Unprecedented ChangePresent Hope | week 2 | 05.31.20
Thank you for joining us for our Digital Worship Gathering! You can use the worship guide below to follow along with songs, prayers and readings. This week is the second in our series Present Hope.
Call to Worship
God, the light of your Spirit has fallen upon us,
The seal of your ownership is on us,
You have placed the Holy Spirit in our hearts.
Like tongues of fire it has renewed and restored.
In our rising and our sleeping,
In our working and our playing,
In our joys and in our sorrows,
Your Spirit’s brightness has dispelled the darkness,
In our loving and our caring,
In our moving and our listening,
In our thoughts and in our actions,
God’s Spirit has brought life out of death.
(Pause to invite the Holy Spirit into your day’s activities)
God, your Spirit fell like tongues of fire.
It filled those who were empty,
It empowered those who were weary.
It brought together those who were divided,
It reassured those who were afraid.
God, your spirit fell like tongues of fire.
By its power we can walk together as one,
By its power we can find strength to share.
By its power we can find freedom in loving each other,
By its power we can find life in you.
Acts 2:1-4 (NLT)
On the day of Pentecost all the believers were meeting together in one place. Suddenly, there was a sound from heaven like the roaring of a mighty windstorm, and it filled the house where they were sitting. Then, what looked like flames or tongues of fire appeared and settled on each of them. And everyone present was filled with the Holy Spirit and began speaking in other languages, as the Holy Spirit gave them this ability.
Come, Holy Spirit!
Come and fill us with your love.
Open our eyes to see the presence of God all around us,
in the stillness of this sacred time,
in the busyness and noise of our city streets,
in the joys and celebrations of our lives,
in the tragedies and struggles that break our hearts.
Come, Holy Spirit, and comfort those who grieve.
Grant them the peace that only you can bring.
Stir within us a trust in life beyond death,
as we ponder the mysteries of Christ’s resurrection
and the hope we have in new and everlasting life.
Come, Holy Spirit, and bring wholeness to the sick.
Strengthen those who are weak;
heal the wounded and broken;
give rest to the weary.
Come, Holy Spirit, and inspire our warring world to seek peace,
to love our enemies,
to put away our weapons,
to remember the price paid for our freedom,
to care for those who have served.
Come, Holy Spirit, and ignite a fire in our bones,
a passion for justice that cannot be quenched
until all of your children are loved,
until no one is marginalized or oppressed,
until everyone has the opportunity to thrive,
until the world is transformed and renewed.
Come, Holy Spirit, and revive your church.
Free us from complacency and apathy;
inspire us with Christ’s vision for a world reborn;
help us to recognize our gifts for ministry
and to use them in service of others;
transform our hearts and our minds;
fill us with love that overflows;
remind us that there is no greater calling
than to love you with all that we are
and to love our neighbors as ourselves.
give us a glimpse of your kingdom
emerging around us
and drawing us into the new things
you are doing in the world.
It is for your kingdom your glory that we pray, Amen.
Feel free to read along with Paul as he begins his talk with this scripture:
1 Peter 1:3-7 (NIV)
Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! In his great mercy he has given us new birth into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, and into an inheritance that can never perish, spoil or fade. This inheritance is kept in heaven for you, who through faith are shielded by God’s power until the coming of the salvation that is ready to be revealed in the last time. In all this you greatly rejoice, though now for a little while you may have had to suffer grief in all kinds of trials. These have come so that the proven genuineness of your faith—of greater worth than gold, which perishes even though refined by fire—may result in praise, glory and honor when Jesus Christ is revealed.
Questions for discussion:
2. Does the Triune God’s work at “changing lives to change the world” only happen to important people, like the Apostle Peter?
3. Would you agree that what makes you really you are your passions and desires? If not, what makes up the real you?
4. Since the Triune God radically changes us in a new birth so that our desires and longings are now connected to God, can you identify what your God-centered desires are?
5. How have you experienced biblical hope (the strong confidence that God is going to do good for us as He promised) in this pandemic?
6. How are ways that we can tap into our “eternal inheritance” in real time to make a difference in bringing change to our small corner of the world?
This week, Pastor Paul encourages us to turn to God in times of trouble.
Complete this coloring page and spend some time discussing the following questions with your family.
- How has God given you strength?
- How is God protecting you right now?
Pastor Paul also encourages us to remember what God has done for us.
- Gather rocks, a bowl, and markers.
- Place the bowl somewhere where everyone will see it.
3. When you remember something that God has done for you, write it on a rock and place it in the bowl.
4. When someone asks you what the rocks are for, you then can share about the many things God has done for you!
For financial gifts, use your bank’s online payment option to send a gift to Discovery, or have someone address an envelope (a good opportunity for digital natives) and place the stamp on it. Checks can be mailed to:
7245 Eastern Ave SE
Grand Rapids, MI 49508
Please specify “general fund” or “missions fund” on the memo line.
Or, use this form to give online via the Christian Reformed Church’s site (our denomination). Be sure to choose Michigan- Grand Rapids- Discovery CRC from the drop-down list. You can give via credit card or automatic bank withdrawal. A 3% fee will be charged to Discovery.
For gifts of encouragement, write a note or draw a picture for someone who may need encouragement at this time. Have someone address the envelope and place a stamp on it. Or deliver it in person (keep that six foot social distance) to a neighbor or loved one.
For gifts of art, share a picture or video of your artistic response to the talk or your coloring page with us on Instagram (@discoverycrc) (parents permitting).
May the Holy Spirit fall upon you, encompass you, and support you.
May the Holy Spirit transform you, lead you, and equip you.
May the Holy Spirit give you encouragement, strength, and comfort to serve and worship our triune God both now and forever. Amen.
Digital Prayer Pad
Prayer requests will be sent to Sara, our administrator, who will compile and distribute them to the congregation via email throughout the week as usual.