Gifts for Canadian Thanksgiving from Patricia (Patti) Rodgers, who gives us not only a Call to Worship, a Prayer and a new hymn, but also her own photography.
One: Long ago God, the Creator of all things, chose a people, led them from slavery, suffered their disobedience and sent them into exile. Then God brought them home.
All: God said to them: I will restore the fortunes of my people Israel, and they shall rebuild the ruined cities and inhabit them; they shall plant vineyards and drink their wine, and they shall make gardens and eat their fruit. (Amos 9:14)
One: Long ago, God, the Creator of all things, said to God’s people, “Return to me” and “be a blessing to the world.”
All: So we return from wandering, safe in the promise God made to God’s people: We are never far from God.
One: Not so long ago we heard God say: Listen for “I am doing a new thing. – can you not see it?” (Isaiah 43:19)
All: We see and hear and taste what God is doing and it is good! We celebrate together the blessings of this community and wait upon God’s word for us. Come, let us worship!
Still, still, the wind whispers still in the crimson leaves.
Still, still, the lake shimmers in the sun
Still, still, rocks along the shore are warm and dry
But evening is cool and frost hints in the pre-dawn light
Winter is coming.
God will no longer sparkle in blue water, but be found in crystals of ice
God will no longer draw sweat to my brow, but I will be warmed by the fire
God will no longer be solid and still, but blow in the night round the cabin’s eves.
God is never exactly the same, yet never exactly different.
New words to an old hymn: Tune is Abbot’s Leigh 8787D
God who loves with no agenda
God whose grace is freely given
God through Jesus expertly teaching
How our lives with joy can be lived
Help us grow in faith and kindness
Rising up to our greatest strength
Let no challenge ever defeat us
Only your Will to do and say
God who binds our hearts together
God the cornerstone of this place
God our guide and comforting parent
God our judge and magistrate
Hold us in your boundless wisdom
Carry burdens we cannot share
Set us free to faithfully serve you
With a love that flows everywhere
God who calls all people to justice
God who forms community
God whose Spirit frees us from bondage
To a life of liberty
May we heed your call to freedom
May we understand poverty
All your people working together
For the love of humanity.