Worship – October 4 – Coming Home

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 Isaiah 5 and Psalm 80)
Long ago a vineyard was planted.
The ground was prepared, and all was made ready.
But the vines grew wild,
the ground was unable to support the wild grapes.

What happened in that place of promise?
People forgot the One who planted the vineyard.
They chose their own ways and failed.

Let us again turn to the Lord,
who will again plant, prune, and cause us to grow in faithfulness.
Let us open our hearts to God,
trusting in God’s ways and God’s word.

Gathering Song – Come As You Are
Performed by SOTH Worship Team

Gathering Prayer – inspired by Isaiah 5: 1-7, Psalm 80
Most Gracious God
we greet you once again in this sacred space.
We have come because we need to be reminded
of your love and your expectations for our living.
We are like the vine you planted, watered and protected.
We know in our hearts
that we need, want and desire your presence in our lives.
So we come in worship and listen
for your Word to speak to our hearts
and reveal again your desires for us.

Scripture Readings

Reading – Intergenerational Ten Commandments – Exodus 20:1-20
Read by Gonzales Girls

Then God spoke all these words:
I am the Lord your God, who brought you out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of slavery; 3 you shall have no other gods before me.
God is God – even at school and home!

4 You shall not make for yourself an idol, whether in the form of anything that is in heaven above, or that is on the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth. 5 You shall not bow down to them or worship them
God is more important than anything – even grades or friends

7 You shall not make wrongful use of the name of the Lord your God
Always say God’s name with respect

Remember the sabbath day, and keep it holy. Six days you shall labor and do all your work. 10 But the seventh day is a sabbath to the Lord your God
Don’t get too busy for church and rest!

 12 Honor your father and your mother
Speak to and treat your father and mother with love

13 You shall not kill or injure
Don’t hurt anyone
      lookout for the younger kids

14 You shall not cheat in relationships.
Be a loyal friend

15 You shall not steal.
Do not steal
      either other people’s stuff or the answers on their work

16 You shall not bear false witness against your neighbor.
Don’t tell lies about other people
       either to get them in trouble or make yourself look good

17 You shall not covet anything that belongs to your neighbor.
Don’t get jealous of what others have or what they can do

Psalm Reading – Psalm 80:7-15
Restore us, O God of hosts;
let your face shine, that we may be saved.
You brought a vine out of Egypt;
you drove out the nations and planted it.

You cleared the ground for it;
it took deep root and filled the land.
The mountains were covered with its shade,
the mighty cedars with its branches;

it sent out its branches to the sea,
and its shoots to the River.
Why then have you broken down its walls,
so that all who pass along the way pluck its fruit?

The boar from the forest ravages it,
and all that move in the field feed on it.
Turn again, O God of hosts;
look down from heaven, and see;
have regard for this vine,
the stock that your right hand planted.

Gospel Reading – Matthew 21:33-46
The reading can be found here.
Read by Peggy Lairmore

Pastor Adam’s Message

Questions for Reflection
When have you experienced a homecoming?  How was it?

Do you feel like there is a community that has expectations of you?  What are they?

Do you have expectations of a certain community?  What are they?

How do you answer Jesus’ call to be bearers of fruit in your community?

Do you feel like you are helping making this place (church, neighborhood, city) a place that God would be proud of?

Centering Song – Reason
Lyrics can be found here.
Performed by Unspoken

Prayer of Thanksgiving
We give you all thanks and praise, O God,
for you have made us your own, through Christ Jesus,
and given us a new righteousness based on faith.

You created the entire universe:
the sky tells of your glory,
day and night reveal the genius of your ways.
You brought your people out of slavery
and gave them your laws and commandments,
that they might be rich in Spirit and clear in vision.

Though we repeatedly rejected your ways
and destroyed your messengers,
you sent your Son to us to renew heaven’s call.
Though the crowds recognized him as a prophet,
those who coveted his inheritance seized and killed him.
But you raised him from the dead,
and now through the power of his resurrection
he stands as the cornerstone of righteousness,
the first fruits of the kingdom,
and the incomparable prize towards which we press.

Therefore, with our hearts lifted high,
we offer you thanks and praise at all times
through Jesus Christ our Lord,
who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, for ever and ever.

Sending Song – Go My Children, With My Blessing
Lyrics can be found here.
Played by Donna Natseway

Creator God—
as we return now to our homes, workplaces, and communities,
may Your Spirit open our eyes anew
to the vastness and splendor of Your beauty all around us.

May we hear, and smell, and see, and touch
Your glory evident in all of Your creation.

Above all, let us see Your beauty
even in the brokenness of our brothers and sisters—
all of them, created in Your image,
and waiting to experience that redemption that comes
only through Christ Jesus our Lord.

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 from Worship Connection
Gathering Prayer – written by Henrietta Stith Andrews
Prayer of Thanksgiving – written by Nathan Nettleton – www.laughingbird.net
Blessing – written by Carlos Fernandez