Home Service 7th August 2022

A prayer of approach 

Just as we are, together and apart, 
we come to worship you, Lord God, 
to hear your word and sing your praise, 
to acknowledge our need and share your love. 

Amen. 

 

A prayer of adoration 

God of richness beyond our imagining, 
of love beyond our comprehension, 
of giving beyond our worth, 
of forgiveness beyond our earning, 
of generosity beyond anything we need, 
we adore you. 

Amen.  

A prayer of confession and an Assurance of forgiveness 

For our lack of generosity and giving, of caring and sharing: 
Lord, forgive us. 

For our neglect of need of body, mind or soul: 
Lord, forgive us. 

For our silence when words would have healed 
and for harsh words that needn’t have been spoken: 
Lord, forgive us. 

For our living that fails to put into practice 
what we hear of you and from you: 
Lord, forgive us. 

For our ignoring of your truths, your ways, your words: 
Lord, forgive us. 

Amen. 

Assurance of forgiveness 

We have confessed our sins, Lord. 
Jesus taught us to pray to you, 
and Jesus promised that our sins would be forgiven. 

We trust in your promises, 
and amid the cacophony of noise that life throws at us, 
may we hear your word ‘my son, my daughter, my child, 
your sins are forgiven. 

Go and live well to the glory of my name 
and the good of all’. 

Amen. 

 

Please read Ecclesiastes 1.2,12-14; 2.18-23 

 

Ecclesiastes (‘the Teacher’) seems to come from the wise king Solomon (1.1), but it was probably written long after his death (perhaps as late as the fourth century BC – 500 years later). 

It belongs to the strand of wisdom teaching that rejects the traditional associations between God’s blessing, righteous living, the pursuit of wisdom, hard work and wealth. According to the Teacher, the search for connections is ‘vanity’ – worthless, futile and deeply frustrating. As an example, he cites what will happen to the fruits of his wisdom, knowledge, toil and skill. When he dies, it will pass to others, but – ‘who knows whether they will be wise or foolish?’ (2.18-21). In the face of all this vanity, wise people should be content merely to ‘eat and drink, and find enjoyment in their toil’ (2.24; 9.7-10). 

If you get the chance, have a go at reading all of Ecclesiastes – the Teacher’s search for truth leaves no assumption unchallenged. He may not have the last word, but his honest searching questions attitudes towards all kinds of abundance: material, spiritual and social. 

Ecclesiastes tells us toil is a waste of time; do you agree? I’m setting off on my holidays tomorrow; I’m back in circulation 1st September! Hopefully refreshed and ready to toil once more! 

 

A sending out prayer 

Loving God, you have given us eyes to see 
the beauty and bounty of the earth, 
and minds to understand the importance of sharing. 
As we go from this place, make us quick to see 
where there is injustice or suffering, 
and generous to do what we can to alleviate either. 
Amen 

 

Suggested listening 

All that I am, all that I have – www.youtube.com/watch?v=c3Xona5g76k 
As the deer pants for the water – www.youtube.com/watch?v=FBppKZ0eJlQ 
Be thou my vision – www.youtube.com/watch?v=rwwWMWTpp-U 

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