Welcome to ICYMI Worship! ICYMI stands for In Case You Missed It; our ICYMI series gives a brief snapshot of worship each week so that you can worship in your home, on the road, or wherever life takes you.
At Cross of Christ, our basic worship order is based on worship patterns from Hebrew traditions and biblical accounts of the earliest Christians: We GATHER with songs and prayer, We HEAR God’s word, We SHARE a meal of bread and wine, We are SENT into the world to love and serve. Let us know how this format works for you.
TODAY IS THE THIRD SUNDAY OF ADVENT
The presence of the Lord “in your midst” in the wonder of the holy supper is cause for singing. The nearness of the Lord in prayer, in every circumstance, is cause for rejoicing. The coming of one “more powerful” than John, even with his winnowing fork in his hand, is good news—and cause for exultation—for us who are being saved. Great joy is the tone for the third Sunday of Advent.
ADVENT READING AND CANDLE LIGHTING
Make Your Heart a Home for Honesty
This second Sunday in Advent, the prophet Zephaniah calls God’s
people to rejoice.
To exalt with all their heart.
To sing loudly and joyfully.
For God is a God of forgiveness.
God listens to the honest confessions of a contrite heart.
God listens – and forgives.
Home is meant to be a place of honesty.
A place where all are heard.
A place where all are valued.
A place where all are loved – no strings attached.
Learning integrity at home, we practice it in the world.
This is another way we bear witness to our faith.
By being trustworthy.
By treating all people fairly.
But conducting ourselves in ways that are above reproach.
As we light the third candle of Advent – representing honesty –
let us commit ourselves to the causes of integrity, justice, and
fairness in all we way and do, at home and everywhere.
O God, make our hearts a home for honesty. Amen.
“Come, Thou Long Expected Jesus”
PRAYER OF THE DAY
Heavenly Father, you sent your Son from heaven to earth that he might open the way for us to come home to you. Open our hearts, our minds, our ears, and our souls, that the Incarnate Word might dwell in us as we prepare to celebrate again his first Advent, and as we look forward with eyes of faith for him to come again. This we pray in the name of Christ, our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever. Amen.
THIS WEEK’S READINGS
Zephaniah 3:14-20 The prophet Zephaniah’s message is mostly one of judgment for sin. This reading, however, which comes from the conclusion of the book, prophesies joy for Judah and Jerusalem. Judgment has led to repentance, and God’s salvation is at hand.
Isaiah 12:2-6 In your midst is the Holy One of Israel. (Is. 12:6)
Philippians 4:4-7 Despite being in prison, Paul is remarkably upbeat as he writes this letter. Here, he urges his friends in Philippi to trust God with all their worries and concerns, with the hope they will experience God’s joy and peace.
THIS WEEK’S GOSPEL
Luke 21:25-36 God will fulfill God’s purposes and, already, hidden signs of that fulfillment abound. On that great day there will be dismay, perplexity, confusion, and terror, but God’s people shall be given strength to stand boldly and receive God’s promised redemption.
PASTOR DAVE’S SERMON SNAPSHOT: “That Hits Close to Home”
Today John the Baptist reminds us that we are to live compassionately, generously, ethically, honestly, graciously and above all gratefully. And as we live this way, in response to all God has done for us, we continue in the path of John, preparing ourselves to receive the Lord, who came, and who is coming again. This IS good news. Amen.
SONG OF THE DAY
“Son of God, Eternal Savior”
PRAYERS OF THE PEOPLE
Let us pray for the Church, the world, and for all in need. During Advent this year, each petition will end “Merciful Father,” to which the congregational response is “Hear our prayer.”
To you, O God, we give our praise. You sent your Son into the world to show us the way home to you. This Advent season, may we trust in your love and grace enough to be honest with you. May we also learn to live honestly with one another. Prepare in us the way of the Lord. Merciful Father,
Hear our prayer.
To you, O God, we offer our thanks. For the brightness and beauty of Advent and Christmas worship experiences. For the restfulness of winter, and the renewal of the earth during this season. For the warmth of homecomings planned for the holidays. For the joy of gathering once more with loved ones. And for the promised reunion one day with those whom we have entrusted into your eternal care. Merciful Father,
Hear our prayer.
To you, O God, we lift our prayers for all people according to their needs. Soothe the afflicted, comfort the distressed, and heal the sick, especially our members and their loved ones who have asked for public prayers: Anna Bero, former member John Boyd, Fred Corwin, Linda Ernst, Phyllis Hahn, Ruth Huehnerhoff, Eileen Johnson, Priscilla Kanestrom, Wanda Nelson’s daughter Nyra, Marlys Paulson, and Marilyn Van Brero. Merciful Father,
Hear our prayer.
To you, O God, we come for comfort. Bless Lila and all who mourn the passing of Jim McMillan, whose Memorial Service was held here Thursday; Bless Marlys, Erik and everyone who grieve the passing of John Paulson. Bless all who turn to you in their sorrow. May we and they experience comfort and joy as we celebrate the Advent of our Lord. Merciful Father,
Hear our prayer.
