Prayer of adoration
Stand up from your slumber, oh people of God.
God calls us now into his service.
Worship the God who waits for his children and delights in their progress.
All are welcome here today to love and worship our God in heaven.
Prayer of confession
The Pharaoh decrees death to the foreigner.
The power of fear and ‘hate-rage’ surround us.
In the face of evil – Forgive us our complacency.
The burning bush flickers beside us.
The presence of God invites us.
In the presence of the holy
Forgive us our lack of notice.
The Red Sea waters stand at attention.
The threshold of grace is breath-taking.
In the company of grace
Forgive us our reticence to call out God’s name.
Assurance of Pardon
This was never meant to be easy. Permanently wandering, permanently changing, permanently present. Be reassured that our God is patient, faithful and delivers his promises to us, even though we are sinners. Be reassured of his pardon and his mercy. Amen.
Read Exodus 14:21-28
God’s offer of a restart
Have you changed the way you are or the way you live or the way you love since the start of Covid?
Exodus 14:21-28 is just a snippet of a really long story about the fate of the Israelites. The escape through the Red Sea comes after us hearing about 9 or 10 plagues depending on how we count them (Blood, Frogs, Lice, Flies, Livestock, Boils, Hail, Locust, Darkness, Death of firstborn).
Ten times God had given the Egyptians the opportunity to change their ways.
Each plague gave the Egyptians a chance to reconcile with God by changing their ways. Each plague was ignored – the Egyptians went back to their old ways (especially when it comes to slavery) each time.
So God organised the Exodus, he parted the waters and then let them crash back together – protecting his people and forcing things to be different.
So – we have a chance to do things differently. Will we take the opportunity that Covid brings? Or will we act like an Ancient Egyptian and carry on regardless?
The Israelites had a choice too – they could either stay in relatively comfortable slavery or they could follow Moses (God chosen leader) into the desert with all its dangers and uncertainties.
What we see here is a faithful God – taking 10 attempts to change the Israelites situation and then a redeeming God that puts the past in the past and slams the door (or sea) shut so that it can’t come back to haunt them again.
God offers that to us too – we simply have to accept his faithfulness and redemption. And what better time to do that than as we emerge from the dangers and uncertainties of Covid.
Go now, and speak of what you have seen of God’s glory.
Do not cling to the holy moments
when heaven overshadows you,
but as the Lord lives, listen to Christ and follow him
from the places of revelation
to the places of mission.
And may God shine the light of glory into your hearts.
May Christ be with you and never leave you.
And may the Spirit renew the image of God within you.
We go in peace to love and serve the Lord,
In the name of Christ. Amen.
Wade in the Water www.youtube.com/watch?v=9-hKDYQ6F54
Guide me, O thou great Jehovah www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ofp6rdAgRrY
Immortal, invisible God, only wise www.youtube.com/watch?v=NacT-XxQcp0