Month: August 2016

A Year in Proverbs – 4:20-27

A Year in Proverbs - August

My son, pay attention to what I say;
turn your ear to my words.
Do not let them out of your sight,
keep them within your heart;
for they are life to those who find them
and health to one’s whole body.
Above all else, guard your heart,
for everything you do flows from it.
Keep your mouth free of perversity;
keep corrupt talk far from your lips.
Let your eyes look straight ahead;
fix your gaze directly before you.
Give careful thought to the[c] paths for your feet
and be steadfast in all your ways.
Do not turn to the right or the left;
keep your foot from evil.

A Year in Proverbs – 4:10-17

A Year in Proverbs - August

Listen, my son, accept what I say,
and the years of your life will be many.
I instruct you in the way of wisdom
and lead you along straight paths.
When you walk, your steps will not be hampered;
when you run, you will not stumble.
Hold on to instruction, do not let it go;
guard it well, for it is your life.
Do not set foot on the path of the wicked
or walk in the way of evildoers.
Avoid it, do not travel on it;
turn from it and go on your way.
For they cannot rest until they do evil;
they are robbed of sleep till they make someone stumble.
They eat the bread of wickedness
and drink the wine of violence.

A Year in Proverbs – 4:1-9

A Year in Proverbs - August

Listen, my sons, to a father’s instruction;
pay attention and gain understanding.
I give you sound learning,
so do not forsake my teaching.
For I too was a son to my father,
still tender, and cherished by my mother.
Then he taught me, and he said to me,
‘Take hold of my words with all your heart;
keep my commands, and you will live.
Get wisdom, get understanding;
do not forget my words or turn away from them.
Do not forsake wisdom, and she will protect you;
love her, and she will watch over you.
The beginning of wisdom is this: get[a] wisdom.
Though it cost all you have,[b] get understanding.
Cherish her, and she will exalt you;
embrace her, and she will honour you.
She will give you a garland to grace your head
and present you with a glorious crown.’

A Year in Proverbs – 3:27-35

A Year in Proverbs - August

Do not withhold good from those to whom it is due,
when it is in your power to act.
Do not say to your neighbour,
“Come back tomorrow and I’ll give it to you”—
when you already have it with you.
Do not plot harm against your neighbour,
who lives trustfully near you.
Do not accuse anyone for no reason—
when they have done you no harm.

Do not envy the violent
or choose any of their ways.

For the Lord detests the perverse
but takes the upright into his confidence.
The Lord’s curse is on the house of the wicked,
but he blesses the home of the righteous.
He mocks proud mockers
but shows favour to the humble and oppressed.
The wise inherit honour,
but fools get only shame.

A Year in Proverbs – 3:13-26

A Year in Proverbs - August

Blessed are those who find wisdom,
those who gain understanding,
for she is more profitable than silver
and yields better returns than gold.
She is more precious than rubies;
nothing you desire can compare with her.
Long life is in her right hand;
in her left hand are riches and honour.
Her ways are pleasant ways,
and all her paths are peace.
She is a tree of life to those who take hold of her;
those who hold her fast will be blessed.

By wisdom the Lord laid the earth’s foundations,
by understanding he set the heavens in place;
by his knowledge the watery depths were divided,
and the clouds let drop the dew.

My son, do not let wisdom and understanding out of your sight,
preserve sound judgment and discretion;
they will be life for you,
an ornament to grace your neck.
Then you will go on your way in safety,
and your foot will not stumble.
When you lie down, you will not be afraid;
when you lie down, your sleep will be sweet.
Have no fear of sudden disaster
or of the ruin that overtakes the wicked,
for the Lord will be at your side
and will keep your foot from being snared.

A Year in Proverbs – 3:9-12

A Year in Proverbs - August

Honour the Lord with your wealth,
with the firstfruits of all your crops;
then your barns will be filled to overflowing,
and your vats will brim over with new wine.

