The Day of Pentecost – May 31

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Readings, Devotion, Prayers and Announcements for the Day of Pentecost, May 31, 2020, for both MLLC and Waldeck Evangelical Lutheran Church

As we are not able to meet due as usual to health and safety concerns, yet we are still finding ways to share and celebrate our faith together.  We will resume in-person services on the weekend of June 6-7, following the normal schedule for both MLLC and Waldeck.  The Facebook Live services will be offered on Sundays at 8:00 a.m. from Waldeck, and at 10:00 a.m. from MLLC.

Below are the readings, prayers, and various announcements for this Sunday and this week.  The Sunday devotion is at the end of the readings.

 

Remember Your Regular Offerings

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For both of our congregations, Waldeck and MLLC, please remember that our expenses continue even when we are unable to meet as usual.  Please make a point to give your offerings as you would on a typical week.  Here are some ideas of what to do:

For Waldeck Evangelical Lutheran Church in Ledbetter:

– send your offering by mail to the church office  – Waldeck Evangelical Lutheran Church; 6915 Waldeck Church Lane; Ledbetter, TX 78946

– set aside your offerings each week, and then bring these to church when you can be at worship again.

For MLLC in Carmine:

– send your offering by mail to the church office  – MLLC, P O BOX 362, Carmine, TX 78932-0362

– set aside your offerings each week, and then bring these to church when you can be at worship again.

– give offerings through the church web site:  mllccarmine.com/online-giving  This page has a link to our secure giving page.  Offerings can be made by bank draft, debit card, or credit card through this special web site.

YouTube Video Link

Here is the link for the YouTube video of this day’s service.

May 31, 2020

Day of Pentecost

 

First Reading: Acts 2:1-21

A reading from Acts.

Pentecost was a Jewish harvest festival that marked the fiftieth day after Passover. Luke portrays the Holy Spirit being poured out upon the disciples before the gathered and astonished people assembled in Jerusalem for the festival. Filled with the Spirit, the disciples were able to witness to the power of Christ’s resurrection.

1When the day of Pentecost had come, [the apostles] were all together in one place. 2And suddenly from heaven there came a sound like the rush of a violent wind, and it filled the entire house where they were sitting. 3Divided tongues, as of fire, appeared among them, and a tongue rested on each of them. 4All of them were filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in other languages, as the Spirit gave them ability.
5Now there were devout Jews from every nation under heaven living in Jerusalem. 6And at this sound the crowd gathered and was bewildered, because each one heard them speaking in the native language of each. 7Amazed and astonished, they asked, “Are not all these who are speaking Galileans? 8And how is it that we hear, each of us, in our own native language? 9Parthians, Medes, Elamites, and residents of Mesopotamia, Judea and Cappadocia, Pontus and Asia, 10Phrygia and Pamphylia, Egypt and the parts of Libya belonging to Cyrene, and visitors from Rome, both Jews and proselytes, 11Cretans and Arabs—in our own languages we hear them speaking about God’s deeds of power.” 12All were amazed and perplexed, saying to one another, “What does this mean?” 13But others sneered and said, “They are filled with new wine.”
14But Peter, standing with the eleven, raised his voice and addressed them, “Men of Judea and all who live in Jerusalem, let this be known to you, and listen to what I say. 15Indeed, these are not drunk, as you suppose, for it is only nine o’clock in the morning. 16No, this is what was spoken through the prophet Joel:
17‘In the last days it will be, God declares,
that I will pour out my Spirit upon all flesh,
and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy,
and your young men shall see visions,
and your old men shall dream dreams.
18Even upon my slaves, both men and women,
in those days I will pour out my Spirit;
and they shall prophesy.
19And I will show portents in the heaven above
and signs on the earth below,
blood, and fire, and smoky mist.
20The sun shall be turned to darkness
and the moon to blood,
before the coming of the Lord’s great and glorious day.
21Then everyone who calls on the name of the Lord shall be saved.’ ”

The word of the Lord.

Thanks be to God.

