Sunday, September 16, 2018

God’s call to love with our whole hearts

THIS SUNDAY we move ahead in our series “Loving God, Loving Others” as we unpack God’s call to love with our whole hearts.

╬  “Loving God, Loving Others!”  The calling to love God with the whole of our being is central to Jesus’ life and teaching.  He draws upon the ancient wisdom tradition of Moses in proclaiming the “greatest commandment”:  to love God with all that we are, loving others as we would be loved ourselves.  That’s heart, soul, mind and strength.  To love with our whole hearts is the calling to unlock the emotional love metaphorically seated in the “heart” of our being.  The heart symbolizes the life dwelling in the body.  Heart love is the capacity to connect deeply and empathetically with something or someone beyond us; perhaps to give another greater priority then our very selves.

Below are the Prayer of the Day and Readings.  

Let’s gather in worship to celebrate heart love as a gift from God!

- Pr. Brad Highum

PRAYER OF THE DAY -----------------------------------------------

God of all, open our hearts to share the love that you have planted and nourished there.  Set us free to love you whole-heartedly and so to love others and your creation.  Amen.

READINGS ----------------------------------------------------------

First Reading:  Leviticus 19:17-18
17 You shall not hate in your heart anyone of your kin; you shall reprove your neighbor, or you will incur guilt yourself. 18 You shall not take vengeance or bear a grudge against any of your people, but you shall love your neighbor as yourself: I am the Lord.

Psalm 51:1-2,6-7,10-12
1 Have mercy on me, O God, according to your steadfast love; according to your abundant mercy blot out my transgressions.
2 Wash me thoroughly from my iniquity, and cleanse me from my sin.
6 You desire truth in the inward being; therefore teach me wisdom in my secret heart.
7 Purge me with hyssop, and I shall be clean; wash me, and I shall be whiter than snow.
10 Create in me a clean heart, O God, and put a new and right spirit within me.
11 Do not cast me away from your presence, and do not take your holy spirit from me.
12 Restore to me the joy of your salvation, and sustain in me a willing spirit.

Second Reading:  Acts 2:22-28
22 "You that are Israelites, listen to what I have to say: Jesus of Nazareth, a man attested to you by God with deeds of power, wonders, and signs that God did through him among you, as you yourselves know — 23 this man, handed over to you according to the definite plan and foreknowledge of God, you crucified and killed by the hands of those outside the law. 24 But God raised him up, having freed him from death, because it was impossible for him to be held in its power. 25 For David says concerning him, 'I saw the Lord always before me, for he is at my right hand so that I will not be shaken; 26 therefore my heart was glad, and my tongue rejoiced; moreover my flesh will live in hope.
27 For you will not abandon my soul to Hades, or let your Holy One experience corruption.  28 You have made known to me the ways of life; you will make me full of gladness with your presence.'

Gospel:  John 14:26-31
27 Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled, and do not let them be afraid. 28 You heard me say to you, 'I am going away, and I am coming to you.' If you loved me, you would rejoice that I am going to the Father, because the Father is greater than I. 29 And now I have told you this before it occurs, so that when it does occur, you may believe. 30 I will no longer talk much with you, for the ruler of this world is coming. He has no power over me; 31 but I do as the Father has commanded me, so that the world may know that I love the Father. Rise, let us be on our way.