Home Service Sunday 11th June 2023

Opening Prayer

Risen Lord Jesus, you call us by name.
You number the hairs of our head.
You know all our needs before we ask.
We bring you our emptiness and come seeking your love.
We bring you our sorrows and come seeking your joy.
We bring you our fears and come seeking your peace. Amen.

Loving God, we often find ourselves alone.
When we turn away from those who tax our patience and understanding to the limit, come to us in our guilt and listen to our prayer.
When we avoid those who destroy our ease, undermine our self-esteem and show us our faults, come to us in our fear and listen to our prayer.
When we cut ourselves off from others by keeping up old feuds and refusing to forgive and be forgiven, come to us in our bitterness and listen to our prayer.
When we cling to prejudice and stand aloof from those who are different from ourselves, come to us in our ignorance and listen to our prayer.
When we exclude those who don’t meet our standards and who offend our sensibilities, come to us in our pride and listen to our prayer.
When we suffer grief or pain and distance ourselves from those who would help, come to us in our need and listen to our prayer. Amen.

Please read John 5

The healing of the man at the pool of Bethzatha (or Bethesda) makes for a great story. The pool is known as a place of miracles – it was believed that an angel disturbed the waters from time to time, and that the first person in the water after that would be healed.
So, the most able-bodied, or those who had nursing assistants would be first in. This man has been ill for 38 years. Evidently poor and friendless, he has no one to help him.

At one level, this reminds us again that Jesus is not on the side of the rich and powerful, but of the poor. There’s a systematic injustice built in even to this system of healing, which excludes those who need it most – a deeply challenging perception that speaks to us today, in a nation and a world marked by profound inequalities. In the story, Jesus cuts through all that and goes to where the need is greatest.
When he asks the man, ‘Do you want to get well?’ he is treating him with respect, refusing to take control or assume that he knows best. Healing of any kind – bodily, emotionally or spiritually – begins with purposeful listening. Leaping straight in with solutions is unlikely to work, and will probably do more harm than good.

There are so many people in this world who need help and we can feel so helpless and don’t know where to begin.

Ask God to help you to start somewhere rather than do nothing.
Ask God to help you to see the individual people with needs and not just a faceless crowd.

Now follow God’s advise – get out there and do something!

Suggested Listening

Immortal, invisible, God only wise – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Zd0FyrzVUCM Lord of the Dance – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gtM8BRF7Bd0

O For a Thousand Tongues to Sing – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vFMAlhxnJrE

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.