Reflection on why we tell some of the same stories over and over again…
Lord, who in the Passion mystery established the new covenant of reconciliation: Grant that all who have been reborn into the fellowship of Christ’s Body may show forth in their lives what they profess by their faith; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, on God, for ever and ever. Amen.
In keeping with Governor Northam and Bishop Lewis, we will not be gathering in-person so long as there is a stay-at-home order. Which, as of today, is at least until June 10th. The cases of COVID-19 continue to rise in our community and across the country so please, as much as is possible, maintain social distancing, excellent hygiene, and don’t be afraid to ask for help.
Until we are back together in person, online giving can be made on the About page on the church website, cokesburyumc.church which will be linked in the video description for live worship as well as checks through the mail.
We’ve been sending out regular emails from the church about opportunities for online Bible Studies, devotionals, prayer requests, and updates on our local community. If you are not receiving those emails, and would like to, please send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org
Lord, by the resurrection of your Son Jesus Christ on the first day of the week, you conquered sin, put death to death, and gave us the hope of everlasting life: Redeem all our days by this, your victory; forgive us our sins, banish our fears, make us bold to praise you and to do your will; and
give us the strength to face each day with the knowledge that the story of Jesus has turned the world upside down, and there ain’t nothing we can do about it…
And as you taught us, so now we 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 trespasses as we forgive those who trespass against us. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil. For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory forever. Amen.
Scripture: Acts 2.14a, 22-32
But Peter, standing with the eleven, raised his voice and addressed them, “You that are Israelites, listen to what I have to say: Jesus of Nazareth, a man attested to you by God with deeds of power, wonders, and signs that God did through him among you, as you yourselves know – this man, handed over to you according to the definite plan and foreknowledge of God, you crucified and killed by the hands of those outside the law. But God raised him up, having freed him from death, because it was impossible for him to be held in its power. For David says concerning him, ‘I saw the Lord always before me, for he is at my right hand so that I will not be shaken; therefore my heart was glad, and my tongue rejoiced; moreover my flesh will live in hope. For you will not abandon my soul to Hades, or let your Holy One experience corruption. You have made known to me the ways of life; you will make me full of gladness with your presence.’ “Fellow Israelites, I may say to you confidently of our ancestor David that he both died and was buried, and his tomb is with us to this day. Since he was a prophet, he knew that God had sworn with an oath to him that he would put one of his descendants on his throne. Foreseeing this, David spoke of the resurrection of the Messiah, saying, ‘He was not abandoned to Hades, nor did his flesh experience corruption.’ This Jesus God raised up, and of that all of us are witnesses.”
Hymn 156 – I Love to Tell the Story
V1. I love to tell the story of unseen things above;
Of Jesus and his glory, of Jesus and his love.
I love to tell the story, because I know ’tis true;
It satisfies my longings as nothing else can do.
I love to tell the story, ’twill be my theme in glory, to tell the old, old, story of Jesus and his love.
V2. I love to tell the story; more wonderful it seems;
Than all the golden fancies of all our golden dreams.
I love to tell the story, it did so much for me;
And that is just the reason I tell it now to thee.
V3. I love to tell the story; ’tis pleasant to repeat
What seems, each time I tell it, more wonderfully sweet.
I love to tell the story, for some have never heard
The message of salvation from God’s own holy Word.
V4. I love to tell the story, for those who know it best
Seem hungering and thirsting to hear it like the rest.
And when, in scenes of glory, I sing the new, new song,
’Twill be the old, old, story that I have loved so long.
Sermon: A Sermon On A Sermon
Lord, in the mystery of dying and rising with Christ you have upended the world and brought life, new life, to your church. Breathe upon us again with your Spirit and give new life to your people, be with those who are not able to be with their families and friends this day, give us the strength and the wisdom to be the kind of people you’ve called us to be, and give us the hope to rejoice knowing that death has been defeated in you. Amen.
Offering – Reminder for online giving, through the mail, or the drop slot at the church.
I believe in God the Father Almighty, maker of heaven and earth; And in Jesus Christ his only son our Lord: who was conceived by the Holy Spirit, born of the Virgin Mary, suffered under Pontius Pilate, was crucified, dead, and buried; the third day he rose from the dead; he ascended into heaven, and sitteth at the right hand of God the Father Almighty; from thence he shall come to judge the quick and the dead. I believe in the Holy Spirit, the holy catholic church, the communion of saints, the forgiveness of sins, the resurrection of the body, and the life everlasting. Amen.
I Love My Church Because…
We have a habit in our house of expressing that for which we are grateful when we gather at the dinner table. We will usually say a prayer, often led by our son, and then we take time to go around and share either something about our day or something in general that we want to thank God for.
With every passing week that we cannot gather together in this place, I have been mindful of how much I just miss the little things of this church. Similarly, this time apart has given me the opportunity to reflect on what I love about the church – this particular church and every other church that has shaped me into who I am.
So, this week, knowing that it won’t earn us anything in the way of salvation, I encourage each of you to write down what you love about the church. Perhaps you’re someone who calls this church home, or you have your own church on the other side of the country, it doesn’t matter – Just put down a few thoughts regarding what you love about the church. You can just create a simple list and put it up on your refrigerator, or you can email it to me, or type it in the comment section, or post it on social media. This is a time during which we can not only reflect on what we love, but also share that love with other people.
And I’ll go first, and I’ll put this up on Facebook and Twitter later, I love my church because it is a regular reminder that God’s grace is greater than my sin, whether its the hymns we sing together, the bread and cup that we offer each other, or the grace that is given me to people like you, it has been the difference that has made all the difference in the world.
Blessing and Benediction