OREMUS: 8 February 2012

Steve Benner steve.benner at oremus.org
Tue Feb 7 17:00:01 GMT 2012

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OREMUS for February 8

Lord, open our lips,
and our mouth shall proclaim your praise.

The servant of God took our infirmities
and bore our diseases.
Let us worship God.

All thanks and praise be yours
at all times and in all places, 
our true and loving God; 
through Jesus Christ, your eternal Word, 
the Wisdom from on high by whom you created all things. 
You laid the foundations of the world 
and enclosed the sea when it burst out from the womb; 
you brought forth all creatures of the earth 
and gave breath to humankind. 
Wondrous are you, Holy One of Blessing, 
all you create is a sign of hope for our journey; 
and so as the morning stars sing your praises 
we join the heavenly beings and all creation as we shout for joy: 
Blessed be God for ever!

An opening canticle may be sung. 

Psalm 41

Happy are they
who consider the poor and needy!*
 the Lord will deliver them
 in the time of trouble. 
The Lord preserves them
and keeps them alive,
so that they may be happy in the land;*
 he does not hand them over
 to the will of their enemies. 
The Lord sustains them on their sick-bed*
 and ministers to them in their illness. 
I said, 'Lord, be merciful to me;*
 heal me, for I have sinned against you.' 
My enemies are saying
wicked things about me:*
 'When will he die and his name perish?' 
Even if they come to see me,
they speak empty words;*
 their heart collects false rumours;
 they go outside and spread them. 
All my enemies whisper together about me*
 and devise evil against me. 
'A deadly thing', they say,
'has fastened on him;*
 he has taken to his bed
 and will never get up again.' 
Even my best friend, whom I trusted,
who broke bread with me,*
 has lifted up his heel and turned against me. 
But you, O Lord, 
be merciful to me and raise me up,*
 and I shall repay them. 
By this I know you are pleased with me,*
 that my enemy does not triumph over me. 
In my integrity you hold me fast,*
 and shall set me before your face for ever. 
Blessed be the Lord God of Israel,*
 from age to age. Amen. Amen. 

Psalm 42

As the deer longs for the water-brooks,*
 so longs my soul for you, O God. 
My soul is athirst for God,
athirst for the living God;*
 when shall I come to appear
 before the presence of God? 
My tears have been my food day and night,*
 while all day long they say to me,
 'Where now is your God?' 
I pour out my soul
when I think on these things:*
 how I went with the multitude
 and led them into the house of God, 
With the voice of praise and thanksgiving,*
 among those who keep holy-day. 
Why are you so full
of heaviness, O my soul?*
 and why are you so disquieted within me? 
Put your trust in God;*
 for I will yet give thanks to him,
 who is the help of my countenance,
 and my God. 
My soul is heavy within me;*
 therefore I will remember you
 from the land of Jordan,
 and from the peak of Mizar
 among the heights of Hermon. 
One deep calls to another
in the noise of your cataracts;*
 all your rapids and floods
 have gone over me. 
The Lord grants his loving-kindness
in the daytime;*
 in the night season his song is with me,
 a prayer to the God of my life. 
I will say to the God of my strength,
'Why have you forgotten me?*
 and why do I go so heavily
 while the enemy oppresses me?' 
While my bones are being broken,*
 my enemies mock me to my face; 
All day long they mock me*
 say to me, 'Where now is your God?' 
Why are you so full
of heaviness, O my soul?*
 and why are you so disquieted within me? 
Put your trust in God;*
 for I will yet give thanks to him,
 who is the help of my countenance,
 and my God. 

Psalm 43

Give judgement for me, O God,
and defend my cause
against an ungodly people;*
 deliver me from the deceitful
 and the wicked. 
For you are the God of my strength;
why have you put me from you?*
 and why do I go so heavily
 while the enemy oppresses me? 
Send out your light and your truth,
that they may lead me,*
 and bring me to your holy hill
 and to your dwelling; 
That I may go to the altar of God,
to the God of my joy and gladness;*
 and on the harp I will give thanks to you,
 O God my God. 
Why are you so full
of heaviness, O my soul?*
 and why are you so disquieted within me? 
Put your trust in God;*
 for I will yet give thanks to him,
 who is the help of my countenance,
 and my God. 
FIRST READING [Genesis 17:15-27]:

God said to Abraham, 'As for Sarai your wife, you shall not call her Sarai, but Sarah shall be her name. I will bless her, and moreover I will give you a son by her. I will bless her, and she shall give rise to nations; kings of peoples shall come from her.' Then Abraham fell on his face and laughed, and said to himself, 'Can a child be born to a man who is a hundred years old? Can Sarah, who is ninety years old, bear a child?' And Abraham said to God, 'O that Ishmael might live in your sight!' God said, 'No, but your wife Sarah shall bear you a son, and you shall name him Isaac. I will establish my covenant with him as an everlasting covenant for his offspring after him. As for Ishmael, I have heard you; I will bless him and make him fruitful and exceedingly numerous; he shall be the father of twelve princes, and I will make him a great nation. But my covenant I will establish with Isaac, whom Sarah shall bear to you at this season next year.' And when he had finished talking with him, God went up from Abraham. 

