Prayers for the 19th Sunday after Pentecost (October 20-26, 2019)

The Watchword for the week from the Moravian Daily Texts:

Proclaim the message; be persistent whether the time is favorable or unfavorable; convince, rebuke, and encourage, with the utmost patience in teaching. 2 Timothy 4:2

Gracious God, in the midst of a busy day
We pause to build our lives around you.
In the midst of a busy life
We pause to build our lives around you.
In the midst of the pain that we carry in our hearts,
We pause to build our lives around you.
In the midst of our joyful celebration of the gift of life,
We pause to build our lives around you.

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit,
As it was in the beginning, is now and ever shall be, world without end. Amen. 

Psalm for the Week: Psalm 121

I lift up my eyes to the hills—
from where will my help come?
My help comes from God,
who made heaven and earth. 
God will not let your foot be moved;
God who keeps you will not slumber.
God who keeps Israel
will neither slumber nor sleep.
God is your keeper;
   God is your shade at your side.
The sun shall not strike you by day,
nor the moon by night.
God will keep you from all evil;
God will keep your life.
God will keep your going out and your coming in
from this time on and forevermore.

Let us confess our sins to our loving God:

(Adapted from the Liturgy of Christian Unity in the Moravian Book of Worship, page 125. Used by permission of the Interprovincial Board of Communication)

Gracious Lord and God we know that we will remain less that the whole persons you have called us to be in Christ Jesus until we acknowledge our sins to you, so we bow before you and pray: We confess that we have tried to run away and hide from you. We constantly deceive ourselves into thinking that we can live without you. We have made idols of our own achievements. We have treated other persons as though they did not bear your image. We have failed to enfold and include all persons within the outstretched and open arms of Jesus Christ, our Savior. And we have left undone those deeds of loving kindness and godly justice that you want us to pursue in your name. Bring your Spirit upon us in a gracious, healing way. Make us agents of reconciliation as we live within your holy presence. Amen. 

Hear the comforting words of our Lord: Your sins are forgiven. Go and sin no more. Thanks be to God. 

If you have a copy of the Moravian Daily Texts take time to read today’s texts now, but don’t rush over them as a task to be completed. These are the words that God would have you to cherish for this day. These are words that could transform your life if you allow them to.  So read slowly and deliberately.  Pause at words or phrases that happen to catch your spirit, for these are places where God might be speaking to you. When you have finished with your reading of scriptures, take time to pray for the needs that you present today, for the needs of those you love, and for the needs of a hurting world.  May your time of prayer help you to clarify where God would want you to focus your energy. When you are ready continue with this prayer as follows:

Lord, have mercy upon us.
Christ, have mercy upon us.
Lord, have mercy upon us.
Christ, hear us.

Creator of all humanity, we call you Holy, and seek to worship you all the days of our lives. We pray that the ways of your heavenly kingdom may be made real in the world that surrounds us. May the bread that we need for today be made available for us and all who are hungry; and may you forgive us, just as we are able to forgive those who have sinned against us. In the time of moral testing, may we listen first for your voice calling to us. This world, and all that is in it, always has been and always will be yours, help us to lose ourselves to you and your kingdom. Help us to find who we truly are as we walk in your light. Amen. 

God of all creation we thank you for the great things you have done for us.
Help us to make you the cornerstone upon which we build our lives.
We thank you for the way that you have gifted each of us in unique and wonderful ways, 
So that we may live gracefully as a reflection of what you have given us.
Savior of the world guide us to build our lives on you,
Fan the flames of our faith so that we may passionately share your love with those with whom we live, and work, and play.
May the love of God, the grace of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit,
Be with us throughout the living of this day we pray in Jesus’ name. Amen.

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Prayers for the 18th Sunday after Pentecost (October 13-19, 2019)

The Watchword for the week:

If we have died with him, we will also live with him. 2 Timothy 2:11

Praise be to you, creator God;
to you be glory and praise forever!
Just as your creative power moved over the face of the waters to bring light and life to your kingdom on earth,
Pour out your Spirit on us this day,
that we may live as children of light.
By your grace reveal your presence to us,
that we may be reflections of your love for the world. 

