Lent -- Service Prayers
O God of Promise
Second Sunday of Lent
Call to Worship adapted from Psalm 22
One: You are holy, O God, enthroned on the praises of Israel.
Many: In you our ancestors trusted;
they trusted, and you delivered them.
One: We will tell of your name to our brothers and sisters;
Many: as a congregation we will praise you.
One: All the ends of the earth shall remember and turn to God,
Many: and all the families of the nations shall worship before God.
One: Make your home with us today,
Many: enthroned on the praises of your people.
O Covenant God,
You promised Abraham and Sarah the blessing of family
when it seemed impossible.
You promise to bless us in places in our lives
where we are most vulnerable.
Immerse us today in patience and courage
so that we may trust in you
and follow into a future of justice and peace
that will be more than we can ask or imagine.
In Jesus’ name, AMEN.
Call to Confession
The Holy One calls us to follow into new moments, new movements, new
relationships. But we may be fearful of the risks involved, of the struggles, of the sacrifices.
Let us take a moment and consider the challenges to faithfulness which confront us in our
Litany of Confession
When complacency leads us to keep our lives “as they have always been,” and so
we resist your call to change:
God have mercy.
When anxiety keeps us from making changes that will lead to more justice in our
Christ have mercy.
When fear leads us to close off our lives from those who are different from us
or who are in need:
God have mercy.
Assurance of Grace
Christ calls us to take up our crosses of love, of risk and challenge, and to follow
into a life of blessing for all. He does not leave us alone with that challenge, but promises
forgiving grace and welcome into a community of trust, abundance and hope. Let us give
thanks for the mercy of God, and pass the peace of Christ in community among us.
God promised Abraham and Sarah long ago that they would be exceedingly fruitful
and have many descendants. God gave them unexpected gifts, far beyond anything they could
have imagined. God has given us unexpected gifts, far more than we could imagine, far
more than we could hope. This morning, we return to God a portion of these gifts, trusting
that our lives, and the world, will be changed in unexpected ways through our giving. Let us
gather our gifts together and offer them to God in gratitude, heartfelt commitment, and praise.
Blessing over the Gifts
Change our lives, O God, change the world through these gifts we offer. Open our
hearts to new possibilities and new meaning in ancient promises. Bless our gifts this
morning: we offer them with humble and quiet joy, and with hope that they will make a
difference in this world that you love. Amen.
The God of ancient promises is the God of our present joy and our enduring hope.
As God made promises to Abraham and Sarah long ago, so God has made promises to
you. You are not alone on your long journey of faith, for God is with you. Take heart, be
strong, be a blessing to the world. And may the grace and peace of God the Creator, the Redeemer,
and the Sustainer come upon you this day and remain with you always. Amen.
Additional suggested hymns from The New Century Hymnal:
#466 Unto the Hills We Lift Our Longing Eyes
#459 Come, O Fount of Every Blessing
#340 Somos pueblo que camina (We Are People on a Journey)
#407 How Firm a Foundation
O God of Promise: Prayers for the Second Sunday in Lent, was written by the Rev. Kathryn Matthews Huey and the Rev. Susan A. Blain of the Congregational Vitality and Discipleship Ministry Team.
Copyright 2009 Local Church Ministries, Congregational Vitality and Discipleship Ministry Team, United Church of Christ, 700 Prospect Avenue, Cleveland, OH 44115-1100. Permission granted to reproduce or adapt this material for use in services of worship or church education. All publishing rights reserved.