Midday Prayer; Wednesday 27th May
Alternative Worship at home. 24th May 2020
This Sunday is the Sunday after the Ascension of Jesus. We join the disciples as they stay together united in prayer and fellowship waiting for the promised Holy Spirit which we celebrate next Sunday (Pentecost).
Alleluia Christ is Risen
He is risen indeed, Alleluia!
If you’d like to begin with hymns there is a selection on our website.
Let us pray
Readings: Psalm 68: 1-10,32-35
John 17: 1-17.
In today’s Psalm It had been easy for the Israelites to forget the past and to boast of their own achievements, as if by their own power and ingenuity they had survived the many hazardous periods of their story. Therefore, in verses 32 to 35 the psalmist is looking back down the corridors of time and urging his people to acknowledge God’s constant provision and protection. If these verses had been read during public worship to the accompaniment of harps and rams’ horns, they would have struck a deep chord in the hearts of the worshippers.
In John’s Gospel, In the ‘High Priestly Prayer’, Jesus shares with His Father the burden He is carrying as He faces Gethsemane betrayal and trial, crucifixion and then resurrection and ascension. All of this is implicit in John 17. Verses 1 to 3 summarise what we might call Jesus’ ‘job description’—and what an amazing task Jesus had been entrusted to undertake. Jesus refers explicitly to His presence with God prior to incarnation: ‘Father, glorify me in your own presence with the glory that I had in your presence before the world existed.’
Jesus then commits His followers to the Father’s care and keeping. All has been of God, even the teaching that has been given had been first given to Jesus from the Father, before He had passed it on to His beloved disciples (see John 8:28-29.) So, what is Jesus asking the Father to do? Two things are mentioned. First, that God would preserve them: ‘protect them in Your name’; second, this is in order that they may be always united: ‘that they may be one, as we are one’. Jesus also anticipates His resurrection and ascension when He says, ‘And now I am no longer in the world.’
Perhaps it may be a rebuke to some of us that Jesus’ prayer contains only two requests. It is mostly an unburdening of His heart in His Father’s presence. That is not to say that you and I should not bring many requests to our heavenly Father. Rather is to question whether we spend enough time in our praying sharing the burdens and desires of our hearts with our heavenly Father. The implicit intimacy between the Father and the Son is perhaps an example for us in our personal devotions. ‘Shopping list’ prayers are easy and cost us very little. Opening our hearts to God is much more demanding – and rewarding!
Look after yourselves!
Prayer time 🙏🏻 Pray in the way that is most natural to you.
You could include prayers for the world, the church, our community, those who are struggling.
Take some time to reflect on this last week, ask God to guide you into next week. Be assured of his presence with you, his forgiveness, his hope, his peace, his love.
End with the Lords Prayer: Our father….Amen.
May the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit be with us all, now and evermore. Amen.
Stay at home in peace to love & serve the Lord. Look after yourselves! Amen
As we can’t have tea or coffee following the service together, instead why not phone, email or text someone we haven’t spoken to or seen. May I suggest we try and make this some thing we try to do after each service. It would be a way to keep in touch with each other. God Bless!
Please help us to compile our next newsletter by sending your good news stories and any celebrations that happened recently.
Please join in the daily online midday prayers this coming week if possible as we open our hearts in prayer, to pray ‘thy kingdom come’. 10 days of prayer; see Bihop Libby's video below and the following video put together by Paul for Churches Together.
From Bishop Libby.......
From Rev'd Tim Crone (Co Superintendent; Sheffield Methodist Circuit)