 

 

 

Psalm: Psalm 104:24-34, 35b

24How manifold are your works, O Lord!
In wisdom you have made them all; the earth is full of your creatures.
25Yonder is the sea, great and wide, with its swarms too many to number,
living things both small and great.
26There go the ships to and fro,
and Leviathan, which you made for the sport of it.
27All of them look to you
to give them their food in due season. 
28You give it to them; they gather it;
you open your hand, and they are filled with good things.
29When you hide your face, they are terrified;
when you take away their breath, they die and return to their dust.
30You send forth your Spirit, and they are created;
and so you renew the face of the earth.
31May the glory of the Lord endure forever;
O Lord, rejoice in all your works. 
32You look at the earth and it trembles;
you touch the mountains and they smoke.
33I will sing to the Lord as long as I live;
I will praise my God while I have my being.
34May these words of mine please God.
I will rejoice in the Lord.
35bBless the Lord, O my soul.
Hallelujah! 

 

Second Reading: 1 Corinthians 12:3b-13

A reading from 1 Corinthians.

Paul is helping the Corinthians understand the relationship between our God-given unity and Spirit-created diversity. The Spirit creates the unity of faith and gives all Christians diverse gifts for the common benefit of all. We need one another’s diverse spiritual gifts because the same Spirit has given them to each person for the common good.

3bNo one can say “Jesus is Lord” except by the Holy Spirit.
4Now there are varieties of gifts, but the same Spirit; 5and there are varieties of services, but the same Lord; 6and there are varieties of activities, but it is the same God who activates all of them in everyone. 7To each is given the manifestation of the Spirit for the common good. 8To one is given through the Spirit the utterance of wisdom, and to another the utterance of knowledge according to the same Spirit, 9to another faith by the same Spirit, to another gifts of healing by the one Spirit, 10to another the working of miracles, to another prophecy, to another the discernment of spirits, to another various kinds of tongues, to another the interpretation of tongues. 11All these are activated by one and the same Spirit, who allots to each one individually just as the Spirit chooses.

12For just as the body is one and has many members, and all the members of the body, though many, are one body, so it is with Christ. 13For in the one Spirit we were all baptized into one body—Jews or Greeks, slaves or free—and we were all made to drink of one Spirit.

The word of the Lord.

Thanks be to God.

Gospel: John 20:19-23

The holy gospel according to John.

Glory to you, O Lord.

The risen Jesus appears to his disciples, offering them a benediction, a commission, and the gift of the Holy Spirit.

19When it was evening on that day, the first day of the week, and the doors of the house where the disciples had met were locked for fear of the Jews, Jesus came and stood among them and said, “Peace be with you.” 20After he said this, he showed them his hands and his side. Then the disciples rejoiced when they saw the Lord. 21Jesus said to them again, “Peace be with you. As the Father has sent me, so I send you.” 22When he had said this, he breathed on them and said to them, “Receive the Holy Spirit. 23If you forgive the sins of any, they are forgiven them; if you retain the sins of any, they are retained.”

The gospel of the Lord.

Praise to you, O Christ.

 

Devotion

“Living Waters”

By Pastor David Tinker

Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.

Many years ago I attended a spiritual retreat near Lima, Ohio.  At the Christian retreat center there was a simple, yet beautiful chapel.  On the wall behind the altar was a mosaic with blue, aqua-blue, white and red tiles.  This beautiful mosaic depicted a sort of gushing geyser.  I believe the symbolism was that of the Spiritual life which God provides for us in super abundant ways.

In today’s gospel reading we hear Jesus talking about how God’s Spirit will be granted to his people.  He says, “Let anyone who is thirsty come to me, and let the one who believes in me drink. As the scripture has said, ‘Out of the believer’s heart shall flow rivers of living water.’”  John comments to help us understand this when he writes, “Now he said this about the Spirit, which believers in him were to receive…”

Jesus talks about living water.  For us today, we don’t necessarily get that concept.  For people living in or near a desert, such as in the Holy Land, water is precious; drinkable water in an absolute necessity.  “Living water” is a phrase used for flowing or fresh water, for example, “running water” in English. Flowing water is usually drinkable water, and that is something very important in desert climates. In contrast, there can be “dead” water. Water going nowhere which is stuck in a stagnant pool is usually undrinkable.  Drinkable water was much rarer than we experience here in our nation, and it was seen as an essential source of life.

So, with the gift of the Holy Spirit, the followers of Jesus, both in his day and in our day, are given new and abundant life.  In John’s gospel, chapter 4, verses 13 and 14 we read:  “Jesus said to the woman at the well, “Everyone who drinks of this water will be thirsty again, but those who drink of the water that I will give them will never be thirsty. The water that I will give will become in them a spring of water gushing up to eternal life.””

Jesus is talking about the gift of his Holy Spirit for us.  This Holy Spirit brings life to us in many ways.

