Worship: July 30, 2017

Sunday, July 30, 2017

Hard Promises

 Visitors: Welcome to our church.  Please sign our guest book!  If you do not have a church home, we pray that you will find one with us.  We have large-print bulletins available, as well as hearing assistance devices.  Please ask an usher if you require either of these.  Restrooms are located in the church school building.  Go through the door next to the choir loft, and straight ahead.  We also have restrooms downstairs in Fellowship Hall.  Again, exit through the door next to the choir loft, turn left down the hall, and go down the steps. 

We Gather In Awe And Wonder



Chime Interlude And Candlelighting

Leader:   Holy Spirit, Creator, as you hovered over the waters, cover us with the light of your presence.

All:         Holy Spirit, Comforter, by you we are born again, cover us with the light of your holiness.

Leader:  Holy Spirit, Redeemer, by you we are made a living temple, cover us with the light of redemption.

All:         Breath of life, you breathe light into the whole body of the Church and dwell in each one of us.

Response: “I Danced in the Morning”………..……#157, v 1

*Call To Worship

One:       God of the covenant, long before we were here, you were here.  You have made promises with our ancestors of faith:

Lectern Side: With Abraham and Sarah,

One:       you promised they would be the father and mother of many nations, with descendents too numerous to count.  Sarah had a child, named Isaac, at a very advanced age and at the very time that you promised.

Pulpit Side:   With Rebekah and Isaac,

One:       you promised to deliver Isaac from becoming a human sacrifice, and provided a ram instead; you promised Rebekah would carry two nations in her womb, through Jacob and Esau.

Lectern Side: With Jacob, Leah, and Rachel,

One:       you made it possible for Jacob to be the father of many children and fulfilled the covenant you had made with Abraham and Sarah.

Pulpit Side:   With all of us gathered here today,

One:       you continue to make promises with each of us, not just about daughters or sons; but about life in abundance, a future with hope, and love ever-lasting.

All:         We have come to worship a faithful God of the covenant who keeps promises throughout the generations.

 *Hymn: “Standing on the Promises”….. …………………#838


One:       Gracious God, Gentle Spirit, Christ Jesus:  we have come to worship today with all of who we are.  Some of us come feeling uncertain about the relationships and friendships we have with one another.

All:         We give thanks that we can trust in our relationship with you.

One:       Some of us come thinking of past hurts, betrayals, and broken promises in our lives.

All:         We give thanks that we can trust you will never break your promises with us.

One:       Some of us come joy-filled, hopeful and ready to celebrate.

All:         We give thanks that you journey with us in our moments of joy.

One:       Some of us come reflecting on struggles, sorrows, and dreams.

All:         We give thanks that you accompany us in our struggles.

One:       We come with different feelings, different thoughts, different joys, different struggles, and many uncertainties, and yet we have all come to this place at this time.  For all of these prayers both spoken and unspoken, we give thanks.

All:         Amen.

 We Recognize Our Brokenness

Prayer Of Confession

Leader:   Gracious God, we are people of good intentions.  We have good intentions to love one another; good intentions to be an authentic community together, to honour our words and promises, and to always honour you.

People:  We confess that we have not always lived up to our good intentions.  We are broken people, and we have broken promises.  Forgive us, dear God, for the ways in which we have failed one another, and the ways in which we have failed you.  Amen.  (A time for silent prayers of confession.)

 Assurance Of God’s Forgiveness

Leader:   Hear the good news:  God forgives us again and again.  We have second chances and third chances and fourth chances. . . to keep trying to get it right – and to live up to our good intentions.  Even though we sometimes fail God, God never fails us; God always keeps God’s promises to be faithful.  Thanks be to God.

 Reading Of The Scripture: Genesis 29: 15-28 (O.T., pg. 25)

A Time For Children

Anthem:   “You Are My All in All”……..…………Jernigan


Reading Of The Gospel:   Matthew 13: 31-33, 44-52 (N.T., pg. 14)

 We Reflect On New Possibilities

Message For This Day

Affirmation Of Faith

Leader:   Let us affirm our faith together.

All:         We believe in God of the covenant, whose faithful promises are fulfilled over generations.  We believe that God imagines possibilities beyond our lifetimes, even when we worry about what will happen tomorrow.  We believe that the Spirit imagines that which is unseen, even when we focus only on what we can see in our minds and our hearts.  We believe that Jesus the Christ is the great reconciler, even when we continue to break promises and community.  We believe that we are Christ’s partners in ministry, and God’s vision is bigger than our most expansive thoughts.  God’s ministry occurs over many generations.  In Christ, we can take a long-term view.

*Hymn: “Great God of Every Blessing”………………..#694

Pastoral Prayer And The Lord’s Prayer

   (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 sins as we forgive those who sin against us.  And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil.  For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, for ever.  Amen.)

Our Offering: Our financial offering is one way that our members participate in the mission and ministry of this church. We thank you for your financial support.  For those of you who are visiting, please feel no need to participate in the offering.  This worship service is our gift to you.

 Offertory:   “Lamb of God”……………….…..Paris

Chris and Emma

*Doxology: “Praise God, from Whom All Blessings” …………..….#606

 *Prayer Of Dedication

Leader:   Giving and Gracious God, you have shown us what it means to give.  You have showered us with gifts of love, of grace, and of life itself.  Now, with gratitude, we offer you back humble gifts; we offer you our whole selves.  Some of our gifts are of time, some are of spirit, and some are of finances.  We pray that you will bless all of our gifts, and that you will show us how to partner with you to use all of these gifts for your continued ministry in creation.  Amen.

