Opening Prayers

 

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.

 

 

Merciful God,

you have prepared for those who love you

such good things as pass our understanding:

pour into our hearts such love toward you

that we, loving you in all things and above all things,

may obtain your promises,

which exceed all that we can desire;

through Jesus Christ your Son our Lord,

who is alive and reigns with you,

in the unity of the Holy Spirit,

one God, now and for ever.

Amen.

 

Readings

 

Genesis 28.10-19

Read by Paul Snow

 

 

Romans 8.12.-25

Read by Sophie Harvey

 

Gospel Reading

Matthew 13.24-30,36-43

Parable of the Wheat

He put before them another parable: “The kingdom of heaven may be compared to someone who sowed good seed in his field; but while everybody was asleep, an enemy came and sowed weeds among the wheat, and then went away. So when the plants came up and bore grain, then the weeds appeared as well. And the slaves of the householder came and said to him, ‘Master, did you not sow good seed in your field? Where, then, did these weeds come from?’ He answered, ‘An enemy has done this.’

The slaves said to him, ‘Then do you want us to go and gather them?’ But he replied, ‘No; for in gathering the weeds you would uproot the wheat along with them. Let both of them grow together until the harvest; and at harvest time I will tell the reapers, Collect the weeds first and bind them in bundles to be burned, but gather the wheat into my barn.’” Then he left the crowds and went into the house. And his disciples approached him, saying, “Explain to us the parable of the weeds of the field.” He answered, “The one who sows the good seed is the Son of Man; the field is the world, and the good seed are the children of the kingdom; the weeds are the children of the evil one, and the enemy who sowed them is the devil; the harvest is the end of the age, and the reapers are angels. Just as the weeds are collected and burned up with fire, so will it be at the end of the age.The Son of Man will send his angels, and they will collect out of his kingdom all causes of sin and all evildoers, and they will throw them into the furnace of fire, where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth. Then the righteous will shine like the sun in the kingdom of their Father. Let anyone with ears listen!

 

Hymns

 

Teach me, my God and King,
in all things Thee to see,
and what I do in anything,
to do it as for Thee.

To scorn the senses’ sway,
while still to Thee I tend;
in all I do be Thou the Way,
in all be Thou the End.

All may of Thee partake;
nothing so small can be,
but draws, when acted for Thy sake,
greatness and worth from Thee.

If done t’obey Thy laws,
e’en servile labors shine;
hallowed is toil, if this the cause,
the meanest work divine.

 

 

Take my life and let it be
consecrated, Lord, to thee.
Take my moments and my days;
let them flow in endless praise,
let them flow in endless praise.

Take my hands and let them move
at the impulse of thy love.
Take my feet and let them be
swift and beautiful for thee,
swift and beautiful for thee.

Take my voice and let me sing
always, only, for my King.
Take my lips and let them be
filled with messages from thee,
filled with messages from thee.

Take my silver and my gold;
not a mite would I withhold.
Take my intellect and use
every power as thou shalt choose,
every power as thou shalt choose.

Take my will and make it thine;
it shall be no longer mine.
Take my heart it is thine own;
it shall be thy royal throne,
it shall be thy royal throne.

Take my love; my Lord, I pour
at thy feet its treasure store.
Take myself, and I will be
ever, only, all for thee,
ever, only, all for thee.

Blessed assurance, Jesus is mine!
O what a foretaste of glory divine!
Heir of salvation, purchase of God,
born of his Spirit, washed in his blood.

Refrain:
This is my story, this is my song,
praising my Savior, all the day long;
this is my story, this is my song,
praising my Savior all the day long.

Perfect submission, perfect delight,
visions of rapture now burst on my sight;
angels descending, bring from above
echoes of mercy, whispers of love. [Refrain]

Perfect submission, all is at rest,
I in my Savior am happy and blest,
watching and waiting, looking above,
filled with his goodness, lost in his love. [Refrain]

 

 

Reflection

From Rev Julia Porter-Pryce

The earliest stories of human journeys with God all begin with promises. Today we heard the Old Testament story of Jacob on the run. He exchanged his older brother Esau’s birthright for a bowl of lentil soup and tricked his blind old father, Isaac, into bestowing on him the blessing that should have been his brother’s. He stops to sleep in a place that has no name. And as he sleeps, he dreams. He dreams of a ladder connecting earth and heaven with angels ascending and descending and he dreams of God standing beside him and speaking – ‘Know that I am with you and will keep you wherever you go, and will bring you back to this land; for I will not leave you until I have done what I have promised you’. God promises to give to Jacob the land on which he lies, offspring as widespread as the dust of the earth, blessings throughout time and Jacob is assured of the protection and presence of God until these promises have been fulfilled.

 

The encounter with God occurs in a place where Jacob would not have expected a religious experience, at a time when coming face to face with God could not have been furthest from his mind. Jacob in his sleep is helpless to conjure up the meeting. It is entirely of God’s making. And so it is that God often comes to us when we least expect. God often speaks to us in dreams, when we let go of our fears and our guilt.

 

God commits to this empty-handed fugitive. God will not abandon Jacob. God will accompany him. It is the promise that will become incarnate in Jesus of Nazareth, Emmanuel – God-with-us. It is the final promise of Jesus to his disciples at the end of Matthew’s gospel ‘Remember I am with you always, to the end of the age’.

 

 

Intercessions

From Margaret Glover

Crucifix

 

Dear Lord, you know our thoughts before they even take form as words or become actions. Guide us to shape these prayers so that they speak for us all as one at this time of separation and uncertainty. And help us to listen and watch for your loving response.

Lord in your mercy,

Hear our prayer.

We give you thanks for the bountiful diversity of your creation. Show us the way to care for these precious gifts.

Lord in your mercy,

Hear our prayer.

We offer you our prayers for the leaders of this world and ask that you inspire them with your justice.

In silence we pray for good leadership in our own communities.

Lord in your mercy,

Hear our prayer.

We ask for your wisdom in the work of our bishops, priests and lay leaders as they re-open our sacred spaces and seek to bring us back together in communal worship. Direct their discernment towards your courage and away from human confusion.

Lord in your mercy,

Hear our prayer.

We ask your blessings for those who suffer in body, mind or spirit and for those who tend and heal them.

In silence we pray for those in need of God’s special care.

 Lord in your mercy,

Hear our prayer.

 We offer you our prayers for the people who continue to suffer most in these difficult times. We ask that you strengthen us for service and guide us towards compassion.

Lord in your mercy,

Hear our prayer.

We remember those who have died. We hold in our hearts those dear to us and also those who died alone, far from family and friends.

Rest eternal grant unto them, O Lord,

And may light perpetual shine upon them.

We gather our prayers and offer them to you as one, in faith.

Merciful Father, accept these prayers for the sake of your son, our saviour, Jesus Christ.

Amen.

 

Closing Prayers

meadow-of-lavender-nature-composition-selective-royalty-free-image-539988160-1533825462

God of our pilgrimage,

you have led us to the living water:

refresh and sustain us

as we go forward on our journey,

in the name of Jesus Christ our Lord.

Amen.

 

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