The Spirit opens us up to knowing the true source of life – The Holy Spirit of God enables us to understand and believe God’s Word and Promises for us.  The Spirit opens us up to the greatest spiritual truth, that of Jesus’ suffering, death and resurrection for the forgiveness of our sin.  The Spirit helps us see that God loves us beyond measure, and that he has come into this world to free us from the power of sin, death and evil.  God, the Holy Spirit, grants us the faith we need to trust in what Jesus has done for us.

The Spirit stirs us to faith and action – God’s Spirit powers us for life and ministry which build up the church and the world we serve.  When God the Holy Spirit stirs among God’s people, great things happen.  God’s Word is spread; the hungry are fed; people are brought to faith in Christ; worship becomes more joyful; there is greater peace among church leaders; people become passionate about prayer; people look beyond themselves to help the hurting, hopeless and lost in their community.  I’ve personally witnessed this in my life as a pastor and as a Christian.  As we pray today, let us pray for a grand stirring of God, the Holy Spirit, in this congregation.

Pr. Brian Stoffregen, of Faith Lutheran Church in Yuma, Arizona, comments on this: “Neither living water nor wind are stale (or boring?). Shouldn’t the same be true of Spirit-filled believers and congregations? Both living water and wind (Spirit) are images of power. I think that that’s what Pentecost is all about. We, the followers of Jesus, have been empowered by God to carry on Jesus’ witness and ministry in the world.”

He continues when he writes: “I’ve often thought and said, while the early believers thought of the Spirit as something that powered their lives, we often think of it as a doctrine to be studied.”

My hope for us all is that we will receive the power of God’s Spirit and that we will understand the Spirit.  As a reminder on this Day of Pentecost, I share with you the basic teachings of Luther’s Small Catechism regarding the Holy Spirit.

The Third Article:  On Being Made Holy

I believe in the Holy Spirit, the holy catholic church, the communion of saints, the forgiveness of sins, the resurrection of the body, and the life everlasting.

What is this?

I believe that by my own understanding or strength I cannot believe in Jesus Christ my Lord or come to him, but instead the Holy Spirit has called me through the gospel, enlightened me with his gifts, made me holy and kept me in the true faith, just as he calls, gathers, enlightens, and makes holy the whole Christian church on earth and keeps it with Jesus Christ in the one common, true faith. Daily in this Christian church the Holy Spirit abundantly forgives all sins—mine and those of all believers. On the last day the Holy Spirit will raise me and all the dead and will give to me and all believers in Christ eternal life. This is most certainly true.

As we reflect on this today, I pray we will also be stirred to greater faith and action through the power of God, the Holy Spirit.

Let us pray – Almighty God, Father, Son and Holy Spirit, you enter our lives in many ways, and call us to follow you.  Help us to receive the living water of your Holy Spirit.  May we be refreshed and empowered by your gracious spirit in our lives.  We pray this in Jesus holy name.  Amen

 

 

*Prayers of Intercession

A:  Let us pray for the whole people of God in Christ Jesus, and for all people according to their needs.

A brief silence.

Grant, Almighty God, Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, that all who confess your Name may be united in your truth, live together in your love and reveal your glory in the world.  Lord, in your mercy
Hear our prayer.

Guide the people of this land, and of all the nations, in the ways of justice and peace; that we may honor one another and serve the common good. Lord, in your mercy
Hear our prayer.

Give us all a reverence for the earth as your own creation, that we may use its resources rightly in the service of others and to your honor and glory. Lord, in your mercy
Hear our prayer.

Bless all whose lives are closely linked with ours, and grant that we may serve Christ in them, and love one another as he loves us. Lord, in your mercy
Hear our prayer.

Other petitions may be added here.

Comfort and heal all those who suffer in body, mind, or spirit, especially those who we name aloud or in quiet prayer… ; give them courage and hope in their troubles, and bring them the joy of your salvation.  Lord, in your mercy
Hear our prayer.

We commend to your mercy all who have died (especially…), that your will for them may be fulfilled; and we pray that we may share with all your saints in your eternal kingdom. Lord, in your mercy
Hear our prayer.

P:  Into your hands, O Lord, we commend all for whom we pray, trusting in your mercy; through your Son, Jesus Christ our Lord.

Amen

 

LORD’S PRAYER 

 

Copyright © 2020 Augsburg Fortress. All rights reserved. Reprinted by permission under Augsburg Fortress Liturgies Annual License #27061.

New Revised Standard Version Bible, copyright © 1989, Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

 

 

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