CCL 125049 Charity No SC002937
- Hymn 129 The Lord is King! Lift up your voice Tune – Church Triumphant (Church Hymnary 4th Edition)
- All age time
- Reading Matthew 13: 1-9 (Good News Bible)
- Hymn 540 I heard the voice of Jesus say Tune The Rowan Tree or Kingsfold (Church Hymnary 4th Edition)
- Prayer for others
- Hymn 595 O breath of life come sweeping through us Tune – Sunset (Church Hymnary 4th Edition)
Welcome and let us worship God
‘The grass may wither, the flower fade, but the word of our God will endure for ever.’Isaiah40: 8
1 The Lord is King! lift up your voice!
Let earth and all the heavens rejoice.
From world to world the joy shall ring,
‘The Lord omnipotent is King!’
2 The Lord is King! who then shall dare
resist his will, distrust his care,
or murmur at his wise decrees,
or doubt his royal promises?
3 The Lord is King! child of the dust,
the judge of all the earth is just;
holy and true are all his ways:
let every creature speak his praise.
4 Come, make your wants, your burdens known;
Christ will present them at the throne;
for he is at the Father’s side,
the Man of Love, the Crucified.
5 One Lord, one empire, all secures;
he reigns, and life and death are yours;
through earth and heaven one song shall ring,
‘The Lord omnipotent is King!’
All age time (for ages 0-100)
- Today’s Bible story
In today’s Bible story Jesus tells one of his well-known stories, about a farmer sowing seeds (the old-fashioned way of throwing handfuls to the left, and then to the right). It illustrates that sometimes we do things and there is no response, for a variety of reasons. But sometimes there will be a big impact
- Something to make
– Sow some seeds (it is a bit late in the season for most things, but cress grows quickly)
– Make a picture , either drawing flowers, or using materials like coloured paper, drinking straws, aluminium foil, sweet wrappers etc to make a collage
– Press some flowers to make a picture later in the year
- Something to think about
How do I feel when I do things and there is nothing to show for my hard work? How do I feel when there are obvious results? Is there anything I can do to improve the ‘nothing to show’ results?
You are always with us
always around us
you see and know the thoughts of our hearts
you understand our fears and worries
you see the thoughts we try to keep hidden
but still you surround us with your love
you seek the best for us
you seek to shield and protect us
you stand with us in our times of difficulty
You are our guide through life
you have told us what to do, and what not to do
you have given us the example of Jesus to follow
you have given us your Spirit to help us
You prepare the path for us
you have a plan and a purpose for each of us
you lead us into situations where you need us
you help and equip us to cope there
But we are not always aware of you
or your goodness to us
we do not always appreciate it
we do not take the opportunities you give us
we do not seek to know and do your will
we do not live by Jesus’ example or teaching
we have those thoughts that you know only too well
Help us to open our lives to you
to let your Spirit change us into more Christ-like people
to listen for your voice leading us to the task you have for us
to be ready to take the opportunities that you give us
Through Christ our Lord we pray
Matthew 13: 1-9
That same day Jesus left the house and went to the lake-side, where he sat down to teach. The crowd that gathered round him was so large that he got into a boat and sat in it, while the crowd stood on the shore. He used parables to tell them many things.
“Once there was a man who went out to sow corn. As he scattered the seed in the field, some of it fell along the path, and the birds came and ate it up. Some of it fell on rocky ground where there was little soil. The seeds soon sprouted, because the soil wasn’t deep. But when the sun came up, it burnt the young plants; and because the roots had not grown deep enough, the plants soon dried up. Some of the seed fell among thorn bushes, which grew up and choked the plants. But some seeds fell in good soil, and the plants produced corn; some produced a hundred grains, others sixty, and others thirty.”
Jesus concluded, “Listen, then, if you have ears!”
1 I heard the voice of Jesus say,
‘Come unto me and rest;
lay down, thou weary one, lay down
thy head upon my breast’:
I came to Jesus as I was,
so weary, worn, and sad;
I found in him a resting-place,
and he has made me glad.
2 I heard the voice of Jesus say,
‘Behold, I freely give
the living water; thirsty one,
stoop down and drink, and live’:
I came to Jesus, and I drank
of that life-giving stream;
my thirst was quenched, my soul revived,
and now I live in him.
