August 16, 2020: “The Lord is Our Good Shepherd”

Preparing for Worship

Psalm 23 is one of the best-loved portions of Scripture, and it gives us one of the Bible’s most compelling images of God: as a shepherd caring for their sheep. The Gospel of John picks up on this image, calling Jesus “the Good Shepherd” who provides for and protects his followers, his beloved sheep.

Today let’s reflect on this Psalm and this comforting image of God together. Let’s worship the God who cares for us, who provides for us and watches over us.

Let’s look to Jesus our Good Shepherd.

Call to Worship

Dianne H. welcomes us and calls us to worship together:

Songs of Praise

Join in singing HWB 16 God is Here Among Us, accompanied by Dianne H. and Michael P. You can use the hymn book or follow the lyrics below.

God is here among us; let us all adore him,
and with awe appear before him.
God is here within us; soul, in silence fear him,
humbly, fervently draw near him.
Now his own who have known God in worship
lowly yield their spirits wholly.

Come, abide within me; let my soul, like Mary, 
be thine earthly sanctuary.
Come, indwelling Spirit, with transfigured splendor;
love and honour will I render. 
Where I go here below, let me bow before thee,
know thee, and adore thee.

Gladly we surrender earth’s deceitful treasures,
pride of life, and sinful pleasures.
Gladly, Lord, we offer thine to be forever,
soul and life and each endeavour.
Thou alone shalt be known Lord of all our being,
life’s true way decreeing.

Let’s continue singing with HWB 71 Joyful, Joyful, We Adore Thee, accompanied by Dianne H. and Michael P. You can use the songbook or follow the lyrics below.

Joyful, joyful, we adore thee, God of glory, Lord of love.
Hearts unfold like flow’rs before thee, praising thee their sun above.
Melt the clouds of sin and sadness; drive the dark of doubt away.
Giver of immortal gladness, fill us with the light of day!

All thy works with joy surround thee, earth and heav’n reflect thy rays,
stars and angels sing around thee, center of unbroken praise.
Field and forest, vale and mountain, blooming meadow, flashing sea,
chanting bird and flowing fountain, call us to rejoice in thee.

Thou art giving and forgiving, ever blessing, ever bless’d,
well-spring of the joy of living, ocean-depth of happy rest!
Thou our Father, Christ our brother, all who live in love are thine.
Teach us how to love each other, lift us to the joy divine.

Mortals, join the mighty chorus which the morning stars began.
Love divine is reigning o’er us, leading us with mercy’s hand.
Ever singing, march we onward, victors in the midst of strife.
Joyful music lifts us sunward in the triumph song of life!

Offering

Please continue this act of worship in support of the church’s ongoing ministries even though we are not meeting in person, and even during the summer months. You can mail a cheque to the church office. You can contact the church office or Randy S. and he will come pick it up. Also, you can donate as a bill payment if you have an Access Credit Union account, either in person at the credit union or online. For online giving in this way, please see the information here.

Community Life & Prayer

For announcements related to our church community, please see the eBulletin emailed to those on the church email list. You can also stay updated by checking the church Facebook page and this website.

This week in our prayers we especially remember:

  • Those among us travelling during these final weeks of summer, that we would be safe in our travels and find enjoyment on the journey, in our destinations, and in our arrival back home.
  • Those affected by the COVID-19 pandemic, both directly and indirectly, both locally and around the world. May God bring protection, provision, and healing to those most in need.
  • Those among us facing significant personal challenges, both concerns shared publicly and burdens borne privately. Let us “weep with those who weep” (Rom. 12:15) and “cast all our burdens upon the Lord, for God cares for us” (1 Pet. 5:7).
  • Those among us with special reasons to rejoice. Let us “rejoice with those who rejoice” (Rom. 12:15), and may we all experience bright moments of joy in these uncertain times.
  • May we persevere in the way of Jesus, putting into practice the faith, hope, and love of Jesus. “Faith, hope, and love abide, these three; and the greatest of these is love” (1 Cor. 13:13).

Dianne H. offers this prayer for us today:

Prayer Song

Continue in prayer as we sing HWB 352 Gentle Shepherd, Come and Lead Us, accompanied by Loretta T. and Michael P. You can use the songbook or follow along below.

Gentle Shepherd, come and lead us
For we need you to help us find our way
Gentle Shepherd, come and feed us
For we need your strength from day to day

There’s no other we can turn to
Who can help us face another day
Gentle Shepherd, come and lead us
For we need you to help us find our way

Scripture Reading

Our Scripture reading this morning is Psalm 23, read for us by Ron F. As we listen to our Scripture reading, and as we reflect on it together in our children’s focus and meditation, may we have ears to hear what the Spirit is saying to us as a church.

Children’s Focus

Robyn L. shares this for the young (or the young at heart!) among us:

Meditation

Ron F. shares this meditation on Psalm 23 for us today:

Moment of Reflection

Spend a few moments reflecting on our Scripture text and its interpretation among us. The good news of God has been proclaimed among us this morning.

  • How have you heard God’s good news for you? for others in your life? for our world?
  • What will you do this week to live out God’s good news?

Song of Response

Listen or sing along to HWB 327 Great is Thy Faithfulness, accompanied by Irene S. and Michael P. You may use the songbook or follow along with the lyrics below.

Great is thy faithfulness, O God my Father.
There is no shadow of turning with thee.
Thou changest not, thy compassions, they fail not.
As thou hast been thou forever wilt be.

Great is thy faithfulness! Great is thy faithfulness! 
Morning by morning new mercies I see.
All I have needed thy hand hath provided.
Great is thy faithfulness! Lord, unto me!

Summer and winter, and springtime and harvest,
sun, moon, and stars in their courses above,
join with all nature in manifold witness
to thy great faithfulness, mercy, and love.

Pardon for sin and a peace that endureth,
thine own dear presence to cheer and to guide,
strength for today and bright hope for tomorrow;
blessings all mine, with ten thousand beside!

Benediction

Dianne H. offers this benediction for us as we leave this time of worship together:

Sending Song

Join in singing STJ 49 Rain Down, accompanied by Loretta T. and Michael P.  You can use the songbook or follow the lyrics below.

Rain down, rain down, rain down your love on your people.
Rain down, rain down, rain down your love, God of life.

Faithful and true is the word of our God.
All of God’s works are so worthy of trust.
God’s mercy falls on the just and the right;
full of God’s love is the earth.

We who revere and find hope in our God
live in the kindness and joy of God’s wing.
God will protect us from darkness and death;
God will not leave us to starve.

God of creation, we long for your truth;
you are the water of life that we thirst.
Grant that your love and your peace touch our hearts,
all of our hope lies in you.

In the Week Ahead

Check the church website and church Facebook page regularly for resources for staying connected and for spiritual growth during this time. Grace and peace to you this week!

Songs: God is Here Among Us by Gerhard Tersteegen (Public); Joyful, Joyful, We Adore Thee by Ludwig van Beethoven, Henry van Dyke (Public); Gentle Shepherd, Come and Lead Us by Gloria Gaither, William J. Gaither (© 1974 William J. Gaither); Great is Thy Faithfulness by Thomas O. Chisholm, William M. Runyan (© 1951 Hope Publishing Co.); Rain Down by Jaime Cortez (© 1992 Jaime Cortez, OCP Publications)
CCLI Streaming License 20348932 / One License Streaming License A-714686

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