Psalm for the Week: Psalm 111

1 Praise the Lord!
I will give thanks to the Lord with my whole heart, in the company of the upright, in the congregation.
2Great are the works of the Lord,
studied by all who delight in them.
3 Full of honor and majesty is his work,
and his righteousness endures forever.
4He has gained renown by his wonderful deeds;
the Lord is gracious and merciful
.
5 He provides food for those who fear him;
he is ever mindful of his covenant.
6He has shown his people the power of his works,
in giving them the heritage of the nations.
7 The works of his hands are faithful and just;
all his precepts are trustworthy.
8They are established forever and ever,
to be performed with faithfulness and uprightness.
9 He sent redemption to his people; he has commanded his covenant forever.
Holy and awesome is his name.
10The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom;
all those who practice it have a good understanding. His praise endures forever.

Let us confess our sins to our Gracious God:

Gracious Lord and God we confess that we often fail to seek after your will and instead use our own whims to guide our lives.  In so doing we bend to the influence of prevailing culture which can lead us to self-centered decisions and separate us from you and our brothers and sisters in Christ. We are sorry for our sins and seek now to turn away from them. For the sake of your Son who died for us, forgives us, cleansess us, and changes us so that we might truly live. By your Holy Spirit, enable us to seek after the mind of Jesus Christ our Lord.

Hear the comforting words of our Lord: Your sins are forgiven. Go and sin no more.

We praise God by saying: Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit. As it was in the beginning, is now and ever shall be, world without end. AMEN. 

. If you have a copy of the Moravian Daily Texts take time to read today’s texts now, if you don’t have a copy of the Daily Texts, read a passage of scripture. Don’t rush over these words because they are ones that God would have you to cherish for this day. These are words that could transform your life if you allow them to so read slowly and deliberately.  Pause at words or phrases that happen to catch your spirit, for these are places where God might be speaking to you. When you have finished with your reading of scriptures, take time to pray for the needs that you present today, for the needs of those you love, and for the needs of a hurting world.  May your time of prayer help you to clarify where God would want you to focus your energy. When you are ready continue with this prayer as follows:

Lord, have mercy upon us.
Christ, have mercy upon us.
Lord, have mercy upon us.
Christ, hear us. 

Our Father in heaven,
hallowed be your name.
Your Kingdom come,
your will be done,
on earth as in heaven
Give us today our daily bread.
Forgive us our sins,
as we forgive those who sin against us.
Lead us not into temptation,
but deliver us from evil.
For the kingdom, the power and the glory are yours.
Now and forever. Amen

Living God, you invite us to take on the mind of Christ.
Everyone who follows you in the ways of your love is born of you and knows you well.
Loving Savior, you sacrificed your life in love for us,
You show us how to love by being vulnerable, unconditional, and persistent to the end.
Since you love us so much,
you empower us to love one another.
And if we love one another,
you abide in us, and we live in you.
Your love will bear fruit through us,
complete and perfect at the harvest.
Almighty God, unto whom all hearts are open, all desires known, and from whom no secrets are hid; 
cleanse the thoughts of our hearts by the inspiration of Your Holy Spirit, that we may perfectly love You, and worthily magnify Your holy name, through Christ the Lord. Amen.

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Prayers for the 17th Sunday in Pentecost (October 6-12, 2019)

The Watchword for the Week:
Commit your way to the Lord; trust in him, and he will act. Psalm 37:5

Stir up our hearts, O Lord,
to prepare the paths for your Only-begotten Son:
that we may worthily serve you
with hearts purified by His coming.

Psalm 37:1-9
Do not fret because of the wicked;
do not be envious of wrongdoers,
for they will soon fade like the grass,
and wither like the green herb.
Trust in the Lord, and do good;
   so you will live in the land, and enjoy security.
Take delight in God,
who will give you the desires of your heart.
Commit your way to the Lord;
trust in him, and he will act
God will make your vindication shine like the light,
and the justice of your cause like the day at noon.
Be still before God, and wait patiently;
do not fret over those who prosper in their way,
over those who carry out evil devices. 