We Go Forth To Live Transformed Lives

*Closing Hymn: “God of the Fertile Fields” ………….#714


Leader:   You are a child of the covenant.  Go into the world, knowing that God’s promises for you will never fail.

*Choral Benediction: “You Shall Go Out with Joy”……………#80

*Chime Meditation


*Where noted, please stand if able.      


 July’s Proverb:  

The poor and the oppressor have this in common: the Lord gives light to the eyes of both. Proverbs 29: 13

 Bake Sale Today Sponsored By Zion During McDannell’s “Customer Appreciation Day.”   Come to McDannell’s Fruit Farm & Market and buy something to take home to enjoy!   Proceeds to go toward our Capital Improvement Fund.

Hot Dog Fellowship.  The deluge last Sunday evening may have washed us out, but we’re going to try again this evening, Sunday the 30th.  So grab your roasting sticks and join in the fun and fellowship, not to mention food, at the hot dog roast at 6:00 p.m. behind Zion House.  Bring your lawn chairs and a dessert to share.

A Peach Sundae Benefit For The Biesecker Family will be held on August 6 from 11:00 to 4:00 at the McDannell Fruit Farm & Market.

 At The Ladies’ Breakfast, please bring one or more examples from one of your special items that you have collected. Show others your collectibles!   The August breakfast will be held on the 14th at 9:00 a.m. at the Apple Bin. See you then. Bring a neighbor!

Summer Christian Education: An Adult Confirmation Class. A summer adult program is being hosted by Pastor Ben Siebert in the backyard of Trinity Lutheran’s parsonage on N. High St., Arendtsville. The last two sessions are this evening at 7:00 p.m. and August 13. Bring a lawn chair. Join us for an opportunity to go through some of the exercises the current confirmation students use (adjusted to adult abilities).

 Zion’s Financial Data

Income through June – $93,322.55

Expenses through June – $96,156.96

*Deficit – $2,834.41

*This is partially due to the unbudgeted $3,000 cost for a new copier in 2017.

 Greeter And Bulletin Sponsorship Sign-Up Sheets are now on the credenza.

(Bulletin Sponsorship is $15 per Sunday. Please place your remittance designated for Bulletins in the offering plate.)

Hoffman Home School Supplies.  Zion will again be collecting school supplies to be donated to Hoffman Homes to support their school, Hoffman Academy.   A display board in the back of the sanctuary will have slips of paper listing items to be purchased.  The items on each slip of paper will cost between $15 and $20.  Take as many slips as you like, then return your purchased items to the collection bin by Sunday, August 20.  There will also be samples of the items so you will know exactly what to get!  I hope you can take advantage of back-to-school sales in August to stretch your dollars!   Monetary donations will also be accepted, and I will do your shopping for you!  Thank you for your support of this project!  (This is in lieu of the Hoffman Homes Christmas toy donations.)  Questions or money, see Jo.

The What’s Cookin’ portion  Of The Pool Party is cancelled, due to low RSVP numbers and availability.  (The Senior High hours of the Pool Party will remain: 7:00-10:30 p.m. – 7th-12th grade – Pizza and drinks provided; bring a snack to share.) The pool party is on Saturday, August 12, at the Knouse complex in Arendtsville.

John’s Meals Executive Board will meet on Tuesday, August 15, 6:30 p.m., in Fellowship Hall.

John’s Meals Packing/Delivery Team Training will be provided on Monday, August 28, at 7:00 p.m. in Fellowship Hall.

Please Volunteer To Assist With Children’s Sunday School beginning in the fall of 2017. The sign up book is on the credenza.

 With John’s Meals joining under the UACT umbrella and its 501(c)3 status,  monetary donations may now be made payable to “UACT – John’s Meals” and made be put into the offering plate or mailed to: UACT, PO Box 593, Arendtsville, PA 17303.

The 2017 Flower Chart is posted in the vestibule.  Available dates are September 3; October 29; and December 17. When Paying For Altar Flowers, please give payment to the altar guild representative for that month. A check payment is preferred. Altar flowers are from The Flower Boutique with a florist’s choice $35 arrangement cost.

Coming Up Next Week:

July 30, Bake sale at McDannell’s

July 30, Hot dog fellowship, Zion Hse, 6:00 pm

July 31, Consistory mtg, Zion Hse, 7:00 pm

Aug. 5, Totem Pole Playhouse matinee, 2:00 pm

Looking Forward:

Aug. 6, Worship with communion, 9:00 am

Aug. 6, Peach sundae benefit for Biesecker family, McDannell Fruit Farm, 11 am – 4 pm

Aug. 14, Ladies’ breakfast, Apple Bin, 9:00 am

Aug. 15, John’s Meals Exeuctive Bd mtg, F. H., 6:30 pm

Aug. 17, Worship committee, Zion Hse, 7:00 pm

Aug. 20, Trivia nite, 6:00 pm

Aug. 27, Hot dog fellowship, Zion Hse, 6:00 pm

Aug. 28, John’s Meals packing/delivery team training, F. H., 7:00 pm

Sept. 10, Rally Sunday