Sunday, June 05, 2011

The Way We Worship Together: June 5, 2011

Thank you to the wonderful Hope Spicer for this week's photos! This is also posted at

Since Easter, we've been fellowshipping in Main Street underneath white drapes,
symbolizing we are people of the Resurrection.  Today, Ascension Sunday, red drapes
 have been inserted to prepare us for the celebration of Pentecost Sunday next week.
 The color red has historically symbolized the tongues of fire that entered the room
where the Apostles prayed, waiting for the arrival of the Holy Spirit.

Welcome to a weekly overview of Union Center Christian Church's Sunday  morning service.  You’ll not only read a list of the songs we led following the Call To Worship, but also the readings and prayers from our pattern of worship (aka, the liturgy).

For the next several weeks, we'll be enjoying artwork from
 a Union Center artist friend, Laurel Rudd.
You can find links to the set lists of this church and many other churches each week in the Worship Blog Carnival at theworshipcommunity.comYou can learn about some of the songs we sing at Union Center each week in advance of the Sunday service by reading the Getting Ready For Sunday”  post each Thursday.

Words of Greeting & Passing the Peace
Pastor Sal welcomed us as those gathered by God and encouraged us to greet each other.  He reminded us to meet and greet Allyson W., our missionary in Asia in a reception following the service.  As we began our corporate gathering of worship, he also reminded us of the significance of Ascension and Pentecost Sundays.

Call to Worship
Beau read to us an Old Testament account of God's people being led into battle with the act of worship.  He encouraged us on this Ascension Sunday to enter worship as those being led into battle by a risen, ascended, triumphant Christ. 

Song: Our God, written by Matt Redman, Jonas Myrin, Chris Tomlin & Jesse Reeves. A new-to-us worship anthem celebrating the triumph and wonder of a God who is for us.  Listen to the song on YouTube.

Song: Victory Chant, written by Joseph Vogels. A wonderful call & response song that the team led with drums and a capella voices only.  Listen to the song on YouTube.

     Hail, hail Lion of Judah!  
     How powerful You are...

Song: Raise Up the Crown/ All Hail the Power of Jesus' Name, written by Edward Perronet and Oliver Holden with new arrangement and additional chorus from Chris Tomlin. A good Ascension hymn, indeed! Listen to a sample of the song.

    All hail the power of Jesus' name, let angels prostrate fall.
    Bring forth the royal diadem and crown Him Lord of all.

Words of Confession
Lori led us in a corporate prayer of confession:
Lord we confess that though we might hail you as King with our mouths that we do not crown you Lord with our hearts and lives. We are more concerned at building our own kingdoms rather than serving in yours. But is for our treason that you came. It was for our restoration that You gave up your Heavenly Throne, took on flesh and died in our place, welcoming us to share in your glorious kingdom by your sacrifice.
Lord, humble us before your throne of grace.
Help us to lay at your feet all that we have and all that we are,
trusting you to forgive what is sinful, to heal what is broken,
to welcome our praises, and to receive us as your own. Amen. (thank you to Sojourn Church in Louisville, KY for sharing their written liturgy with us.)

Song: Amazing Love (You Are My King), written by Billy James Foote.

Words of Assurance

(Philippians 2:5-11)
Have this mind among yourselves, which is yours in Christ Jesus,6 who, though he was in the form of God, did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped, 7but made himself nothing, taking the form of a servant, being born in the likeness of men. 8And being found in human form, he humbled himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross.9 Therefore God has  highly exalted him and bestowed on him the name that is above every name,10so that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth,11and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is  Lord, to the glory of God the Father.

Congregation: Let us give joyful thanks to the Father, who has qualified us to share in the inheritance of his holy people in the kingdom of light. For he has rescued us from the dominion of darkness and brought us into the kingdom of the Son he loves, in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins. – Colossians 1:12-14

Song: Filled With Your Glory,  written by John Neufeld and Tim Neufeld. Listen to the song on YouTube.

Song: The Lord Reigns, written by Klaus Keuhn.  Listen to the song on YouTube

please notice that Billy is playing along on harmonica!
Prayer of Thanksgiving and Giving
The appropriate response to our Creator and Redeemer is to give from all we have - heart, soul, mind, strength, gifts and resources.

Life at the Center (ministry updates)
Pastor Sal gave us a Transition Journey updates, including important details for Pastor John and Cheri's farewell celebration on June 26. He then introduced today's guest speaker, Dr. Rex DumDum.

In his own passionate way, Pastor Rex encouraged us at Union Center in our quest to be like the prophet Isaiah's metaphor of a well-watered garden, good soil for God to plant oaks of righteousness.  

As a bonus:  not all of you who read this post will understand the "inside joke" of this picture, but I've decided to post it anyway!  Around these parts, this is known as the "Pastor Rex happy dance"!

Words of Sending and Benediction
Pastor Sal prayed a blessing over us as we scatter back out into our homes, neighborhoods, schools and work places.  We leave blessed to be a blessing.

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