We might be distant from each other physically, but we needn't be spiritually - and we certainly need not be distant from God...
Welcome to Sunday Worship!
The monthly Newsletter is available on the News page - March issue now out
Visit last week's service
This Sunday FAIRTRADE FORTNIGHT continues
This button will take you to a special ecumenical service of worship,
curated by the URC's Revd Kevin Snyman
And discover other resources on the Fairtrade website here.
SUNDAY 31 JANUARY
All Age Worship
Led by Revd Bryn Rickards
Songs of Praise!
Some words from Rend Collective about their song 'Rescuer'...
‘Our Father in heaven:
May your holy name be honoured;
may your Kingdom come;
may your will be done on earth as it is in heaven.
Give us today the food we need.
Forgive us the wrongs we have done,
as we forgive the wrongs that others have done to us.
Do not bring us to hard testing,
but keep us safe from the Evil One.
For yours is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory forever. Amen.’
Activity & Reading
Look at the pictures below - what do you see?
As you listen to the reading, shuffle them around to put them in the right place next to the text.
Praise the Lord, all you who worship him!
Honour him, you descendants of Jacob!
Fear and respect him, all you people of Israel!
He does not ignore those who need help.
He does not hate them.
He does not turn away from them.
He listens when they cry for help.
Lord, because of you I offer praise in the great assembly.
In front of all these worshipers I will do all that I promised.
Poor people, come eat and be satisfied.
You who have come looking for the Lord, praise him!
May your hearts be happy forever.
May those in faraway countries remember
the Lord and come back to him.
May those in distant lands worship him,
because the Lord is the King.
He rules all nations.
The people have eaten all they wanted
and bowed down to worship him.
Yes, everyone will bow down to him—
all who are on the way to the grave, unable to hold on to life.
Our descendants will serve him.
Those who are not yet born will be told about him.
Each generation will tell their children
about the good things the Lord has done.
Read by Lilly Rickards in the GNB - video text from the CEV
Then Jesus began to teach his disciples: “The Son of Man must suffer much and be rejected by the elders, the chief priests, and the teachers of the Law. He will be put to death, but three days later he will rise to life.” He made this very clear to them. So Peter took him aside and began to rebuke him. But Jesus turned around, looked at his disciples, and rebuked Peter. “Get away from me, Satan,” he said. “Your thoughts don't come from God but from human nature!”
Then Jesus called the crowd and his disciples to him. “If any of you want to come with me,” he told them, “you must forget yourself, carry your cross, and follow me. For if you want to save your own life, you will lose it; but if you lose your life for me and for the gospel, you will save it. Do you gain anything if you win the whole world but lose your life? Of course not! There is nothing you can give to regain your life. If you are ashamed of me and of my teaching in this godless and wicked day, then the Son of Man will be ashamed of you when he comes in the glory of his Father with the holy angels.”
How does this image make you feel?
Look closely at Peter and Jesus:
What does their body language say?
What do the 'movement’ and the colour in the picture suggest to you?
James Tissot (French, 1836-1902). Get Thee Behind Me, Satan (Rétire-toi, Satan), 1886-1896.
Opaque watercolour over graphite on grey wove paper, Image: 5 11/16 x 8 5/8 in. (14.4 x 21.9 cm). Brooklyn Museum, Purchased by public subscription, 00.159.153 (Photo: Brooklyn Museum, 00.159.153_PS2.jpg)
Steps towards the Cross
Jesus was going to be king by suffering and dying - and then rising to life. Peter had to learn that the way to life was through a giving up, a sacrifice. And Jesus told them that everyone who follows him needs to do the same.
Watch the video below which explains more:
Meditative Prayer & Hymn
Use the questions below and the hymn to guide you in a time of responsive prayer.
What are the parts of Jesus’ mission that you find hardest to accept? Which of his words do you find most ‘unacceptable’? Talk to God about these.
Are there ways in which you try to ‘save Jesus’ reputation’ and end up getting in the way and becoming an ‘adversary’? Ask God to show you. Can you hear his ‘rebuke’ as word that keeps you from harm?
What does it mean for you in your context to “forget yourself, carry your cross and follow Jesus”? Are there any specific choices that you feel God is calling you to make? Ask Jesus for the strength and grace you need.
Make me a captive, Lord.
And then I shall be free;
Force me to render up my sword,
And I shall conq’ror be.
I sink in life’s alarms
When by myself I stand,
Imprison me within Thine arms,
And strong shall be my hand.
My heart is weak and poor
Until it master find:
It has no spring of action sure,
It varies with the wind;
It cannot freely move
Till Thou hast wrought its chain;
Enslave it with Thy matchless love,
And deathless it shall reign.
My power is faint and low
Till I have learned to serve:
It wants the needed fire to glow,
It wants the breeze to nerve;
It cannot drive the world
Until itself be driven;
Its flag can only be unfurled
When Thou shalt breathe from heaven.
My will is not my own
Till Thou hast made it Thine;
If it would reach the monarch’s throne
It must its crown resign;
It only stands unbent
Amid the clashing strife,
When on Thy bosom it has leant,
And found in Thee its life.
"If any of you want to be my followers, you must forget about yourself. You must take up your cross and follow me."
Talk about what you think that means for us today
From Flame Creative website
To help you think about and remember Jesus' words, you could make 'follow me flip-flops':
Draw around your foot on a piece of card, cut out the shape and poke three holes to put pipecleaners through (you can also add buttons!).
Then write on things that you thought about earlier... steps you can take to follow Jesus.
Prayers of Intercession
Offered by Claire Coster
Post Service Chat
Let's share with each other what spoke to us today...
Join Zoom at 11:45am to chat together face to face...