ORGAN VOLUNTARY Nearer, Still Nearer Arr. Payne
Come, all you who carry heavy burdens, and Christ will give you rest. For he is gentle and humble in heart: in him we find rest for our souls.
PRAYER OF THE DAY Matthew 11:28-30
Savior and Friend, you call us to lay down our burdens and find rest in a relationship with you. Help us to learn from you how to be gentle and humble of heart, that our burdens may be light. Amen.
HYMN 267 Come, Christians, Join to Sing MADRID
Come, Christians, join to sing: Alleluia! Amen! Loud praise to Christ our King: Alleluia! Amen! Let all, with heart and voice, before his throne rejoice; praise is his gracious choice: Alleluia! Amen!
Come, lift your hearts on high: Alleluia! Amen! Life shall not end the strain: Alleluia! Amen! He is our guide and friend; to us he’ll condescend; his love shall never end: Alleluia! Amen!
Praise yet our Christ again: Alleluia! Amen! Life shall not end the strain: Alleluia! Amen! On heaven’s blissful shore his goodness we’ll adore, singing forevermore: Alleluia! Amen!
CALL TO CONFESSION
God upholds all who are falling and raises up all who are bowed down. Therefore let us confess our sin with every confidence that we will be lifted up.
PRAYER OF CONFESSION
Holy One, we confess to you and to each other that we are tired and weighed down by the mistakes we have made, even in our closest relationships with our friends, our spouses, and our partners. We give this burden to you, mindful of Jesus’ promise that he will give us rest. We trust in you. Amen
ASSURANCE OF PARDON
Friends, hear the good news of our faith: God is gracious and merciful, slow to anger and abounding in steadfast love, showing compassion to all. Forgiven and freed, let us rise up with joy.
Friends, this is the good news of the gospel: In Jesus Christ we are forgiven. Thanks be to God.
HYMN 182 I Heard the Voice of Jesus Say KINGSFOLD
I heard the voice of Jesus say: “Come unto me and rest; lay down, O weary one, lay down your head upon my breast.” I came to Jesus as I was, so weary, worn, and sad; I found in him a resting place, and he has made me glad.
I heard the voice of Jesus say, “Behold, I freely give the living water, thirsty one; stoop down and drink and live.” I came to Jesus, and I drank of that life-giving stream; my thirst was quenched, my soul revived, and now I live in him.
I heard the voice of Jesus say, “I am this dark world’s light; look unto me, your morn shall rise, and all your day be bright.” I looked to Jesus, and I found in him my star, my sun; and in that light of life I’ll walk till traveling days are done.
HEARING GOD’S WORD
PRAYER FOR ILLUMINATION
Comforting God, by your Holy Spirit lift the burdens from our souls through the reading of your Word for us, that we may learn how easy it is to live in a loving relationship with you. Amen.
THE FIRST READING Psalm 145:8-14
8The Lord is gracious and merciful, slow to anger and abounding in steadfast love. 9The Lord is good to all, and his compassion is over all that he has made. 10All your works shall give thanks to you, O Lord, and all your faithful shall bless you. 11They shall speak of the glory of your kingdom, and tell of your power, 12to make known to all people your mighty deeds, and the glorious splendor of your kingdom. 13Your kingdom is an everlasting kingdom, and your dominion endures throughout all generations. The Lord is faithful in all his words, and gracious in all his deeds. 14The Lord upholds all who are falling, and raises up all who are bowed down.
THE GOSPEL READING Matthew 11:16-19, 25-30
16“But to what will I compare this generation? It is like children sitting in the marketplaces and calling to one another, 17‘We played the flute for you, and you did not dance; we wailed, and you did not mourn.’ 18For John came neither eating nor drinking, and they say, ‘He has a demon’; 19the Son of Man came eating and drinking, and they say, ‘Look, a glutton and a drunkard, a friend of tax collectors and sinners!’ Yet wisdom is vindicated by her deeds.”
25At that time Jesus said, “I thank you, Father, Lord of heaven and earth, because you have hidden these things from the wise and the intelligent and have revealed them to infants; 26yes, Father, for such was your gracious will. 27All things have been handed over to me by my Father; and no one knows the Son except the Father, and no one knows the Father except the Son and anyone to whom the Son chooses to reveal him. 28“Come to me, all you that are weary and are carrying heavy burdens, and I will give you rest. 29Take my yoke upon you, and learn from me; for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. 30For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.”
The word of the Lord. Thanks be to God.
HYMN 756 O God of Every Nation LLANGLOFFAN
O God of every nation, of every race and land. Redeem the whole creation with your almighty hand. Where hate and fear divide us and bitter threats are hurled, in love and mercy guide us and heal our strife-torn world.
