This morning we continued our series, “The Greatest Gift” and Katherine Sikma explored two powerful Old Testament texts. One was a traditional Advent reading, Isaiah 9, but the second was one that many people are unfamiliar: the words of the prophet, Habakkuk. Kathrine did masterful work, pressing into the themes of darkness and light, reminding us that even in the midst of darkness and despair, we can await the light of Christ in confidence because God is faithful. As Habakkuk declared:
Though the fig tree does not bud and there are no grapes on the vines, though the olive crop fails and the fields produce no food, though there are no sheep in the pen and no cattle in the stalls, yet I will rejoice in the Lord, I will be joyful in God my Savior. The Sovereign Lord is my strength; he makes my feet like the feet of a deer, he enables me to tread on the heights. (Habakkuk 3:15-16)
During the Advent season, each Sunday we add some liturgical pieces to our gathering and today we used a litany we used based on Isaiah 9. It was taken from the Re-Worship website, a rich resource for all types of worship elements.
O God, when the world grows dark
and the advance of evil appears unstoppable,
may we never lose our vision
of Emmanuel’s light.
When society seems uncaring
and indifference predominates,
may we never forget the warmth
of Emmanuel’s love.
When people cry out for justice
but self-interest prevails,
may we never lose the fire
of Emmanuel’s anger.
When we know we must speak out
but our tongue seems to shrivel,
may we draw boldness from the truth
of Emmanuel’s proclamations.
When those we must confront are powerful
and our hearts grow fearful,
may we take strength from the courage
of Emmanuel’s actions.
O God, when the moment comes
and we must make our stand,
may it always be
at Emmanuel’s side.
Here is our complete worship flow:
- Song of Hope (Robbe Seay)
- Call to Worship
- God of Brilliant Lights (Aaron Shust)
- His Company (Daniel Renstrom)
- Advent Video: Starting to Wake Up (The Work of the People)
- Advent Litany
- Light of the World (Matt Redmann)
- Advent Conspiracy Update from the Pastors Discipleship Network
- Announcements and Offering
- Message (The Luminous Gift)
You can learn what other communities of faith experienced this weekend in worship at The Worship Community.