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January 16, 2005 – 2nd Sunday after Epiphany

                                          RC/Pres: 2nd Sunday in Ordinary Time

        Revised Common Lectionary Readings

        Isaiah 49:1-7

        Psalm 40:1-11

        1 Corinthians 1:1-9

        John 1:29-42

What Are You Looking For?

*Call to Worship

God waits around the bends of life,

staying there patiently to meet us,

or walking on ahead as we rush past.

Christ turns and sees us following,

holding our eyes in love,

searching to know

the deepest desires of our hearts,

ready to call us in faith.

“Follow me” Christ says to us.

“Follow me down the days and years.”

We will be your people, O God.

We long to follow in your way.

*Prayer of Invocation        

Ask us who it is we look for, Holy Spirit.

Ask us if we are open to your presence here.

Call our faces toward your life,

that we may know you more.


Stand near to us in this moment, O Christ,

for we would be your people.

We pray in faith. Amen.

*Prayer of Confession       

O God, as you look at us

and know who we are,

we sometimes wonder

if we create you in our own image,

moulding you into our lives

in ways that suit us,

or leaving you behind

when we would rather walk alone.

We know that,

rather than being recreated ourselves

by your saving grace,

we sometimes choose to stay where we are,

refusing to move beyond our own limits.

Silent reflection.

Speak to our human frailty, O God.

Gather us toward the wonder

of your salvation, O Christ.

Forgive us if we have met you on the way

and would like to keep you to ourselves

rather than inviting faith in others.

Forgive us if we describe you to the world

in ways that discourage those

who long to find the true God.

Silent reflection.

Speak into our human frailty, O God.

Gather us toward the wonder

of your salvation, O Christ.

Be our friend, loving Jesus.

Travel deeply into the whole of our lives this day.

We pray in your name. Amen.

*Words of Assurance       

Even as we wait,

God in Christ moves toward us in grace.

Receive the hospitality of the loving parent

whose faithfulness to us never wavers.

We are forgiven.

Thanks be to God.

*Prayer of Thanksgiving   

We thank you, eternal God,

that you have called

your people to follow in the way

since time began.

We thank you that we hear your voice

sounding in the prophets of old,

in priests and people down the centuries.

We thank you that you come to us in stories,

and in ways that we can understand,

so that no matter who we are,

we can find an echo of our stumbling lives

in your word to us.

Thank you, O God,

for all that you are in our every day. Amen.

*Stewardship Thought      

As we search for our God, we usually have some inner awareness of who this God should be for us. Sometimes we are looking for a God who will make us good – who will control parts of our life that seem out of control, maybe even punish and reward us as we go. Sometimes we are looking for a God who will save us from all sorts of trauma and tragedies in our lives. Or, perhaps we want a God who gives us wisdom or who restores our energy as we struggle with various situations. Some of us are looking for a companion on life’s journey or one who works miracles. Who is the God you would recognize if you were to meet this God? Which God would you choose to follow as a disciple?

*Offertory Sentence                           

Make our offerings this day

part of our testimony

to all your goodness to us, O God.

Your offering will now be received.

*Offertory Prayer                                

In gratitude and hope,

we bring you our gifts, O God.

Hold them in your hands,

that we may be wise in their using.

This we pray, in faith. Amen.

*Prayer of Intercession      

O God, you have called your people

to be a light to the nations in every age,

following you out into the world in courage

and claiming the ground for justice and truth.

Show us the way, Jesus Christ,

and help us to hear all whose voices

are silenced in despair or oppression.

A silence is kept.

As we wait on you today,

we are aware of some people

who need to be embraced by your hope

and held fast in your love.

We pray for them now.

The people pray.

Raise up among us the prophets of today

and open our hearts to hear them

above the sounds of those

who would lead us away from your calling

and on to more comfortable paths.

Give to us all that we need

to be more faithful to you.

We pray especially for these gifts for our life now.

The people pray.

Come to us, Jesus, our friend.

Come, brave Jesus,

come and call us,

that we may be your people.

This we pray in your name. Amen.



Follow Jesus down the mountains of life

and into the cities of our day,

that the salvation of God may be proclaimed.


And may the hands of the Christ

stay within our reach,

the wisdom of God be found in our midst,

and the Holy Spirit

be our challenge and our peace. Amen.





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