3 I heard the voice of Jesus say,
‘I am this dark world’s Light;
Look unto me, thy morn shall rise,
and all thy day be bright’:
I looked to Jesus, and I found
in him my Star, my Sun;
and in that light of life I’ll walk,
till travelling days are done.
What one of the disciples may have been thinking when he heard Jesus telling the Parable of the Sower:
“If he’s out in a boat on the lake, why are we getting a story about a farmer? He always tells stories about farmers, but none of us are farmers. Peter and Andrew, James and John are fisherman, but we never get Parables about fishermen. Matthew was a tax collector, but we don’t get stories about tax collectors. Nor stories about carpenters, nor landlords, nor dealers, nor any of the jobs we do – just farmers and stories set in the Ambridge of the Holy Land! I haven’t a clue how to grow corn or run a farm.
“I suppose I have to concede that a story about a farmer is quite visual and easy to remember. Try telling a story that begins, “Once there was a man walked into a property agents office..’ I know I’d switch off, let alone everyone else.
“I do have a garden at home. It’s not big, just a bit of land behind the house. We grow some fruit and veg, a few herbs and salad leaves. It adds bits to the dinner table, and ekes out my income. I know that at times we have trouble with pigeons and other birds eating shoots as they pop up. Sometimes the soil is too poor for a young plant to establish itself, and sometimes the weeds choke out the plants – attack the weed and you get the plant too. So maybe, with a bit of thought, I can relate to the story of the farmer.
“It’s funny how Jesus seems to observe what is going on around him. He notices things, spots details, that the rest of us overlook. He obviously thinks about them, and sees a story, a message in them. He leaves you with a picture in your mind, and something to think about.
“I wonder if there is a lesson there for me? Should I be observant, noticing the world round about me, instead of focussing on myself all the time? Should I try to see stories and parables in everyday things around me – for me to think about, and maybe even to share?”
Prayers for others
For most of us
farms are things to look at when we are in the country
food is something that we buy at the shops
we are not involved in the process of growing crops or caring for livestock
But for those who are involved in those processes
there are many issues to worry them
animal sickness or crop blight
Farmers here may face challenges
but farmers in some Developing countries face even worse ones
We pray for them all
for all who involved in making policies
about or affecting food production
about the environment and its protection
for the wider agricultural sector
We pray for all who are ill,
those who look after them
and those who worry about them
those waiting for or receiving treatment
and those for whom there is no treatment
those who are lonely, feeling down, or grieving a friend or loved one
those who are worried about home, work or money
a friend or a relative
those who are living with the after-effects of natural disasters
those who do not have enough to eat, or somewhere to call home
those who long to live in peace and safety
those who have fled from their homes seeking safety
We pray for the Queen, the Government
all in positions of leadership in this and every land
We pray for your church
our own congregation
the wider church in Dumbarton
the world-wide church
We bring to you our prayers for people and situations of special concern to us
And we sum up our prayers in the words of the prayer Jesus gave us
Our Father, who art in heaven,
hallowed be thy name;
thy kingdom come;
thy will be done;
on earth as it is in heaven.
Give us this day our daily bread.
And forgive us our debts,
as we forgive our debtors.
And lead us not into temptation;
but deliver us from evil.
For thine is the kingdom,
the power, and the glory, for ever. Amen
1 O Breath of Life, come sweeping through us,
revive your Church with life and power;
O Breath of Life, come, cleanse, renew us,
and fit your Church to meet this hour.
2 O Wind of God, come bend us, break us,
till humbly we confess our need:
then in your tenderness remake us,
revive, restore; for this we plead.
3 O Breath of Love, come breathe within us,
renewing thought and will and heart:
come, Love of Christ, afresh to win us,
revive your Church in every part.
4 Revive us, Lord! is zeal abating
while harvest fields are vast and white?
Revive us, Lord, the world is waiting,
equip your Church to spread the light.
God the Father sends you out
to be his witnesses wherever you go
to work to bring healing and wholeness in all you do
and the blessing of God Almighty
Father, Son, and Holy Spirit,
rest and remain with you, today, and every day, and for ever. Amen