WE HAVE PAUSED CORPORATE WORSHIP DUE TO COVID-19 AND WILL RESUME NOVEMBER 29, 2020.
First Christian Church, Grand Junction – Praising God, Changing Lives!

October 4, 2020 At-Home Worship Plan

27th Sunday of Ordinary Time 2020
At-Home Worship Plan
First Christian Church, Grand Junction
October 4, 2020

PREPARATION

  • Communion Elements
  • A computer/tablet/phone for looking up the worshipful songs.  You could also use a hymnal and an instrument.
  • YOUTUBE Sermon and Hymns – A video of Pastor Brad preaching will be on the First Christian Church Youtube site.  Visit the First Christian Church Grand Junction Colorado YouTube Channel to find the playlists for the sermon and the hymns for the day.  The playlists of the videos for each are also accessible from our website.

ORDER OF WORSHIP

Song of Praise

(You can look up the lyrics/music in a hymnal or on hymnary.org)

  • “O Worship the King” #17

Invocation

God of Grace,

Out of your great love for people, you sent us your Son, a Messiah, a Savior, to offer forgiveness to wayward, sinful people like us.   You sent your Son to communicate the gospel message to us…and to invite us to respond by entering into your eternal kingdom now and always.  As we worship you this day, as we celebrate and revel in your goodness and grace, grant that we will become strengthened by our encounter with you to continue Jesus’ ministry of communicating and sharing your grace with others.  We pray this in the name of Jesus, who taught us to pray…

Our Father, who art in heaven,
Hallowed be thy name.
Thy kingdom come,
Thy will be done
On earth as it is in heaven.
Give us this day our daily bread,
And forgive us our debts,
As we forgive our debtors.
Lead us, not into temptation,
But deliver us from evil.
For thine is the kingdom,
And the power, and the glory
Forever.  Amen.

 

Morning Prayer

(Share joys and concerns, then have someone pray the following prayer or one of your own.)

God whose Kingdom is better than anything and everything else, in gratitude and great joy we thank and praise you for your continued work to transform this world into your kingdom here on earth.  We thank you for offering us the opportunity to choose and experience life over death.  We thank and praise you for making it possible for us to both experience the life of your kingdom and to share the message of your kingdom with others. 

As we celebrate the grace that led you to send Jesus into this world, help us to remember now and always the joys made possible by your decision to offer life when you could have commanded death.  And help us, each time we experience joy to seek and discover how our joy is the result of your grace.  Help us each time we experience joys like those mentioned in this service of worship.

Even as we give thanks for the joys you make possible, we know there are people who struggle to find joy, people who struggle to know your work and your love for us, and so we ask also for your strength to entrust the needs of this world and its inhabitants to you.  We entrust to your care this day:

  • All who are on our congregation’s prayer list, and all who have been mentioned by name in our worship;
  • All who suffer from abuse or oppression;
  • All who struggle with anxiety or distress;
  • All who suffer from lack of food, water, shelter, or loving relationships;
  • All who suffer from injury or illness;
  • All who mourn or grieve;
  • All who struggle with quarantines and lockdowns, as well as those whose bodies are being ravaged by COVID-19;
  • All who struggle in their efforts to follow Jesus;
  • All who fear the power of your outpoured Spirit;
  • All who refuse to seek you;
  • For all who have need but who go unnamed;

For all who have need of your intervention, O God, grant them what you know they need; respond to these prayers in the way you see as being best, the way that will turn shouts of pain and suffering into shouts of joy, the way that will bring glory to your name.

God of grace, help us now, in this moment, help us always, to celebrate and be transformed by the new and eternal life you offer through Jesus.

We pray, as we live, through Jesus the risen one, and in the power of the Holy Spirit…Amen.

Scripture and Message (Sermon)

Read the scripture passages from pastor Brad’s sermon and then read, listen to, or watch (on YouTube) the sermon.  The text and audio of the sermon – as well as a video – can be found on our congregation’s website at gjdisciples.org under the “Sermons” tab.

Offering

Invitation –  “The kingdom of heaven is like treasure hidden in a field, which someone found and hid; then in his joy he goes and sells all that he has and buys that field.”  So many times when Jesus talked about God’s kingdom, he talked about it as something that is so much better than anything else.  But he also made it pretty clear that people would struggle to enter into God’s kingdom as long as they held onto ANYthing else; you have to let go of everything else to enter.  Each week, as I consider what to say to you about giving to God, I wonder how to help and encourage you to let go of the stuff that’s holding you back from entering into and experiencing God’s kingdom.  Like the rich young man who once approached Jesus and did everything ELSE God had commanded of him, only you can know what you’re holding onto that’s preventing you from fully giving in to God.  I encourage you to prayerfully consider how you can give of whatever that is and return it to God for God’s purposes…so that you might fully enter into God’s kingdom.  Let’s be in the spirit of Christian giving.

Response.  If you feel called to respond by making a monetary gift to continue God’s work through FCCGJ, you can do so right now in one of three ways:

    1. Write a check to First Christian Church and mail it to FCCGJ, 1326 N. 1st Street, Grand Junction, CO 81501.
    2. On your cellphone, text GIVE2FCCGJ (plus the dollar amount you want to give) to 73256.  For example, if you want to offer $50, text GIVE2FCCGJ $50 to 73256.
    3. Via the internet on your computer, go to our congregation’s website at gjdisciples.org, click “online giving” on the top menu bar, and then click on the link under the second bullet point to make an online contribution.

Offering Prayer.  Say a prayer asking for God’s blessing upon whatever gift/commitment you made to God, as well as all the other commitments Jesus’ followers are making this morning.

Communion

Invitation to Communion:  “For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.”  The Apostle Paul communicated a summary of the gospel in these words.  For those of you who learn by participating in an action instead of receiving words, Jesus offers this Communion meal as another way to transmit – and receive – the gospel message.  This bread and this cup remind us of God’s grace.  This bread and this cup help us go through the physical motions Jesus went through on that night so long ago, the physical motions of giving of the self for others, the physical motions required for entrance into God’s kingdom.  God’s gospel of grace is a gospel of NOT doing all we are free to do for ourselves but INSTEAD choosing to do for others.  And God’s kingdom is the place where people are doing just that.

Communion Hymn – “Take Our Bread” #413

Prayer – God who offers us new life through grace, God who offers us entrance into your kingdom, thank you for this meal that is both a reminder of your grace and an example of the actions by which we might enter into your kingdom.  Through it, grant us the strength to focus on Jesus’ primary purpose that is our primary purpose.  I pray these things in the name of Jesus and by the power of your Holy Spirit, Amen.

 Words of Institution:  We remember that on the night Jesus was to be betrayed, he sat around a table with his disciples and shared a meal.  While they were eating, Jesus took a loaf of bread and, after giving thanks, broke it and gave it to them, saying, “Take, eat.  This is my body, broken for you.”  In the same way, Jesus took a cup, and after blessing it, said, “This is the new covenant in my blood, which is poured out for many for the forgiveness of sins.  Do this in remembrance of me.”

Partake of the bread and cup in your own time.

Closing Song

“Just As I Am, Without One Plea” #339

Closing Prayer/Benediction

Go now as the people of God,
Empowered by the Holy Spirit
And given peace by God’s risen Son,
That you may continue Jesus’ primary purpose
Of communicating the gospel message and help
Usher in God’s kingdom here on earth.
Amen.