1 Samuel 1:4-20
Hannah grieves her inability to conceive, and the mockery of Elkanah’s other wife, Peninnah, so when the family goes to the temple she prays for a child. After Eli accuses her of being drunk, she explains that she is grieving and he blesses her. Following this, she falls pregnant and gives birth to Samuel.

Psalm 16
A Psalm in praise of God’s protection and blessing, God’s instruction and guidance, God’s presence and God’s ways of life.
(alternate reading is 1 Samuel 2:1-10, Hannah’s song, much like the Magnificat)

Hebrews 10:11-14, (15-18), 19-25
Jesus offered the perfect once-for-all sacrifice and then sat down at God’s right hand. He perfected God’s people, and now we can enter God’s presence with confidence because of our faith, the cleansing of God, and our high priest in God’s house. In response we are to hold on to our hope, and motivate each other to acts of love and goodness.

Mark 13:1-8
As they leave the temple, Jesus’ disciples are awed by the size and beauty of the building, but Jesus predicts that it will be destroyed. When the disciples ask for a sign, Jesus warns them about false messiahs who will come, reports of war, earthquakes, and famines. But, these, he explains, are just the beginnings of the end.
(Bible readings summary by John van de Laar, Sacredise)
The readings do not have a great deal of natural overlap, though the theme of waiting seems to be present – waiting for a baby, waiting in hope of life after death, waiting for the defeat of God’s enemies and waiting for the end of Jerusalem and the unfolding future.

Readings in A4 landscape folded format ready to print: Pilgrim COCU66B.Readings.2018

Church of Scotland liturgy resources
Singing from the Lectionary
You call that church music? (music suggestions from a wide variety of sources)

Components of worship (links to resources on this website)
Acknowledgement of Land
Prayer of thanksgiving
Prayer of confession/prayers of who we are
Words of Assurance
Prayer for Illumination
Readings (see above)
Prayers for others
Lord’s Prayer
Prayer of Dedication
Benediction and sending out
(Communion Hymns)

Additional worship resources

Call to Worship (inspired by Hebrews 10:19-22)
We gather together to worship,
knowing that God is already here among us;
knowing that there is nothing that separates us
from the presence of God.
Wherever we are, wherever we go, God is near.
So let us enter into this service of worship
with confidence and hope,
knowing that God is already with us,
and that God stands eager to meet us
and bless us with love.
(Source: re-worship)

Call to worship (Psalm 16)
Come, bless the Lord,
in whom we find our refuge and safety.
You are our God;
all the good things come from you alone.
Come, bless the Lord,
who gives us a rich inheritance,
and surrounds us with abundance.
You are our God;
our lives are in your hands.
Come, bless the Lord,
who guides us on the path to eternal life,
whose presence strengthens and sustains us.
You are our God;
we will not be shaken.
Let’s worship God together!
(Source: re-worship)Prayer of approach
“O give thanks to the Lord for He is good; for His mercy endures for ever.” Psalm 118:29
Our gracious God,
we thank you that we can gather together to worship you,
that though you call us personally to the life of faith
you never call us to walk alone.
We bless you for the church,
for the family of faith
in all its rich diversity of age, gender, ethnicity and experience.
For all that is has meant to us in the past
and still means to us now.
We give you thanks
for every time we have come here cast down and discouraged
and you came to us and put fresh heart into us.
For every time we came here struggling with temptation
and found here the strength to choose the right road.
For every time we came here with a sore heart
and found your comfort.
Forgive us when we are demanding of others and not supportive
when we make life harder for others rather than easier
when we grumble rather than encourage
when we are selfish rather than thoughtful.
We gather with expectancy this morning
believing that, as we gather in Christ’s name,
You are present with us by your Spirit,
ready to meet with us
to pardon our failures
to strengthen our resolve
and to guide us in the coming week.
Help us to serve as our forebears did.
Give to us fresh vision for the challenges we face.
Keep us faithful to the gospel entrusted to us
and make us ever aware of the needs in our world.
May Jesus, the same yesterday, today and for ever,
be at the heart of our worship
and may all we do be to your glory
for his name’s sake. Amen
(Source: Rev Colin Sinclair, Church of Scotland)

