Thirtieth Sunday in Ordinary Time C, October 23, 2016

Joel 2:23-32
Psalm 65:1-13
2 Timothy 4:6-8, 16-18
Luke 18:9-14

CALL TO WORSHIP
One: O children of Zion, be glad and rejoice in the LORD your God.
All: We gather to witness the Spirit poured out on all flesh.
One: O that our sons and daughters shall prophesy, our old shall dream dreams, and our young shall see visions.
All: Today let us come out of the past and look towards God’s future for us.
One: Praise is due to you, O God, in Zion; and to you our vows performed.
All: To God be the glory forever and ever. Amen.

OPENING PRAYER
O Holy One, we think too much of ourselves and don’t rely on you.  We forget to be humble.  We forget that you are the one who sends us dreams and visions that are not selfish.  We forget that this whole world spins because of you.  Remind us today, we humbly ask, of what it means to live in your glory, to be your children.  Amen.

CALL TO CONFESSION
We have nothing to say that hasn’t been said or done before.  But we have a Lord who for some reason still listens.  Come, be humble, and seek the justification of our God.

PRAYER OF CONFESSION
O Gracious God, too often we pray: “I thank you that I am not like other people: thieves, rogues, adulterers, or even like this sinner here. I go to church every week; I give a tenth of all my income.  I thank you that I am so great and deserve all that I have.”  But those words are displeasing to your ears.  Instead help us be true to who we are.  Instead we stand here, our heads bowed – not daring to get close.  Instead we say “God, be merciful to me, a sinner!”  Instead we come before you humbled today.  Forgive us, please.  Help us be new people in you.  Amen.

ASSURANCE OF PARDON
The Psalmist says to the Lord: “When deeds of iniquity overwhelm us, you forgive our transgressions… By awesome deeds you answer us with deliverance, O God of our salvation; you are the hope of all the ends of the earth and of the farthest seas.”  Dear ones, live in this salvation.  Live in this hope.  Know that in the name of Jesus Christ your sins are forgiven.  Now go and sin no more.

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