRST READING – 2 Samuel 7.1-14a

Now when the king was settled in his house, and the LORD had given him rest from all his enemies around him, the king said to the prophet Nathan, “See now, I am living in a house of cedar, but the ark of God stays in a tent.” Nathan said to the king, “Go, do all that you have in mind; for the LORD is with you.”

But that same night the word of the LORD came to Nathan: Go and tell my servant David: Thus says the LORD: Are you the one to build me a house to live in? I have not lived in a house since the day I brought up the people of Israel from Egypt to this day, but I have been moving about in a tent and a tabernacle. Wherever I have moved about among all the people of Israel, did I ever speak a word with any of the tribal leaders of Israel, whom I commanded to shepherd my people Israel, saying, “Why have you not built me a house of cedar?” Now therefore thus you shall say to my servant David: Thus says the LORD of hosts: I took you from the pasture, from following the sheep to be prince over my people Israel; and I have been with you wherever you went, and have cut off all your enemies from before you; and I will make for you a great name, like the name of the great ones of the earth. And I will appoint a place for my people Israel and will plant them, so that they may live in their own place, and be disturbed no more; and evildoers shall afflict them no more, as formerly, from the time that I appointed judges over my people Israel; and I will give you rest from all your enemies. Moreover the LORD declares to you that the LORD will make you a house. When your days are fulfilled and you lie down with your ancestors, I will raise up your offspring after you, who shall come forth from your body, and I will establish his kingdom. He shall build a house for my name, and I will establish the throne of his kingdom forever. I will be a father to him, and he shall be a son to me.

HYMN Dear Lord and father of mankind NEH 353/AMR 184 – Repton

1 Dear Lord and Father of mankind,

Forgive our foolish ways!

Re-clothe us in our rightful mind,

In purer lives thy service find,

In deeper reverence praise.

2 In simple trust like theirs who heard,

Beside the Syrian sea,

The gracious calling of the Lord,

Let us, like them, without a word

Rise up and follow thee.

3 *O Sabbath rest by Galilee!

O calm of hills above,

Where Jesus knelt to share with thee

The silence of eternity,

Interpreted by love!

4 Drop thy still dews of quietness,

Till all our strivings cease;

Take from our souls the strain and stress,

And let our ordered lives confess

The beauty of thy peace.

5 Breathe through the heats of our desire

Thy coolness and thy balm;

Let sense be dumb, let flesh retire;

Speak through the earthquake, 

wind, and fire,

O still small voice of calm!

GOSPEL – Mark 6.14-29

The apostles gathered around Jesus, and told him all that they had done and taught. He said to them, “Come away to a deserted place all by yourselves and rest a while.” For many were coming and going, and they had no leisure even to eat. And they went away in the boat to a deserted place by themselves. Now many saw them going and recognised them, and they hurried there on foot from all the towns and arrived ahead of them. As he went ashore, he saw a great crowd; and he had compassion for them, because they were like sheep without a shepherd; and he began to teach them many things.

When they had crossed over, they came to land at Gennesaret and moored the boat. When they got out of the boat, people at once recognised him, and rushed about that whole region and began to bring the sick on mats to wherever they heard he was. And wherever he went, into villages or cities or farms, they laid the sick in the marketplaces, and begged him that they might touch even the fringe of his cloak; and all who touched it were healed.

SERMON 

Today’s reading from St Mark’s Gospel is, at first sight, rather unspectacular. The most dramatic parts of this section of St Mark’s Gospel have been taken out, the feeding of the 5000, Jesus walking on water and the second stilling of a storm. All three of them are covered in next week’s Gospel reading in John’s version of events. But what we have left does have some interest, it’s full of movement if not action, there’s lots going on and it’s all rather evocative. 

 The disciples have just returned from their first missionary journey with much to say and many stories to tell, so now must come their debriefing, they must talk it out, share their experiences, confess their fears, revel in their successes, commiserate over their failures. A psychologist might call it: co-counselling, we might just say, “that’s what friends are for.”  It’s certainly what a community is for. Jesus then tells them to come with him to a deserted place, and what’s more, to come by boat.  This is indeed a text for our time and our place.   

The inadequacy of the disciples is a constant theme in Mark’s Gospel, their weakness of faith, their propensity to get the wrong end of the stick, their hope for power and eventually glory, their depressing similarity to the rest of us. And yet Jesus’ never gives up on them, even at the end when they have run away and left him to his fate, his resurrection message sent through the young man in white is addressed to them. “I am going ahead of you into Galilee, you will see me there” – business as usual, back to work, the daily work of living and proclaiming the gospel. 

It was through the disciples that Jesus chose to act, for all their faults and failings, their every day humanity, Jesus chose them to teach his words and speak his mind. But it was through them as a body, not as individuals, that he instructed them and propelled them into the world. Their strength was their togetherness, for all its fragility it was their unity that Jesus decided to trust to bear his message. So not only was Jesus encouraging a bit of rest and recuperation he was doing a bit of old fashioned team building as well. 

The disciples’ trip in a boat isn’t the only evocative scene Mark gives to us in this passage. Mark describes the crowds that seek Jesus – they won’t let him rest, they hunger for … what? What was their need? Jesus said that they were like sheep without a shepherd. But what part of the shepherd’s function did they need… protection, leadership, someone to help them find their way? We know Jesus had no intention of leading a political revolution, so what shepherding did he think they needed? Mark tells us that his response was to teach them many things. But Mark rather frustratingly doesn’t tell us what things, Matthew’s Sermon on the Mount type things perhaps, or the parables that we know from St Luke – the prodigal Son and the Good Samaritan – a way to live, and a way of looking at life that is liberating. Jesus doesn’t offer them political leadership, rather he offers them a way to share and a way to forgive, a way to repent and a way to give – and in the end he offers them food from their own resources and hope through their own faith. He teaches them not to look for a new shepherd but how not to be sheep.