Prayer of dedication for the offering
Loving God, take these offerings
that we bring to you in this and other ways.
Help us always to have a generous heart
a willing hand to help where there is need
lips ready to declare your praise
and a spirit always wanting to think the best of others.
We dedicate this offering and our lives
in Jesus’ name. Amen
(Source: Rev Colin Sinclair, Church of Scotland)

Prayer of Intercession: “Keeping on keeping on”
O God, help us all to keep on
when everything is making us desire to give up.
Help those who are tired, to keep on.
Grant to them strength to walk that last long mile
when they think they can’t take another step.
Help those people for whom nothing seems to happen, to keep on
– even when their work seems to make no difference.
At such a time help them to do what they are called to do
and leave the outcome to you.
Help those who have failed, to keep on.
No matter how often they have tried, help them still to try again.
Help those for whom no-one seems to care, to keep on
– when their work is unappreciated and not even noticed.
Help those who are criticised, to keep on –
even if that criticism is unjust and unfair.
Help them to go on when they are misunderstood,
even when that misunderstanding is perverse and unfair.
Help those whose hopes are disappointed and whose dreams are dead, to keep on.
At such a time help them to remember
that, even if in this world the dream is out of reach
that this life is not the only life there is.
Help those whose hearts are sore, to keep on.
At such a time help them find comfort for sorrow in the service of others.
Grant that the work of their hands
may soothe the sorrow of their hearts.
Grant to all the self-respect that will never admit defeat.
Grant to all the sense of duty from which they will not be led astray.
Grant to all that they would know not only the wounds but also peace in the battle.
Grant to all that even in the darkest hour eternal glory will light their way.
So grant that following Jesus,
who for the joy that was set before him, endured the cross,
despising the shame, that we all might endure to the end and so be saved.
We ask this for Your love’s sake. Amen
(Source: Rev Colin Sinclair, Church of Scotland)

God’s blessing be upon us
as we leave and return changed to our homes.
May we strengthen and encourage one another
in our shared vision.
And may the blessing of our adventurous Creator God go with us.
And may the blessing of the Son,
who showed us how to live, re-shape us.
And may the blessing of the dancing Spirit
joyfully enable us in our renewed living. Amen.
(Source: Hope in God’s Future: Christian Discipleship in the Context of Climate Change Report & Study Guide, Methodist Publishing 2009. Posted on the Third Space website)

Parting benediction: Together we shall go on
In the loving of neighbour
and the sharing of love
together we shall go on
In the celebration of life
and the sharing of that life together
together we shall go on
In the caring of the earth
and the sharing of her harvest
together we shall go on
In the variety of people
and the sharing of our talents
together we shall go on
In the laughter we make
and the sharing of the journey
together we shall go on
In the love of this community
and the sharing of our faith
together we shall go on
(Source: Roddy Hamilton, Listening to the Stones)

As you go from here, remember:
God is always with you.
No matter what you face,
no matters what trials or hardships come your way,
God is right beside you,
guiding and directing your path.
So do not live in fear, but in joy,
celebrating God’s presence
and singing God’s praise.
(Source: re-worship)

Only the beginning (Mark 13:1-8)
many will come to deceive:
watch so to recognise me.
many will fight and attack:
stay true to my way of peace.
many will shake your foundations:
hold fast to what I have taught you.
many will be the temptations:
endure the birth pangs, endure.
many will offer the world:
but look to the kin-dom of God.
(could conclude with a triune blessing…..)
(Source: Sarah Angew, Pray the Story)

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Rev Sandy Boyce is a Uniting Church in Australia Minister (Deacon). This blog may be a help to people planning worship services.
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