How to Infect Your Neighbor

    For the Week beginning May 10, 2020

  • If you want a paper copy of the service bulletin that follows on-screen here, then . . .
  • An EXCITING video service just for children (and kids at heart) is found at the end of this service. Just scroll down!  (Thanks, LifeChurch!)  

 

The Prelude:  We Prepare Ourselves to Worship God

 

 We Gather Together
  • If you have family worshipping with you, give everyone a hug. 
  • If you are alone, take a moment and imagine the arms of the Loving Lord wrapped around you.  Send thoughts of love to those most important to you. 
  • Then, find a spot at your chosen place of worship.  Light your candle(s). 
  • Be silent for a moment, asking God to open your hearts to every good gift that God has for you today.

 

We Open with Prayer
  • (If possible, please pray out loud):  Glorious God, you call us to love and to serve, not only with words, but also in presence, actions, intentions and prayers. Lord, you surround us completely in time, in space, and in spirit. No matter where we go, no matter where we don't go, you still journey with us and use us to reveal your grace and mercy. We thank you, O Lord Jesus Christ, that there is no situation that prevents us from witnessing to your name and love. Amen.

 

We Sing a Song of Praise:  "Rescuer"   Rend Collective (c) 2017

You can sing along with a music video (or just listen) by clicking on the image below.

 

We Call Each Other to Worship

(If possible, read out loud.  If you are not alone, take turns reading the lines)

(From Christine Sine):

Hold your head high! Christ has risen,
Bringing God’s healing.
Christ has come, bringing us salvation,
Calling us to life.
God’s eternal world has begun,
And now love reigns over all.
Hallelujah, Hallelujah, Hallelujah!
Shout the good news to all!

We Pass the Peace of God to Others

If you are with others in your home, give each other a hug, and pray for those who will not have any human touch today.

If you are alone, ask the Holy Spirit to bring to your mind at least one person who needs a call or email or card.  Commit to following through on this as soon as this worship service ends.  (If you have others in your household, they can do this, too).

 We Read the Bible:  Acts 13:44-52
(The Message, Copyright © 1993, 2002, 2018 by Eugene H. Peterson)

 

(If possible, read these verses put loud)

44-45 When the next Sabbath came around, practically the whole city showed up to hear the Word of God. Some of the Jews, seeing the crowds, went wild with jealousy and tore into Paul, contradicting everything he was saying, making an ugly scene.

46-47 But Paul and Barnabas didn’t back down. Standing their ground they said, “It was required that God’s Word be spoken first of all to you, the Jews. But seeing that you want no part of it—you’ve made it quite clear that you have no taste or inclination for eternal life—the door is open to all the outsiders. And we’re on our way through it, following orders, doing what God commanded when he said,

I’ve set you up
    as light to all nations.
You’ll proclaim salvation
    to the four winds and seven seas!”

48-49 When the non-Jewish outsiders heard this, they could hardly believe their good fortune. All who were marked out for real life put their trust in God—they honored God’s Word by receiving that life. And this Message of salvation spread like wildfire all through the region.

50-52 Some of the Jews convinced the most respected women and leading men of the town that their precious way of life was about to be destroyed. Alarmed, they turned on Paul and Barnabas and forced them to leave. Paul and Barnabas shrugged their shoulders and went on to the next town, Iconium, brimming with joy and the Holy Spirit, two happy disciples.

++This is the word of God for the children of God:  Thanks be to God!

 

We  Sing a Song of Devotion:  “Go Tell It On The Mountain"  UMH #251

 Hey, we all need a little Christmas spirit throughout the year!  :)  Experience this or sing along by clicking the image below.  The musical score is located in your printed version.

 

We Testify to God's Grace

“It's Never Too Late (or too early) To Share Good News”

(from The Upper Room, from Saturday, June 5, 2019 -- Nancy Lewis Shelton, Missouri)

"Let no one despise your youth, but set the believers an example in speech and conduct, in love, in faith, in purity." - 1 Timothy 4:12 (NRSV)

As I watched Lainie, my 15-year-old granddaughter, walk out of Central High School, I noticed that she was wearing a cross necklace and had John 3:16 printed on her shirt. On the way to drop off her friend Jeannie, I listened to the girls chat about an after-school Christian meeting and Lainie’s church youth group. Then, Lainie reminded Jeannie to be ready for a ride to church Sunday morning.

I compared Lainie’s actions with my own at this same high school years before. Although a Christian, I had been too worried about embarrassment or criticism to share my faith. And I hadn’t done so in the years since. But that day, I resolved to follow Lainie’s example. I prayed for help to overcome my fears. Soon, my simple acts — such as wearing a shirt with a Christian message, offering to pray with someone, or comforting a hurting friend — prompted conversations about God’s love. I found ways to encourage new worshipers, invite others to church, and help with my church’s many mission projects.

The more I risked, the more opportunities I had to witness to others. God calls each of us to spread the gospel, even if it means facing rejection or criticism. No matter our age or situation, God will lead us to serve others by showing them the way to Christ.