Then Abraham took his son Ishmael and all the slaves born in his house or bought with his money, every male among the men of Abraham's house, and he circumcised the flesh of their foreskins that very day, as God had said to him. Abraham was ninety-nine years old when he was circumcised in the flesh of his foreskin. And his son Ishmael was thirteen years old when he was circumcised in the flesh of his foreskin. That very day Abraham and his son Ishmael were circumcised; and all the men of his house, slaves born in the house and those bought with money from a foreigner, were circumcised with him. 

Words: William Cowper (1731-1800)
Tune: Llandaf (Meter: LM)

God of my life, to you I call; 
afflicted, at your feet I fall; 
when the great water-floods prevail, 
leave not my trembling heart to fail. 

Friend of the friendless and the faint, 
where should I lodge my deep complaint? 
Where, but with you, whose open door
invites the helpless and the poor? 

Did sufferers ever with you plead
and you refuse them in their need? 
Does not your promised word remain, 
that none shall seek your face in vain? 

Grief such as that I could not bear, 
unless you heard and answered prayer; 
but a prayer-hearing, answering God
supports me under every load. 

Bright is my future in your love; 
I have an advocate above: 
those whom the world admires the most
have no such privilege to boast. 

Poor and forgotten I am, yet
the living God does not forget: 
all those are safe, and must succeed
for whom Christ promises to plead.

SECOND READING [Luke 2:41-52]:

Now every year his parents went to Jerusalem for the festival of the Passover. And when he was twelve years old, they went up as usual for the festival. When the festival was ended and they started to return, the boy Jesus stayed behind in Jerusalem, but his parents did not know it. Assuming that he was in the group of travellers, they went a day's journey. Then they started to look for him among their relatives and friends. When they did not find him, they returned to Jerusalem to search for him. After three days they found him in the temple, sitting among the teachers, listening to them and asking them questions. And all who heard him were amazed at his understanding and his answers. When his parents saw him they were astonished; and his mother said to him, 'Child, why have you treated us like this? Look, your father and I have been searching for you in great anxiety.' He said to them, 'Why were you searching for me? Did you not know that I must be in my Father's house?' But they did not understand what he said to them. Then he went down with them and came to Nazareth, and was obedient to them. His mother treasured all these things in her heart. 

And Jesus increased in wisdom and in years, and in divine and human favour. 

The Benedictus (Morning), 
the Magnificat (Evening), or Nunc dimittis (Night) may follow.

Merciful God,
you give us every good gift.
Hear our prayers which we now offer
through your Son, Jesus Christ our Lord.

We pray for your Church.
May our divisions be healed,
that we may go into the world
proclaiming your Good News.
Lord, in your mercy:
hear our prayer.

We pray for the physical
and spiritual well-being
of our family and friends,
that they may rejoice in your mercy and love
and share in your joy
in your heavenly Kingdom.
Lord, in your mercy:
hear our prayer.

We pray for those who work,
especially those who are stressed
or overwhelmed,
that they may know
you are their refuge and strength.
Lord, in your mercy:
hear our prayer.

We pray for those who are persecuted
for fighting for justice and liberty,
that they may remember
that you are the source
of all things just and free.
Lord, in your mercy:
hear our prayer.

Give us knowledge of your will,
strength of spirit to follow Christ's teaching,
and courage to face the complexities of life.
Grant that all times
we may stand firm for the faith
and truly serve your Son,
Jesus Christ our Lord,
who lives and reigns
with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, now and for ever. Amen.
Gathering our prayers and praises into one,
let us pray as our Savior has taught us.

- The Lord's Prayer

Unite us in Christ
and give us your peace. 
Through your Holy Spirit, 
burning as a flame, gentle as a dove, 
may we live lives of justice, love, and prayer, 
and be a voice for those who are not heard.Amen.
The psalms are from _Celebrating Common Prayer_ (Mowbray), (c) The Society of Saint Francis 1992, which is used with permission. The biblical passage is from The New Revised Standard Version (Anglicized Edition), copyright (c) 1989, 1995 by the Division of Christian Education of  the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the USA. Used by permission. All rights reserved. The opening sentence is Matthew 8:17. The opening prayer of thanksgiving is from _Enriching Our Worship_ (c) 1996 The Church Pension Fund, and the closing sentence is from a prayer by Bosco Peters. The collect is from _Book of Common Order of the Church of Scotland_, (c) 1994, Panel on Worship of the Church of Scotland.

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