Refrain from anger, and forsake wrath.
   Do not fret—it leads only to evil. 
For the wicked shall be cut off,
   but those who wait for God shall inherit the land.

Let us confess our sins, knowing that God is faithful and just, and will forgive us our sins.

Forgive us loving God for the winding path upon which you have to travel to find us. As we bend to the selfish influences of our culture we lose sight of your intended will for us. Too often we live by fear rather than by faith because we underestimate your power to heal the parts of us that are broken, and to correct the parts of us that have drifted from your influence. Bring us back to you so that we might respond to your Grace living it each day. Give us the courage to give you unhindered access to all of who we are. 

Comfort, comfort my people says your God. Speak tenderly to them and proclaim that they have suffered long enough, that their penalty is paid, and their sins are forgiven.

We praise God by saying: Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit. AMEN. 

If you have a copy of the Moravian Daily Texts take time to read today’s texts now, but don’t rush over them as a task to be completed. These are the words that God would have you to cherish for this day. These are words that could transform your life if you allow them to.  So read slowly and deliberately.  Pause at words or phrases that happen to catch your spirit, for these are places where God might be speaking to you. When you have finished with your reading of scriptures, take time to pray for the needs that you present today, for the needs of those you love, and for the needs of a hurting world.  May your time of prayer help you to clarify where God would want you to focus your energy. When you are ready continue with this prayer as follows:

Lord, have mercy upon us.
Christ, have mercy upon us.
Lord, have mercy upon us.
Christ, hear us. 

Our Father in heaven,
hallowed be your name.
Your Kingdom come,
your will be done,
on earth as in heaven.
Give us today our daily bread.
Forgive us our sins,
as we forgive those who sin against us.
Lead us not into temptation,
but deliver us from evil.
For the kingdom, the power and the glory are yours.
Now and forever. Amen

ISAIAH 40:30-31
Even those who are young grow weak;
the young can fall exhausted.
But those who wait on the Lord for help
will find their strength renewed.
They will rise on wings like eagles;
they will run and not get weary; they will walk and not grow weak.
Christ, the Light of the world, empower us to live as lights in this dark world of sin.
Christ, lead us into good stewardship of creation that we and our children may preserve and enjoy the world entrusted to us.
O Emmanuel, God with Us, Jesus Christ, desire of every nation, Savior of all peoples,
come and dwell within our hearts and lives.
We praise you, for you are good,
And your mercy endures forever. Amen.

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Prayers for the 16th Sunday after Pentecost (September 29-October 5, 2019)

The watchword for the week: There is great gain in godliness combined with contentment. 1 Timothy 6:6

Unto you, O God, we lift our praise.
Your ways are marvelous, and we seek to walk in your path.
This day gives us the chance to honor you,
To share with others your never ending love. 

Psalm 146
Praise be to God!
Praise God, O my soul!
I will praise God as long as I live;
    I will sing praises to my God all my life long.
Do not put your trust in nobles, in mortals,
    in whom there is no help.
When their breath departs, they return to the earth;
on that very day their plans shall perish. 
Happy are those whose help is the God of Jacob,
whose hope is in the Sovereign their God,
who made heaven and earth, the sea,
    and all that is in them; who keeps faith for ever;
who executes justice for the oppressed;
    who gives food to the hungry.
God sets the prisoners free;
God opens the eyes of those who cannot see.
God lifts up those who are bowed down;
God loves those who are righteous. 
God watches over the strangers;
and upholds the orphan and the widow,
but the way of the wicked God brings to ruin.

The Sovereign will reign forever,
    your God, O Zion, for all generations. Praise be to God!

With humility before the Lord, we confess our sin:

Gracious God, we know you to be the creator of the heavens and the earth, and we marvel at the wonder of your handiwork. We are grateful that you have loved us to the extent that you would give us your Son, Jesus Christ to give us new life. And we are thankful for the comforting presence of your Holy Spirit. We now confess our short comings as we have often failed to share Jesus’ promise of grace, we have failed to see the needs of those less fortunate than us, and we confess that much of our work has been focused on self-gratification rather than building up your kingdom for Jesus’ sake. Forgive us majestic Lord, and grant to us your peace. 

