November 29th

Advent Lighting: Love

Place the advent wreath in the middle of the room. You will be lighting two of the candles, so have a lighter ready.

Last week we focused on Joy (light one of the purple candles). Today, our attention goes to another theme of Advent: Love.

Love. A word so overused we often lose sight of its true meaning. As we learn to wait on the Lord this advent season, we remind one another how much we are loved by God the Father.

John the Apostle records Jesus’ words in his gospel account: “For God so loved the world that he gave his only begotten son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.”

Today, we light the candle of love. Not love of something insignificant, but of love shown to us in the manger. It was love that moved Jesus to take on human flesh and dwell among us. It was love that motivated him to walk this earth, showing us what it means to be God and human. It was love that ultimately sent him to the cross so that you and I could be reconciled to God the Father.

(Light one purple candle). As we light this candle and continue to worship, let us remember God’s extravagant love for us. As Sally Lloyd Jones says in the Jesus Story Book Bible, it’s a “A never-ending, never-giving up, always and forever love.”

Call to Worship

Facilitator, read this aloud. Read the words in bold aloud together.

Let us praise our Lord Jesus Christ.

Alleluia! Jesus is coming!

At Christmas Jesus came as a baby.

Alleluia! Jesus is coming!

He came to be like us because he loves us.

Alleluia! Jesus is coming!

He came to save us from our sin.

Alleluia! Jesus is coming!

He died, rose from the dead, and lives to this day. He will come again because he loves us.

Alleluia! Jesus is coming!

We praise the Father, we praise the Son, and we praise the Holy Spirit this morning

Alleluia! Jesus is coming!

Oh Come All Ye Faithful

God So Loved

Prayer following Music

Take time to pray together following the singing of songs. This can be led by one person or shared among your group.

Lesson for Kids

After kids lesson, feel free to dismiss the younger children if you desire.

Sermon

Open the bible and read Daniel 9:1-19

In the first year of Darius the son of Ahasuerus, by descent a Mede, who was made king over the realm of the Chaldeans— in the first year of his reign, I, Daniel, perceived in the books the number of years that, according to the word of the Lord to Jeremiah the prophet, must pass before the end of the desolations of Jerusalem, namely, seventy years.

Then I turned my face to the Lord God, seeking him by prayer and pleas for mercy with fasting and sackcloth and ashes. I prayed to the Lord my God and made confession, saying, “O Lord, the great and awesome God, who keeps covenant and steadfast love with those who love him and keep his commandments, we have sinned and done wrong and acted wickedly and rebelled, turning aside from your commandments and rules. We have not listened to your servants the prophets, who spoke in your name to our kings, our princes, and our fathers, and to all the people of the land. To you, O Lord, belongs righteousness, but to us open shame, as at this day, to the men of Judah, to the inhabitants of Jerusalem, and to all Israel, those who are near and those who are far away, in all the lands to which you have driven them, because of the treachery that they have committed against you. To us, O Lord, belongs open shame, to our kings, to our princes, and to our fathers, because we have sinned against you. To the Lord our God belong mercy and forgiveness, for we have rebelled against him 10 and have not obeyed the voice of the Lord our God by walking in his laws, which he set before us by his servants the prophets. 11 All Israel has transgressed your law and turned aside, refusing to obey your voice. And the curse and oath that are written in the Law of Moses the servant of God have been poured out upon us, because we have sinned against him. 12 He has confirmed his words, which he spoke against us and against our rulers who ruled us, by bringing upon us a great calamity. For under the whole heaven there has not been done anything like what has been done against Jerusalem. 13 As it is written in the Law of Moses, all this calamity has come upon us; yet we have not entreated the favor of the Lord our God, turning from our iniquities and gaining insight by your truth. 14 Therefore the Lord has kept ready the calamity and has brought it upon us, for the Lord our God is righteous in all the works that he has done, and we have not obeyed his voice. 15 And now, O Lord our God, who brought your people out of the land of Egypt with a mighty hand, and have made a name for yourself, as at this day, we have sinned, we have done wickedly.

16 “O Lord, according to all your righteous acts, let your anger and your wrath turn away from your city Jerusalem, your holy hill, because for our sins, and for the iniquities of our fathers, Jerusalem and your people have become a byword among all who are around us. 17 Now therefore, O our God, listen to the prayer of your servant and to his pleas for mercy, and for your own sake, O Lord,[b] make your face to shine upon your sanctuary, which is desolate. 18 O my God, incline your ear and hear. Open your eyes and see our desolations, and the city that is called by your name. For we do not present our pleas before you because of our righteousness, but because of your great mercy. 19 O Lord, hear; O Lord, forgive. O Lord, pay attention and act. Delay not, for your own sake, O my God, because your city and your people are called by your name.”

Response to Proclamation

After watching the sermon, take time to discuss the following questions

  1. Is there a scripture that comes to your mind that you would like it to be true of you?
  2. What is one barrier for you, in terms of what you believe, that perhaps keeps you from praying? (i.e I don’t have time? It doesn’t matter? God doesn’t need it, etc). Who else do you need to tell so they can help (MC, DNA, etc?)
  3. On a scale of 1 to 10. How important is it to you that others are praying for you? why? Who would you expect to be praying for you?

Communion

Place the communion elements in the middle of the room in view of everyone. Facilitator, read this aloud.

Communion is a weekly reminder of the love of the Father shown to us in Jesus. Because of his love, Jesus died on the cross in our place and for our sins.

Romans 5:8 says this: “…God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.”

At his last supper, the Lord Jesus took bread, and when he had given thanks, he broke it and said, “This is my body, which is for you; do this in remembrance of me.

In the same way, he took the cup after supper and said, “This cup is the new covenant in my blood; do this in remembrance of me.”

We take this bread and the cup together as one body saved by the one sacrifice of Jesus. Amen.

(take the elements together)

Sending

Benediction

Recite this together:

  • We are baptized into the name of the Father, so we are his family as sons and daughters 
  • We commit to using the question, “What would a good family do?” as a guide to our common life together. 
  • We believe we are brothers and sisters in Christ. 

Father, help us always remember we are family throughout this week. We will treat others as we want to be treated. Please help this week treat our households, neighbors, employers, employees, enemies and friends with the love and grace that you offer us.

As we go this week, Father reveal your love to us by the grace of Jesus and Spirit empower us to live this out

Soma, you are Sent.