The Practice of Gratitude
Call to Worship
But the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid; for behold, I bring you good news of great joy which will be for all the people; for today in the city of David there has been born for you a Savior, who is Christ the Lord. This will be a sign for you: you will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger.” And suddenly there appeared with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God and saying, “Glory to God in the highest, And on earth peace among men with whom He is pleased.”
Church, the Lord has done great things for us!
And we are filled with joy!
Our God has turned our weeping into singing,
He’s turned our tears into songs of joy!
Emmanuel, come anew in our hearts this day,
and remain in us forever.
-based on Psalm 126
Confession of Sin
God of salvation, in Christ you have done great things-
our hearts are filled with joy.
By your power you lifted us out of the wasteland of sin
and brought us with joy and laughter into your kingdom.
Salvation is your gift to us.
But we confess that we often try to replace your gift with our own efforts.
We try to complete what is already perfect;
we try to add to what is already full;
we try to earn what we already have;
we look for joy in things that are lifeless.
Forgive us for our foolishness and idolatry.
Help us to focus on your grace.
Help us to live grateful lives in return.
Assurance of Pardon
For while we were still weak, at the right time Christ died for the ungodly. For one will scarcely die for a righteous person—though perhaps for a good person one would dare even to die— but God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.
Therefore, since we have been justified by faith,
we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ.
Through him we have also obtained access by faith
into this grace in which we stand,
and we rejoice in hope of the glory of God.
-Romans 5:6-8, 1-2
May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, so that by the power of the Holy Spirit you may abound in hope.
Peace be with you all.
And also with you.