Thanks be to God that God’s love for each of us is not based on our faithfulness but rather on God’s steadfast love. My friends, know that your sins are forgiven, go therefore and walk in the light of the Lord, and give praise:

With joyful hearts we give praise to God by saying: Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit. As it was in the beginning, is now and ever shall be, world without end. Amen. 

Take some time now to read to read a scripture passage.  If you have a copy of the Moravian Daily Texts take time to read today’s texts now, but don’t rush over them as a task to be completed. These are the words that God would have you to cherish for this day. These are words that could transform your life if you allow them to.  So read slowly and deliberately.  Pause at words or phrases that happen to catch your spirit, for these are places where God might be speaking to you. When you have finished with your reading of scriptures, take time to pray for the needs that you present today, for the needs of those you love, and for the needs of a hurting world.  May your time of prayer help you to clarify where God would want you to focus your energy. When you are ready continue with this prayer as follows:

O Lord, hear us now as we brothers and sisters in Christ pray together.

Creator of all humanity, we call you Holy, and seek to worship you all the days of our lives. We pray that the ways of your heavenly kingdom may be made real in the world that surrounds us. May the bread that we need for today be made available for us and all who are hungry; and may you forgive us, just as we are able to forgive those who have sinned against us. In the time of moral testing, may we listen first for your voice calling to us. This world, and all that is in it, always has been and always will be yours, help us to lose ourselves to you and your kingdom. Help us to find who we truly are as we walk in your light. Amen. 

And now, most merciful God, we ask you to continue extending your grace and favor towards us;
Let the sun of your gospel never go down out of our hearts;
Let your truth abide and be established among us forever.
Help our unbelief, increase our faith, give us courage to boldly reach out to the needs of others.
In faith clothe us with Christ, that he may live in us, and that your name may be glorified in the sight of all the world.
Keep us mindful of your steadfast love and ways in which we can make that love come alive in the hearts of those that we serve and come in contact with this very day.
May Christ, and him crucified,
Remain our confession of faith. Amen.

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Prayers for the 15th Sunday after Pentecost (September 22-28, 2019)

The watchword for the week:
From the rising of the sun to its setting the
name of the Lord is to be praised. Psalm 113:3

From the busyness that our jobs bring us,
We pause to give praise to God.
From the busyness that fills our daily lives,
We pause to give praise to God.
From the distractions that re-order our life’s priorities,
We pause to give praise to God. 

Psalm 113
Praise be to God!
Praise, O servants of God;
praise the name of God.

Blessed be the name of the God
from this time on and forevermore.
From the rising of the sun to its setting
the name of the God is to be praised.

God is high above all nations,
   and God’s glory above the heavens.
Who is like God our God, who is seated on high,
who looks far down on the heavens and the earth?
God raises the poor from the dust,
and lifts the needy from the ash heap,
to make them sit with nobles,
with the leaders of God’s people.

God gives the childless woman a home,
making her the joyous mother of children.
Praise be to God!

Let us humbly confess our sins.
Gracious God, we know that you deserve our praise each and every hour of the day. But we confess that at times instead of counting our blessings, we grumble about places in our lives where we feel cheated. So we humbly ask that you create in us a clean heart, O God, and place within us that understanding that will help us to see your way and to observe it with our whole heart. Lord have mercy on us. 

The Lord says to us: I will forgive your iniquity and remember your sin no more. Peace be with you.
With grateful hearts we say: Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit. As it was in the beginning is now and ever shall be, world without end. Amen. 

Take time to read a passage of scripture.  If you have a copy of the Moravian Daily Texts take time to read today’s texts now, but don’t rush over them as a task to be completed. These are the words that God would have you to cherish for this day. These are words that could transform your life if you allow them to.  So read slowly and deliberately.  Pause at words or phrases that happen to catch your spirit, for these are places where God might be speaking to you. When you have finished with your reading of scriptures, take time to pray for the needs that you present today, for the needs of those you love, and for the needs of a hurting world.  May your time of prayer help you to clarify where God would want you to focus your energy. When you are ready continue with this prayer as follows:

Let us pray together:
Creator of us all, we praise your name because you have lovingly made each one of us. May your intended purpose be made real here on earth, even as it is already done in heaven. Feed us today with those things that we truly need, and may we share our abundance with others. Forgive us our sins, as we forgive those who have done wrong to us. In times of temptation, may we know of your life giving strength, and keep us from all evil. Gracious God, this is your kingdom, and we acknowledge your power and glory, both now and forever more. AMEN. 