We Hear the Sermon from Pastor Thomas:  "How to Infect Your Neighbor"
We Reflect in Silence

(Take one minute to consider today's scripture, reflection, and sermon.  Have you ever thought about how important and powerful is the word of God?  Have you ever thought about how important and powerful YOU are, and how strongly your life “infects” the lives of others—for good or ill?)

 

We Pray to the Lord

(with Dallas Willard's paraphrase of the Lord's Prayer)

(If possible, please pray out loud)

 God, today I (we) pray . . .

    • for the people of Hope United Methodist Church, and especially ...
      • See Barbara’s email prayer list for congregational requests.  To receive the email list, please reach out to healing@hopefortulsa.com
      • We especially pray for our members and friends who are in nursing homes and rehab centers.
    • for those who suffer and those in trouble, and especially...
    • for the concerns of this local community, and especially...
    • for the world, its peoples, and its civic leaders, and for the earth that you have given to our care, and especially ...
    • for the battle we are facing with COVID-19, we pray:

      • O Lord, the Bible says, “where two or three are gathered.”
        But many, in this moment, will gather no closer than six feet.
        The Bible says, “they were all gathered together in one place.”
        But we do not know when we will be together next.
        Triune God, you exist in eternal relationship.
        You are One and yet are three.
        In a time of isolation, draw us closer to this mystery.
        May it remind us of your truth:
        That even in physical isolation, we are never truly alone.
        Your love links us together, making us a people. Our lives still impact others' lives.
        For the Bible also says:
        We belong to each other. We belong to you.
        Even now. Especially now. Thank you, Jesus. Amen.”
    • for the Church universal—its leaders, its members, and its mission. We especially pray for Bishop Nunn, for our District Superintendent Cindy Havlik, and for our new Superintendent coming this summer, Connie Gibson.  We also pray for those serving in medical missions around the world, and for other Christian leaders, including...
    • in communion with the saints, remembering all those who have gone on before us, and now form part of the great Hall of Faith which encourages those of us who remain on earth.  Today we especially remember . . .
    • For my (our) needs today, which include . . .

Help me (us) remember, Lord, that you are merciful and good, and quick to act in times of need.  I (We) thank you for all of your many blessings that you graciously give to us and to the world you love.

Therefore, as your child (children) on earth, I (we) pray the prayer that our Brother Jesus taught us to pray:

Dear Father always near us,
may your name be treasured and loved,
may your rule be completed in us-
may your will be done here on earth in
just the way it is done in heaven.
Give us today the things we need today,
and forgive us our sins and impositions on you
as we are forgiving all who in any way offend us.
Please don’t put us through trials,
but deliver us from everything bad.
Because you are the one in charge,
and you have all the power, and the glory, too, is all yours --forever--
which is just the way we want it!

We Give Gifts to the Lord

Even during COVID-19, the work of Hope United Methodist Church continues!  Please take a moment to remember all the many blessings God has given you, and then go to www.hopefortulsa.com/give to make an online donation.  It's simple to sign up--just have your checkbook, debit card or credit card ready to provide the requested information.  You just have to do this one time.  You can continue to use this online portal in the weeks ahead to bless your church and your Lord. 

If you'd like to mail a check instead, please make it out to "Hope UMC" and send it to:  Hope UMC, 12424 E. 31st St., Tulsa, OK  74146.  All donations are tax-deductible.  And thank you in advance!

 

We Say What We Believe

(If possible, read this out loud):

(based on Luke 21, by Bruce Prewer, adapted)

When nation rises against nation, and kingdom against kingdom,

the end is not violence:

for there is a God of resilient, redeeming love,

   and the Brighter Purpose is at work in the shadows,

      and the darkness cannot smother it.

Lord we believe, strengthen our timid faith.

 

When there are earthquakes, famines and pestilences

and collisions among the stars,

the end is not chaos:

God the Creator of the heavens and the earth has not forsaken us,

   and the harmony will again break out and gather

      to hasten towards consummation.

Lord we believe, strengthen our timid faith.

 

When believers are arrested and abused,

dragged before kings and governors,

the end is not injustice:

the Holy Spirit is always with us in all our trials and travail,

   and words will be given to confound our adversaries

      and shake the gates of hell.

Lord we believe, strengthen our timid faith.

 

When parents, brothers, sisters, relatives or friends,

betray us even unto death,

the end is not alienation:

   the crucified Christ will reconcile all things seen and unseen,

      and the glorious finale is much nearer than when we first believed.

Lord we believe, strengthen our timid faith.

 

We Sing about Our Commitment to be Followers of Jesus:  "Pass It On"  UMH #572

Experience this or sing along by clicking the image below:

 

We Pray a Prayer of Blessing

(Read aloud if possible:)  Lord Jesus, allow your servants to go in peace.  We have experienced the love that you offer to everyone.  Heal and strengthen us as we seek to serve others in your name.  Amen.

(Now, please take a moment to write and mail a note, send an email, or make a phone call to someone that needs a touch of human connection today. 

Remember:  your words may be the only word of God someone hears today!

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Enjoy this LOOP Show Worship-at-Home-for-Kids Video from LifeChurch!

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