Worship – October 11 – Best Coat Ever

Welcome to Shepherd of the Hill’s online worship! We are thankful that you have come to this corner of the internet for some of God’s Word and time for reflection and worship. As you engage the below worship service, you are encouraged to quiet the world around you. Turn off or silence your phone. Find a quiet spot in your house or outdoors.

The service is approximately 30 minutes in length if you follow all the pieces. Songs have been contributed by our Worship Team and our traditional service pianist. Our lectors have recorded the readings. Pastor Adam has recorded a sermon for viewing. There is also liturgy (litanies, prayers, calls to worship) contained in the service. If you are worshiping with someone, please share the reading of these pieces with them.

Call to Worship – (inspired by Psalm 23)
In the darkest valley,
at the banquet table;
in the hard work of life,
at the moments of ease;
in our day-to-day reality,
at times set aside–
like this time, now–
for worship, for listening, for paying attention;
with every step we take:
goodness and mercy follow us;
our cups overflow.

Gathering Song – You Never Let Go
Performed by SOTH Worship Team

Gathering Prayer – Based on Psalm 23 and Matthew 22: 1-14
Gracious God,
in love You open wide the doors
and welcome us into Your presence—
saints and sinners alike.
You spread a table before us,
filled with the richest fare—
a feast of love and mercy
for the body and soul.

We come with joy to meet You here,
to eat and drink at Your table,
to taste and see Your goodness,
to celebrate Your grace and mercy in our lives.
May Your Spirit inspire our praise and thanksgiving,
our prayers and petitions
as we worship together in Your presence.

In the name of Jesus Christ, our host and Lord,

Scripture Readings

Reading – Philippians 4:1-9
The reading can be found here.
Read by Vicki Carroll

Psalm Reading – Psalm 23
The Lord is my shepherd, I shall not want.
    He makes me lie down in green pastures;
he leads me beside still waters
    he restores my soul.
He leads me in right paths
    for his name’s sake.

Even though I walk through the darkest valley,
    I fear no evil;
for you are with me;
    your rod and your staff—
    they comfort me.

You prepare a table before me
    in the presence of my enemies;
you anoint my head with oil;
    my cup overflows.

Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me
    all the days of my life,
and I shall dwell in the house of the Lord
    my whole life long.

Gospel Reading – Matthew 22:1-14
The reading can be found here.
Read by Kathy Ryan

Pastor Adam’s Message

Questions for Discussion:
Describe a time when you were dressed extravagantly and correctly for an occasion. What does it feel like to be clothed with the right layers or equipment?

Describe a time when you were unprepared in your dress for an occasion. What does it feel like to lack the appropriate layers or equipment?

How is the reality of being “clothed” in God’s grace reflected in your life?

When have you tried (successfully or unsuccessfully) to not wear the gift of grace?

Should Pastor Adam sell a kidney so he can buy an Arc’teryx Beta Jacket?

Centering Song – Let Us Go Now to the Banquet – ELW 523
Performed by Mary Mouat Munson

Prayers of Intercession
God, we come into Your presence
   with praise and thanksgiving for Your faithful love.
Your love never fails—not even we turn away from You:
   when we ignore Your invitation,
   or desert You for gods of our own making.
Even then You do not abandon us,
   but reach out—again and again—
   inviting us back into relationship once more.

As You welcome us, so You welcome our prayers.
We bring them to You with confidence,
   knowing that You will hear and answer.

We pray for the world You created, and the people who share it with us:
   – for countries caught up in war or violent conflict,
    – for regions of the world struggling with increased cases of COVID-19,
   – for those whose homes and lives are threatened by natural disaster;
For these and all the other areas in our world
   where there is need and despair,
Lord, hear our prayer.

We pray for our country and for its people:
   – for our government leaders, federal and local,
   – for our judicial system, police forces and military,
   – for our cities, towns, and rural communities,
   – for employers and employees, for young and old,
For all who are part of this great country,
Lord, hear our prayer.

We pray for our local community—the people of this city/town,
   – for those who are unemployed,
   – for those in prison,
   – for those who are hungry,
   – for those who are alone and afraid,
For all our neighbors, both known and unknown to us,
Lord, hear our prayer.

We pray for this congregation—our brothers and sisters in Christ,
   – for those who are ill. or whose loved ones are ill,
   – for those who are anxious about the future,
   – for those struggling with their faith,
   – for those who minister among us,
For all Your people in this place,
Lord, hear our prayer.

Pour out Your Spirit on us!
Fix our hearts and minds on what is true and honorable and right.
Give us the joy and peace that comes from knowing and doing Your will.
Keep us faithful to the call we have received in Christ Jesus, our Lord,
   extending Your loving invitation to the world around us.
In Jesus’ name.  Amen.

Sending Song – Sent Forth by God’s Blessing
Performed by Sheryl Wood

Go forth,
strengthened to do the work of Christ,
standing in the gap,
extending the invitation to the eternal banquet,
rejoicing in God.
Let your gentleness be known to everyone
and don’t worry about anything.
The God who created you,
the Christ who redeems you
and the Spirit who empowers you
is with you today and ever more.

Giving and Offering
Shepherd of the Hills is very blessed and grateful for your continued financial support during this difficult time of physical distancing required by the COVID-19 pandemic. Your giving allows us to continue to provide worship, support and outreach until it is safe to gather in person again. We realize that the pandemic has caused many financial challenges. As your finances allow, please consider continuing to support our shared ministries.

There are two ways to give:
– Mail your tithe or offering to the church office. The office will remain open for normal business hours.
– Give online! Our online giving is secure and fully operational. It can be found here.

Thank you again for helping us continue to spread God’s Word and help those in need during these challenging times.  

Call to Worship – Written by Joanna Harader and posted on Spacious Faith
Prayers of Intercession – Written by ~ Christine Longhurst, re: Worship
Blessing – Written by Rev. Dr. Bob Gross, OCC