From our waking in the morning to our resting in the evening, may we all give praise to God.
God has created a pattern of life which is intended to bring us to wholeness.
That wholeness was shown to us as Jesus brought the reality of God into human form.
We praise God for this most generous gift.
We pray that God might awaken in us the desire to follow his path more closely amidst the temptations and difficulties of our lives.
Come, Holy Spirit, show us the way, the truth, and the life.
Whatever we do, therefore, whether in word or deed, let us do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.
Thanks be to God. Amen.

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Prayers for the 14th Sunday after Pentecost (September 15-21, 2019)

Watchword for the Week:
The sacrifice acceptable to God is a broken spirit; a broken and contrite heart, O God, you will not despise. Psalm 51:17

Loving God, from the busyness of this day,
Call us into your presence.
From the distractions of our lives,
Call us into your presence.
From the slumber into which our faith can fall,
Call us into your presence.
From the pain present in our lives as well as in the world around us,
Call us into your presence.

Psalm 51:1-10

1 Have mercy on me, O God, according to your steadfast love;
according to your abundant mercy blot out my transgressions.
2 Wash me thoroughly from my iniquity,
and cleanse me from my sin.
3 For I know my transgressions,
and my sin is ever before me.
4 Against you, you alone, have I sinned, and done what is evil in your sight,
so that you are justified in your sentence and blameless when you pass judgment.
5 Indeed, I was born guilty,
a sinner when my mother conceived me.
6 You desire truth in the inward being;
therefore teach me wisdom in my secret heart.
7 Purge me with hyssop, and I shall be clean;
wash me, and I shall be whiter than snow.
8 Let me hear joy and gladness;
let the bones that you have crushed rejoice.
9 Hide your face from my sins,
and blot out all my iniquities.
10 Create in me a clean heart, O God,
and put a new and right spirit within me.

Confession of Sin

Loving God, as we acknowledge that our salvation is a gift from you, we now confess that our response to that gift has often fallen short of what it needs to be. Hear now our prayer of confession.
Your ways are marvelous, O God. Your law is perfect, and your grace is boundless. We humbly ask for your forgiveness for the times when we have ignored your good intentions for us and instead followed a short-sighted, and misguided course of action. We ask that you create in us a clean heart, O God. Renew within us a true and right spirit with which we can stand before you without guilt or shame. Do not cast us away as we might deserve, but restore unto us the comforting presence of your Holy Spirit. Give us joyful hearts with which to serve our brothers and sisters, and your Church.
Christ came into the world not to condemn the world, but that the world might be save through Him. We are forgiven and we have the promise of eternal life. Rejoice and give God praise.
Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit. As it was in the beginning is now and ever shall be, world without end, Amen.

Take a moment now to read a scripture passage.  If you have a copy of the Moravian Daily Texts take time to read today’s texts now, but don’t rush over them as a task to be completed. These are the words that God would have you to cherish for this day. These are words that could transform your life if you allow them to.  So read slowly and deliberately.  Pause at words or phrases that happen to catch your spirit, for these are places where God might be speaking to you. When you have finished with your reading of scriptures, take time to pray for the needs that you present today, for the needs of those you love, and for the needs of a hurting world.  May your time of prayer help you to clarify where God would want you to focus your energy. When you are ready continue with this prayer as follows:

With one voice, we pray together:

Creator of all humanity, we call you Holy, and seek to worship you all the days of our lives. We pray that the ways of your heavenly kingdom may be made real in the world that surrounds us. May the bread that we need for today be made available for us and all who are hungry; and may you forgive us, just as we are able to forgive those who have sinned against us. In the time of moral testing, may we listen first for your voice calling to us, instead of the call of the world; take from us the self-centeredness of our society. This world, and all that is in it, always has been and always will be yours, Amen. 

