Tuesday, January 17, 2023

Liturgy: The Beatitudes - Matthew 5:1-20 (January 22, 2023)

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Call to Worship

Leader: You are the salt of the earth!
People: We are called to season the earth with the love of God.
Leader: You are the light of the world!
People: We come so that our light may be made brighter by the Holy Spirit.
Leader: Share your salt and let your light shine so that all people can see your good works and praise our Father in heaven. The Lord be with you!
People: [Respond with indicated gesture:] And also with you!
Leader: Let us worship the Lord.

Call to Confession

Leader: Jesus warns that our righteousness must exceed that of the scribes and Pharisees if we hope to enter the kindom of heaven. We recognized our woeful failure to meet this divine standard. But we also know that repentance is the first step towards righteousness, so we humbly come before God, prepared to confess all of our wrongdoing and confident in the knowledge that God’s mercy can conquer even our worst sins. Let us pray.

Unison Prayer of Confession

People: God of blessing, Jesus teaches that divine happiness can be found in such unexpected places as grief, humility, righteous hunger, and persecution for Jesus’ sake. Yet we refuse to hear your Word, and we seek happiness elsewhere: in distraction, in control, in apathy, and in denying your holy name. You call us to be the light of the world, vulnerable and extravagant in our selflessness, but we hide our light away, safe and comfortable under a basket of self-preservation. Forgive us, Lord; open our ears and our hearts to your Word, and help us to seek true happiness in you. In your mercy, hear our prayer…[Silent prayers of personal forgiveness]

Declaration of Forgiveness

Leader: “Happy are those who have pure hearts, because they will see God.” Our hearts do not become pure through our own righteousness, but through God’s grace, which offers mercy for all who seek it. Having confessed our sin to the Lord, hear this Good News: in Jesus Christ, we are forgiven. Thanks be to God!

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