TGUC Worship 21-02-21

Sermon – God Meets Us At The Threshold
TrinityGrace United Church
Reading – Psalm 25 and Mark 1 Chapter 9, 15-1

Again &Again, God meets us

February 21st, 2021


Land Acknowledgment

Minute for Mission

Preparing to Worship
Video Intro:    Wait for the Lord


Call to Worship (One/All)
Today we are invited into the story,
into this space,
into this time of worship.

We are invited Into reflection,
Into community,
Into our own spiritual journeys.

The broken and bruised, the hopeful, the new,
the faithful, the doubting, the wondering, the waiying.
We are invited—and when we answer,
God meets us at the threshold—

At the edge of the water,
At the beginning of the wilderness,
At the start of something new, on the edge of faith.

So listen, trust the invitation, and bring your whole self.
We are invited and welcomed here.


Christ there is no east or west,
In him no south or north;
But one great family of love
Throughout the whole wide earth.

In him shall true hearts everywhere
Their high communion find;
His service is the golden cord
Close binding humankind.

Join hands, then, people of the faith
Whate’er your race may be;
All children of the living
God Are surely kin to me.

Christ now meet both east and west,
In him meet south and north;
All Christ-like souls are one in him
Throughout the whole wide earth.

Opening Prayer: (One/All)
Holy God,
We know that you are near,
For you are always here, gathered among us, just a breath away.
And despite knowing your nearness, we still stumble over ourselves,
unsure of how to pray.

Bring our hearts into the room.

So often we talk to you like a stranger,
Praying prayers of small talk about the weather and surface level concerns.
We keep genuine fear and doubt tucked into corners, out of sight, out of mind.

Bring our hearts into the room.

You were with Jesus at his baptism. You were with him in the wilderness.
And even in between, you were there, saying aloud, “This is my beloved.”
We know that you are with us too—
in the good, the bad, and everything in between—
But so oben we act like we are alone.
How can we long for a deeper relationship with you
while living like you are nowhere to be found?

Forgive our self-centered ways.

Remind us that in every breath, in every step, you are there.
You are the God who meets us where we are.

Before and behind, above and below, within and around.
You are here, God. We are here. We want to begin again.

Bring our hearts into the room. Amen.

Words of Assurance


1st Reading: Psalm 25 (selected verses)

To you, O Lord, I lift up my soul.
O my God, in you I trust; do not let me be put to shame;
Make me to know your ways; teach me your paths.
Lead me in your truth, and teach me, for you are the God of my salvation;
for you I wait all day long.
Be mindful of your mercy, O Holy One, and of your steadfast love,
for they have been from of old.
Do not remember the sins of my youth or my transgressions;
according to your steadfast love remember me, for your goodness’ sake.
God instructs sinners in the way, leading the humble in what is right.
All the paths of the Lord are steadfast love and faithfulness,
for those who keep God’s covenant and decrees.
Turn to me and be gracious to me, O God, for I am lonely and afflicted.
Relieve the troubles of my heart, and bring me out of my distress.
Consider my affliction and my trouble, and forgive all my sins.
O guard my life, and deliver me; for I take refuge in you.

2nd Reading: Gospel of Mark (ch.1: 9-15)

9In those days Jesus came from Nazareth of Galilee and was baptized by John in the Jordan. 10And just as he was coming up out of the water, he saw the heavens torn apart and the Spirit descending like a dove on him. 11And a voice came from heaven, “You are my Son, the Beloved; with you I am well pleased.”

12And the Spirit immediately drove him out into the wilderness.

13He was in the wilderness forty days, tempted by Satan; and he was with the wild beasts; and the angels waited on him.

14Now aber John was arrested, Jesus came to Galilee, proclaiming the good news of God, 15and saying, “The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God has come near; repent, and believe in the good news.”

   For the Word in scripture,
   For the Word among us,
   For the Word within us,
   Thanks be to God.

Hymn: THERE IS A BALM IN GILEAD      (Voices United 612)
There is a balm in Gilead
To make the wounded whole
There is a balm in Gilead
To heal the sin-sick soul.

1Sometimes I feel discouraged,
and think my work’s in vain,
the the Holy Spirit revives my soul again.


2If you cannot preach like Peter,
if thou cannot pray like like Paul,
you can tell the love of Jesus
and say, “He died for all.”


The Prayers of the People
Prayers for the world and for our community are offered.

The Prayer of the Disciples (The Lord’s Prayer)

Our loving God,
Author of all creation
Hallowed be your name.
Your kin-dom come,
Your will be done
On earth as in heaven.

Give us today our daily bread,
and forgive us our sins
as we forgive those who sin against us.
Save us from the time of trial,
and deliver us from evil.
For the kin-dom, the power
and the glory are yours,
now and forever. Amen.


To the desert Jesus came,
to wrestle and to seek God’s way.
Sun and moon rose high above
to watch him as he’d fast and pray.
Together through the valley,
the tempter led him around.
Together through the valley,
so Jesus answers found.

Like the Hebrews long ago
who ventured through the desert sand,
did he find a rock of faith,
where streams of living waters ran?
Together through the valley,
so shall we make our way.
Together through the valley,
we’ll walk for forty days.

In the desert we may find
the mystery of who we are.
Following a faithful God,
so very close and yet so far.
Together through the valley,
we’ll gather our dreams in prayer;
Together through the valley,
and fund God’s presence there.

From the ashes to the hill,
we’ll travel on our Lenten road.
Hand in hand we’ll cross this sand,
and share each other’s heavy load.
Together through the valley,
we’ll watch the changing sky;
Together through the valley,
as Easter’s dawn draws nigh.


As we leave this space today,
May your mouth speak of God’s goodness.
May your arms hold those in need.
May your feet walk toward justice.
May your heart trust its worth.
May your soul dance in God’s grace.
And may this be your rhythm—
Again and again and again,
Until God’s promised day.

In the name of the Lover, the Beloved, and Love itself,
Go with courage, go with heart, go in peace.


May the God of Peace”   MV 224            Trad. Song, Benin
May the God of peace, and of all good,
May the God of peace, and all love,
Be always with you. Amen !
May God’s peace be with you. Amen !