We crave leadership – someone to tell us what to do, or what we should do. Decisions are difficult, taking responsibility for an action, or an opinion is worrying and stressful; better to fall in behind someone who sounds as if they know what to do. But I don’t think that that’s the way it’s supposed to be. Take our church for example, as a community of faith its effectiveness is down to us all, each with their part to play – each of us taking a share in our common responsibility to bear the life of Christ to this place, to worship God and demonstrate his love to the world. If our mission relied on any one us it would fail – but it doesn’t, just as the disciples before us we share the burden, and the joy, and so make the impossible possible. Our greatest tool for mission is ourselves, our only asset, each other.

AFFIRMATION OF FAITH
Let us declare our faith in the resurrection of our Lord Jesus Christ:

Christ died for our sins in accordance with the scriptures;
he was buried; he was raised to life on the third day
in accordance with the scriptures;
afterwards he appeared to his followers,
and to all the apostles: this we have received,
and this we believe.  Amen.
1 Corinthians 15.3-7

HYMN Just as I am NEH 294/AMR 349 – Saffron Walden

1 Just as I am, without one plea

But that thy blood was shed for me,

And that thou bidd’st me come to thee,

O Lamb of God, I come.

2 Just as I am, though tossed about

With many a conflict, many a doubt,

Fightings within, and fears without,

O Lamb of God, I come.

3 Just as I am, poor, wretched, blind;

Sight, riches, healing of the mind,

Yea all I need, in thee to find,

O Lamb of God, I come.

4 Just as I am, thou wilt receive,

Wilt welcome, pardon, cleanse, relieve:

Because thy promise I believe,

O Lamb of God, I come! I come!

5 Just as I am (thy love unknown

Has broken every barrier down),

Now to be thine, yea thine alone,

O Lamb of God, I come.

6 Just as I am, of that free love

The breadth, length, depth 

and height to prove,

Here for a season then above,

O Lamb of God, I come.

PRAYERS OF INTERCESSION – Myra Wilkinson

We come to you Lord, with our concerns for your world, for our communities, families and friends. We ask you to hear our prayers and grant us your grace.

Everlasting Lord, we pray that all who come into our churches may find rest, peace, strength, love and your abiding presence. Help us to be outward looking, that through our fellowship and worship we may share our faith with those we love and live amongst. We thank you and pray for the continued ministry of William in this benefice, for our Bishops, Clergy and laity and for all who sustain and care for our places of worship. 

Lord in your mercy:  hear our prayer.

We pray for your justice and compassion to reach those in need across your world, wherever there is political instability, drought, famine, war and poverty, compounded by the Covid pandemic. We pray for a resolution to the suffering of the people of Yemen, Tigray and Afghanistan and for a fairer distribution of aid and vaccines across the many nations where resources are scarce.

Lord in your mercy:  hear our prayer.

We pray that we may respond to the needs of our families, friends and neighbours with fairness and equity, as you respond to each of us.  We pray for your wisdom, patience and guidance as we move cautiously into a new phase of living with coronavirus. Help us to be considerate and mindful of the safety of everyone.

Lord in your mercy:  hear our prayer.

Healing God, we bring before you all who are sick.  We ask that you will ease their pain and heal the damage done to them in body mind and spirit. Be present with them through the support of friends and families and through the skills and dedication of medical staff and carers. Fill them with the warmth of your love, now and always. We pray especially for Lindsay, and in a moment of silence for all known to us who need your healing touch.

Lord in your mercy:  hear our prayer.

Merciful God, we commend into your hands those whom we have loved and see no more. You gave them breath and loved and cared for them throughout their lives. Receive them now into your eternal kingdom and may they rest in peace.

Lord in your mercy:  hear our prayer.

Faithful Lord, we bring all our concerns, petitions and prayers to your loving care. Please give us the strength and courage to continually walk with you, our faithful and loving shepherd.

Merciful Father, accept these prayers, for the sake of your Son, our Saviour Jesus Christ. Amen

As our Saviour taught us, so we pray:

Our Father in heaven, hallowed be your name,
your kingdom come, your will be done,
on earth as in heaven. Give us today our daily bread.
Forgive us our sins as we forgive those who sin against us.
Lead us not into temptation but deliver us from evil.
For the kingdom, the power, and the glory are yours
now and for ever. Amen.

BLESSING
The Lord bless you and keep you.

The Lord make his face to shine upon and be gracious unto you.

The Lord lift up his countenance upon you and give you peace.

The Lord God almighty, Father, Son and Holy Spirit,

the holy and undivided Trinity, guard you, save you,

and bring you to that heavenly city,

where he lives and reigns for ever and ever.  Amen

HYMN Praise my soul the king of heaven NEH 436/AMR 365 – Praise my soul

1 Praise, my soul, the King of heaven;

To his feet thy tribute bring.

Ransomed, healed, restored, forgiven.

who like me his praise should sing?

Praise him! Praise him!

Praise him! Praise him!

Praise the everlasting King!

2 Praise him for his grace and favour

To our fathers in distress;

Praise him still the same forever,

Slow to chide, and swift to bless.

Praise him! Praise him!

Praise him! Praise him!

Glorious in his faithfulness.

3 Father-like he tends and spares us;

Well our feeble frame he knows;

In his hands he gently bears us,

Rescues us from all our foes.

Praise him! Praise him!

Praise him! Praise him!

Widely as his mercy flows.

4 Angels, help us to adore him;

Ye behold him face to face;

Sun and moon bow down before him,

Dwellers all in time and space.

Praise him! Praise him!

Praise him! Praise him!

Praise with us the God of grace!

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