From search for wealth and power and scorn of truth and right, from trust in bombs that shower destruction through the night, from pride of race and station and blindness to your way, deliver every nation, eternal God, we pray.
Lord, strengthen those who labor that all may find release from fear of rattling saber, from dread of war’s increase; when hope and courage falter, your still small voice be heard; with faith that none can alter, your servants undergird.
Keep bright in us the vision of days when war shall cease, when hatred and division give way to love and peace, till dawns the morning glorious when truth and justice reign and Christ shall rule victorious o’er all the world’s domain.
SERMON Wilson Nicholson
RESPONDING TO GOD’S WORD
AFFIRMATION OF FAITH The Apostles’ Creed
I believe in God, the Father almighty, Maker of heaven and earth, and in Jesus Christ his only Son, our Lord; who was conceived by the Holy Ghost, born of the Virgin Mary, suffered under Pontius Pilate, was crucified, dead, and buried; he descended into hell; the third day he rose again from the dead; he ascended into heaven, and sitteth on the right hand of God the Father Almighty; from thence he shall come to judge the quick and the dead. I believe in the Holy Ghost; the holy catholic church; the communion of saints; the forgiveness of sins; the resurrection of the body; and the life everlasting. Amen.
INVITATION TO DISCIPLESHIP AND OFFERING*
Sisters and brothers, God is faithful and gracious to us, upholds us, and raises us up. Let us show our thanksgiving by giving generously to support ministries that ease burdens and give rest to those in need.
SAXOPHONE/PIANO OFFERTORY Christians, We Have Met to Worship Arr. Curnow
PRAYERS OF THANKSGIVING, PETITION, AND INTERCESSION
Compassionate God, we ask that you bless and multiply these gifts, that they may be used to proclaim the glory of your kingdom and make known to all people the power of your saving acts.
Compassionate God, you are good to all. Help us to trust your Word and accept your invitation to find rest in you.
We pray for your church in all of its forms, that we may learn how to follow Jesus by giving rest to the weary in lives of service that are gentle and humble of heart. Compassionate God, you are good to all.
We pray for the earth and all you have created and love, that all things may come back into the ecological balance that you first intended and all your works shall give thanks to you. Compassionate God, you are good to all.
We pray for all people, their nations and leaders, that when the burdens of war, poverty, and hunger are too much to bear, we may do our part to offer rest and peace. Compassionate God, you are good to all.
We pray for all those who suffer violence in the streets and in their homes, that they might find safety and healing. We pray for those who are sick, those suffering mental illness, and those who struggle with moral dilemmas; uphold them and grant them peace. Compassionate God, you are good to all.
Gracious and merciful God, creator of heaven and earth, we join our voices with all that you have made in blessing you and giving thanks to you, who, with Jesus Christ and the Holy Spirit, show compassion and goodness to all. Amen.
THE LORD’S PRAYER
Our Father, who art in heaven, hallowed be thy name, thy kingdom come, thy will be done, on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread; and forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors; and lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil. For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, forever. Amen.
HYMN 331 God of the Ages, Whose Almighty Hand NATIONAL HYMN
God of the ages, whose almighty hand leads forth in beauty all the starry band of shining worlds in splendor through the skies, our grateful songs before thy throne arise.
Thy love divine hath led us in the past. In this free land by thee our lot is cast. Be thou our ruler, guardian, guide, and stay: thy word our law, thy paths our chosen way.
From war’s alarms, from deadly pestilence, be thy strong arm our ever sure defense. Thy true religion in our hearts increase. They bounteous goodness nourish us in peace.
Refresh thy people on their toilsome way. Lead us from night to never-ending day. Fill all our lives with love and grace divine, and glory, laud, and praise be ever thine.
GOING OUT INTO GOD’S WORLD
THE CHARGE AND BLESSING
ORGAN VOLUNTARY Toccata on Psalm 145 (Great Is the Lord) Pearson
The flowers today are dedicated to Tuiana Miller
in celebration of her birthday on Monday, July 6th.
*Note Regarding Offering: Should you wish to continue fulfilling your pledge during the online worshiping experience, you may mail your check to BTPC, 6000 Bentwood Trail, Dallas, TX 75252. You may also want to try the online giving by going to the BTPC website (www.bentwoodtrail.org) and clicking on the tab labeled “Online Giving” and follow the instructions for making an online donation.
Question for Reflection
How have you experienced God’s steadfast love (Ps. 145:8)?
Household Prayer: Morning
Loving God, I receive this new day as a gift from you. Help me to see signs today of your compassion, which is over all that you have made. Please keep me mindful to watch for ways today in which I can ease others’ burdens and give them rest, in Jesus’ name. Amen.
Household Prayer: Evening
Caring God, thank you for my journey through this day. Whatever conflict I may feel within about what I did and did not do I give to you to carry for me now, and I let you give me rest. Amen.