If we were to be at a regular church service today, this is what you would participate in as we gather to worship God and build one another up in the faith. May it be a guide for your own worship of God today, may it be of edification to your soul, and may it be a source by which to build up other believers today too.
PRE-SERVICE PRAYER MEETING
- Praise the Lord that we are able to worship Him no matter how our lives have changed.
- Plead with the Lord that we will again be able to meet together
- Praise the Lord for His greatness and goodness
- Ask the Lord to forgive your sins and prepare your heart for worship
- Ask that the Holy Spirit will teach you through His Word
- Rejoice in the Lord for the privilege of song
- Thank the Lord for hearing our prayers
The opening song is a call to worship to take our minds off this world and onto the things that are above (Col 3:2). Select one of the songs in the LHBC YouTube playlist to set you mind on things above.
The opening prayer by one of the elders is a brief prayer praising God that we can gather for worship. Pray this as an act of worship from your own heart.
“Our Father in Heaven, you do as you please in all the affairs of men, and have kept us at home today, but still, we praise you for your perfections and trust your wisdom in all things. Accept my worship for Jesus’ sake, Amen.“
- For the foreseeable future, our church will not meet as we used to, but the ministry will continue through our daily devotionals, our pastor’s daily WhatsApp messages, and our service-away-from-church every Sunday.
- Every Saturday is dedicated to Questions and Answers. Feel free to send the pastor your questions for it to be included in the next Saturday’s post.
- Our pastor is still working full-time in ministry, and is available for counselling as normal, albeit through WhatsApp, phone-call, ZOOM, or Skype. Send him a message and he’ll call you back.
- Our fellowship is severely limited by not being able to see each other and be of practical help to one another, but many of the fellowship commands in the NT (the “one another” commands), are still fully possible. Be sure still to bear the burden of one another in building one another up in the faith.
- If there is any need, please let the pastor know so we can help inasmuch as we are able to.
Pray with us:
“Our Father in Heaven, what a comfort it is to our souls to meditate on our memory verse of this past week and know that you are the great orchestrator of your perfect will (Ps 115:3). All the things going on at the moment in our world, Lord, accomplish your purposes. You turned even the great evils in this world into good for the physical (Gen 50:2) and spiritual (Rom 8:28-30) benefit of your people. If you, then, are for us, who can ever displace your will for us (Rom 8:31)? We know the answer to that Lord, and we know that since you gave us your Son, that indeed you will also give us all things, not the least of which is the love of Christ (Rom 8:33-39).
Lord, our heart aches for many who are struggling during these times, and especially, Lord, those who are estranged from you. We think of friends and family who have access to your word, and have other Christian friends, and are familiar with the truth about you in some way, and yet live with no worship of you in their hearts (Rom 9:1-5). Please, Lord, would you use these times to make something spiritually beautiful in their souls (Eccl 3:11). May they come to realise your goodness, your holiness, your righteousness, your worthiness of all worship (Ps 138:2) . May they come to realise their own sin, their own limited insights and abilities (Job 9:3-4), their own need of you—not only their daily need of you, but their eternal need of you. Please grant them the new birth (John 3:7-8), so that by faith they will repent (Acts 3:19) and receive eternal life (John 10:28).”
Lord help us know the great privilege of knowing you. Forgive us where we worry about the troubles of this world as though we do not know you (Mat 6:31-32). Set us on the path of righteousness and daily godliness instead (Matt 6:33).
Use the ministry that we have individually to one another and to our neighbour, and use the ministry that we have together as your church to make the knowledge of you and your word known to everyone. Thank you for the modern tools of our church website, our daily devotionals, our daily exhortations on social media, and our ability to share these things with others. Will you use us as a church to grow us as a church! May we recognise the gifts you have given us (Eph 4:7); may we learn the skills of ministry that we are equipped with (Eph 4:12); may we speak the truth in love (Eph 4:15) until we are united in truth (Eph 4:13) and growing in love (Eph 4:16).
Please provide for us in all our daily needs, protect us from the evils in this world, be with our missionaries, and keep us steadfast until that day that you come again.
SCRIPTURE READING AND PRAYER
Open your Bibles and read Ecclesiastes 12 out loud so you can simultaneously read, speak, and hear the Word of God.
Then pray with us:
“Lord, this whole book of Ecclesiastes is like light in a dark world, like truth in a world of lies, like wisdom in a world of folly, and like comfort in a world of distress. Keep us always remembering that you are the Creator God and we are mere created beings. While we are able, teach us about yourself and your perspective of this world. Give us enjoyment in this life, but may we use our youth, strength, and health to know you. Thank you for revealed your word to us in written form so we can dwell on it frequently. Thank you for being our spiritual Shepherds. Thank you for giving us commandments by which to live this earthly life well. Thank you that you will vindicate the righteous and judge the evildoers. May we not get distracted by the many opinions of the world, but fix ourselves on the delightful words of truth which you have handed down to us. Amen”
Pray with us as we transition to the preaching of God’s Word:
“What joy floods our hearts as we sing about you. We long for the day when this world’s trials and temptations will no longer be like a thorn in our flesh. But as long as we remain here on earth, please teach us through your Word, to which we submit now with the joy of the Lord on our hearts. To Jesus be all the glory, Amen
The sermon audio and preacher’s notes can be found here:
1 Thessalonians 4:1-8 “God’s Ethics for God’s People” by Andrew Zekveld
Select a closing song in the LHBC YouTube playlist as a personal response to what the Lord has shown you today.
May the LORD answer you in the day of trouble!Psalm 20:1
May the name of the God of Jacob protect you!