We're glad you're here! This week's ToGather builds on the example of John the Baptizer and challenges us to find our greatest joy in preparing the hearts of people to receive Jesus. This week we have our Verse of the Day devotional, a communion reflection, and a closing blessing all on one video. The contents of theese three pieces directly connect us with people in the USA, Rwanda, and India and indirectly with people from all over the world.
Today, you will find two songs that focus on opening our hearts to God to be used by Him. Then we will have a video that includes the Verse of the Day devotional, a Communion reflection, and blessing from scripture. Two songs and a closing blessing will follow our video. (To prepare to worship, you may want to have some wine or grape juice along with some bread to share in Communion. You can also download the lyrics for today's music.)
Now let's prepare our hearts with a prayer-song for God to do His work in us, followed by a beloved song that reminds us that God can bring us peace in life's worst storms:
The Acapella Group from different generations sings "Create in Me a Clean Heart O God":
Nashville singers join together in a moving social distancing rendition of "When Peace Like a River":
Blessing and Welcome from Scripture:
We continue our time of worship with a blessing that we can share with others in the room or say out loud to ourselves to remind us of our source of peace!
Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice! Let your gentleness be evident to all. The Lord is near. Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus (Philippians 4:4-7).
Today's ToGather Devotional, Communion Reflection, and Blessing:
Ending with Songs of Praise:
Hillsong United's "So Will I (100 Billion X)" is a hymn that takes us from God's creative majesty to our call to join Him in His mission on earth. Please do not miss these words of power and truth!
Beethoven's ninth symphony is considered by many the greatest musical composition of all time. The explosion of joy, rooted in faith, is celebrated by a flashmob that plays and sings "Beethoven's Ode to Joy," which in English is sung as "Joyful, Joyful, We Adore Thee." The English lyrics are included here.
Blessing and Farewell Grace from Scripture:
Now may the God of peace —
who brought up from the dead our Lord Jesus,
the great Shepherd of the sheep,
and ratified an eternal covenant with his blood —
may he equip you with all you need
for doing his will.
May he produce in you,
through the power of Jesus Christ
every good thing that is pleasing to him.
All glory to him forever and ever! Amen. (Hebrews 13:20-21 NLT).
Putting into Practice:
Come join us for Living My MUSD" (said, "Living My MUST") — Living My Mission Under Social Distancing. This week, we focus on sharing low-tech love in a world of high-tech solutions. These are practical ministry insights for our current times.