Hear our prayers, spoken and silent, that we commend to you this day, trusting in your abundant mercy, through Jesus Christ, our healer and our hope.
“In Christ Alone”
On the night in which he was betrayed, our Lord Jesus took bread, and gave thanks; broke it, and gave it to his disciples, saying: Take and eat; this is my body, given for you. Do this for the remembrance of me. Again, after supper, he took the cup, gave thanks, and gave it for all to drink, saying: This cup is the new covenant in my blood, shed for you and for all people for the forgiveness of sin. Do this for the remembrance of me. All are welcome to receive Christ’s Body and Blood in the Bread and Wine of the Eucharist.
YOUNG CHILDREN AND FAMILIES ARE INVITED TO THE “PRAY-GROUND” – This special space in the Sanctuary is designed for our youngest worshippers and their families. Children age 8 and under are welcome to color, play games, enjoy age-appropriate books, and just have their own space in the back of the transept – the southeast corner of the Sanctuary. We LOVE having children in worship! We hope this special place helps make them and their families feel both welcome and comfortable.
ADULT FAITH FORMATION TODAY – Our study of the action-packed book of Acts continues, as we look at Chapter 2, where we read about the coming of the Holy Spirit upon the apostles, allowing them to proclaim the Good News in languages they did not speak. Join us for this exciting series between services, beginning at 10:15 am and ending at 10:55 am, in the Library. This is our last session until after the New Year.
CHILDREN’S SUNDAY SCHOOL – A fun learning experiences for kids ages 4-10. Meet Miss Kristie in the the Youth Room between service.
TANZANIA 2020 TEAM MEETING TONIGHT – It is very important for all who are interested in being a part of the Travel Team to attend this month, as critical decisions are being made. Please also make your pre-deposits at or before the meeting, tonight from 5-7 pm, in the Library. If you are still interested but unable to attend, please contact Pastor Dave via email prior to tonight’s meeting. Asante!
THANK YOU FROM THE McMILLAN FAMILY – Lila and family are most greatful for the beautiful Memorial Service and wondeful Reception in honor of Jim. Thanks to all who prepared, led, and attended the service, and to the lvoing hands who provided the food and decorated the tables for the Reception. God bless you.
ANNUAL ARK BASKET FUNDRAISER CONTINUES ENDS TODAY – Check out this year’s cool gift baskets – perfect for your Christmas shopping! There are baskets for crafters, hikers, game players, children, wine lovers, chocoholics and more. Baskets will be on sale by Ark staff members between services. All proceeds support the Ark Early Learning Center Scholarship Fund. Today between services is your last chance!
BOX TOPS FOR EDUCATION – Pastor Judy is collecting box tops for the PTA of her children’s school throughout the year. They can be found on various boxes, like Cheerios, Kleenex, etc. Just clip them out and stick them in her mailbox. Thanks!
PRAYERS FOR HOMEBOUND MEMBERS – Ed and Phyllis Hahn, Doris Lundquist, Bill and Betty McConnell, Mary Moen, John and Marlys Paulson, Jane Pittenger, Norman Stromer, and Marilyn Van Brero,
CAROLERS NEEDED FOR HOMEBOUND VISITS – Help spread some Christmas cheer and joy this season as we sing carols and seasonal hymns for members unable to come to worship. Information about places, dates, and times, and a signup (or should we say sing-up!) sheet are at the Information Desk in the Narthex. Contact Pastor Judy with questions at 502-415-5883.
CHRISTMAS FLOWER DEDICATIONS – If you would like to make a Christmas flower dedication, forms are available at the Information Desk. Thank you for helping us share the beauty of Christmas this year.
LAST CALL FOR LOST & FOUND – It’s that time of year again when we clean out the Lost & Found drawer in Information Desk in the Narthex. There are lots of “misplaced” items there – water bottles, sunglasses, a mitten, a necklace, toys, and other treasures we hope find their way back to their rightful owner before the end of the year, when all remaining items are donated or recycled. Thank you.
UMBRELLA DONATIONS NEEDED – It’s rainy season again, and over the years some of the umbrellas we keep in the Narthex as “loaners” have gone missing, and others have been damaged. Do you have a golf-style, larger canopy umbrella to donate, or might you be willing to purchase one for Cross of Christ? You may have also noticed our old umbrella stand finally fell apart. A new one has been ordered and is scheduled to arrive this week. Will you help us fill it? Thanks!
YEAR-END GIVING – Here are a few reminders as you consider a 2018 year-end gift: If you would like your year-end gift to be included on your 2018 giving statement, it must be postmarked or received by the church, by Monday December 31. The church office will be open Christmas week on Thursday, December 27th only, from 9:30am-2pm and on Monday, December 31 from 9:30am-2pm. If you have any questions, please contact Denise Fuentes, bookkeeper at firstname.lastname@example.org by calling (425)746-7300 Ext. 108. Thank you for the Blessing of your offering.
By God’s grace, through faith in our Lord Jesus Christ, we are called to
Grow in Faith
Share the Gospel
Serve others, and
Thanks be to God!