The Tower Of Babel
Call to Worship
Bless the LORD, O my soul!
O LORD my God, you are very great!
You are clothed with splendor and majesty,
covering yourself with light as with a garment,
stretching out the heavens like a tent.
He set the earth on its foundations,
so that it should never be moved.
He makes springs gush forth in the valleys.
He causes the grass to grow for the livestock
and plants for man to cultivate.
He spread out the lights in the heavens,
and the wild beasts are fed by his hand.
O LORD, how manifold are your works!
In wisdom have you made them all;
the earth is full of your creatures.
I will sing to the LORD as long as I live;
I will sing praise to my God while I have being.
Bless the LORD, O my soul!
Praise the LORD!
— From Psalm 104
Merciful God, in your gracious presence
we confess our sin and the sin of this world.
Although Christ is among us as our peace,
we are a people divided against ourselves
as we cling to the values of a broken world.
The profit and pleasures we pursue
lay waste the land and pollute the seas.
The fears and jealousies that we harbor
set neighbor against neighbor
and nation against nation.
We abuse your good gifts of imagination and freedom,
of intellect and reason,
and turn them into bonds of oppression.
Lord, have mercy upon us;
heal and forgive us.
Set us free to serve you in the world
as agents of your reconciling love in Jesus Christ.
Come To Me
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Even the wilderness and desert will be glad in those days.
The wasteland will rejoice and blossom with wildflowers;
Yes, there will be an abundance of flowers
and singing and joy!
The deserts will become as green as the mountains of Lebanon,
as lovely as Mount Carmel or the plain of Sharon.
There the Lord will display his glory, the splendor of our God.
With this news, strengthen those who have tired hands,
and encourage those who have weak knees.
Say to those who have an anxious heart,
“Be strong; fear not!
Behold, your God
will come with vengeance,
with the recompense of God.
He will come and save you.”
Then the eyes of the blind shall be opened,
and the ears of the deaf unstopped;
then shall the lame man leap like a deer,
and the tongue of the mute sing for joy.
Springs will gush forth in the wilderness,
and streams will water the wasteland.
The parched ground will become a pool,
and springs of water will satisfy the thirsty land.
Marsh grass and reeds and rushes will flourish
where desert jackals once lived.
And a highway shall be there,
and it shall be called the Way of Holiness;
Evil-minded people will never travel on it.
It shall belong to those who walk on the way;
fools will never walk there.
Lions will not lurk along its course,
nor any other ferocious beasts.
There will be no other dangers.
Only the redeemed will walk on it.
Those who have been ransomed by the Lord will return.
They will enter Jerusalem singing,
crowned with everlasting joy.
Sorrow and mourning will disappear,
and they will be filled with joy and gladness.
— Isaiah 35
The God of peace,
who brought back from the dead our Lord Jesus,
the great shepherd of the sheep,
by the blood of the eternal covenant,
make you complete in everything good
so that you may do God’s will,
working among us that which is pleasing in God’s sight,
through Jesus Christ, to whom be the glory forever and ever!
—from Hebrews 13:20-21