My son, do not despise the Lord’s discipline,
and do not resent his rebuke,
because the Lord disciplines those he loves,
as a father the son he delights in.

A Year in Proverbs – 3:5-8

A Year in Proverbs - August

Trust in the Lord with all your heart
and lean not on your own understanding;
in all your ways submit to him,
and he will make your paths straight.[a]
Do not be wise in your own eyes;
fear the Lord and shun evil.
This will bring health to your body
and nourishment to your bones.

A Year in Proverbs – 3:1-4

A Year in Proverbs - August

My son, do not forget my teaching,
but keep my commands in your heart,
for they will prolong your life many years
and bring you peace and prosperity.
Let love and faithfulness never leave you;
bind them round your neck,
write them on the tablet of your heart.
Then you will win favour and a good name
in the sight of God and man.

Prayers for strangers – 14 August 2016

Lord Jesus, you came to us so that through you we would not be strangers to God, but could know the Father. In life you told us of the good news that the Father’s kingdom is near; in death on the cross you saved us so that we might be welcomed into eternal life in the Father’s kingdom, adopted in your family. You commanded us to love our God and our neighbours, and in resurrection, left us your Holy Spirit that the glory of God may be known in all the world.

We thank you and offer you all our worship and praise.

One shall tell another
And he shall tell his friend
Husbands, wives and children
Shall come following on
From house to house in families
Shall more be gathered in
And lights will shine in every street
So warm and welcoming

We recognize and welcome Your presence, moving in us and among us, between us and through us. Holy Spirit, reveal Yourself to us, we pray.

Where darkness has been darkest, The brightest light will shine

Help us to be a light in the dark world around us, not merely professing our faith, but also proving our faith by the way that we live and love. May our relationships be a testimony of Your compassionate kindness and mercy. May we recognize every place we visit, wherever our feet may fall, and every face we meet as part of a personal mission field without borders. We pray for the people of our neighbourhood. May they know they are welcome in this place, and come to know you in the way that will change and save their lives.

When I needed a neighbour
Were you there, were you there?
When I needed a neighbour
Were you there?

We come as those called to offer Christ’s welcome, to reach across all lines; to carry on the mission of the Messiah who looked the “other” in the eyes with love. Challenge us with your radical example of love. Stretch us to engage the way you engage. Holy Spirit who challenges and empowers us, urge us to compassion, break down our resistance, strengthen our resolve, open our hearts, and inspire our minds. Flow through us, and make us vessels of Your welcome, compassion, justice and love.

I was hungry and thirsty
Were you there, were you there?
I was hungry and thirsty
Were you there?

Guide the leaders ours and of all nations, that justice may prevail throughout the world.

Father, we ask your blessing on those who have fled into refugee camps, private homes, churches and communities. May they find the refuge they seek. We pray for those offering welcome to relatives, friends or strangers in their homes, churches and communities. We ask your wisdom for those working in camps and among displaced people wherever they are. Through their care, may your gifts of patience, freedom and hope be shared with all.

I was cold, I was naked
Were you there, were you there?
When I needed a shelter
Were you there?

Lord we come to You with hearts that are holding the people we love who are struggling, those close to us who are sick, those who are grieving, and those in need of Your healing. We pray for members of our church family who suffer today.

Here is healing and forgiveness:
The wine of the kingdom
The wine of the kingdom of God

God of healing, we call out to you.

When I needed a healer
Were you there, were you there?
When I needed a healer
Were you there?

We know that you comfort those who mourn, and lift to you all known to us who are grieving at this time, or whose anniversaries of loss fall at this time and in particular think of their families and friends. Hear us, Lord of life.

Let your church always be an instrument of your peace and love, and let your glory be over all the earth.

Wherever we travel
You’ll be there, You’ll be there.
Wherever you travel
You’ll be there.

And the creed and the colour
And the name won’t matter
You’ll be there.

Father, to you be glory and honour forever;
hear our prayers, in Jesus’ name, and for his sake,

Amen.