Lord awaken us,
To see your presence with us in each moment.
Lord open our hearts,
To see the suffering of others.
Lord open our eyes,
To see the ways in which we can serve you this day.
Lord help us,
To see the value that we have in your great kingdom on earth.
Lord open our souls,
To accept the grace that you have already extended to us.
Lord make us aware,
Of how we can share your grace with those around us.
Lord awaken us,
To live our lives in anticipation of your return or our being called home to you.
Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, to which indeed you were called in one body; and be thankful. Let the word of Christ richly dwell within you, with all wisdom teaching and admonishing one another with psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with thankfulness in your hearts to God.
And whatever we do in word or deed, may we do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks through Him to God the Father. AMEN.

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Prayers for the 13th Sunday after Pentecost (September 8-14, 2019)

The watchword for the week:

Choose life so that you and your descendants may live, loving the Lord your God, obeying him, and holding fast to him. Deuteronomy 30:19,20

In the midst of this busy day we pause to place God at the center of all that we are.
We lay aside the menial tasks as well as the important decisions for just a moment as we focus our attention on God’s grace.
Holy God, hear us now,
Listen to us as we lift up the prayers and petitions of our hearts, and may you open our ears so that we might hear your voice speaking to us. 

Psalm 1

Happy are those who do not follow the advice of the wicked,
or take the path that sinners tread, or sit in the seat of scoffers;

but their delight is in the law of God,
    and on God’s law they meditate day and night.

They are like trees planted in streams of water,
which yield their fruit in its season,

and their leaves do not wither.
In all that they do, they prosper.

The wicked are not so,
but are like chaff that the wind drives away.

Therefore the wicked will not stand in the judgment,
nor sinners in the congregation of the righteous;

for God watches over the way of the righteous,
but the way of the wicked will perish.

Let us humbly confess our sins.

Gracious Savior, we bow our heads before you and confess that too often we have forgotten that we are yours and that true life comes from you. We confess that too often our first thought is financial security rather than sacrifice for your kingdom. We confess that we often hold being right as a higher virtue than being compassionate. We confess that too often we accept the notion that the immediate gratification of our needs and wants is more satisfying than seeing your will be known and done. For these things we ask your forgiveness and we also ask for your strength. Give us clear minds and open hearts so we may choose life by what is good and acceptable and perfect. Enfold us in your arms so that we might feel your love for us and for the world. 

My friends, the Biblical message is clear: Christ has died, Christ is risen, and Christ will come again that we might live in newness of life; new life both here and in the world yet to come. Let us give thanks to God.

Today we praise the God who created us, the God who is redeeming us, and the God who is sustaining us. Glory be to the triune God. Amen. 

Take time now for the reading of a scripture passage.  If you have a copy of the Moravian Daily Texts take time to read today’s texts now, but don’t rush over them as a task to be completed. These are the words that God would have you to cherish for this day. These are words that could transform your life if you allow them to.  So read slowly and deliberately.  Pause at words or phrases that happen to catch your spirit, for these are places where God might be speaking to you. When you have finished with your reading of scriptures, take time to pray for the needs that you present today, for the needs of those you love, and for the needs of a hurting world.  May your time of prayer help you to clarify where God would want you to focus your energy. When you are ready continue with this prayer as follows:

O Lord, hear us now as we, sisters and brothers in Christ, pray together.
Our Father in heaven, praise be your name; your kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven. Give us today our daily bread. 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 kingdom, the power, and the glory are yours now and forever. Amen. 

The Apostle Paul writes:
1 I appeal to you therefore, brothers and sisters, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and acceptable to God, which is your spiritual worship.
2 Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your minds, so that you may discern what is the will of God—what is good and acceptable and perfect.
3 For by the grace given to me I say to everyone among you not to think of yourself more highly than you ought to think, but to think with sober judgment, each according to the measure of faith that God has assigned.
4 For as in one body we have many members, and not all the members have the same function, 5 so we, who are many, are one body in Christ, and individually we are members one of another. Romans 12:1-5

As one body then let us together go in peace to love and serve the Lord.
Thanks be to God. Amen.

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