Invitation — Hebrews 4:14, 16
"Since we have a great high priest who has ascended into heaven, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold firmly to the faith we profess... Let us then approach God's throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need."
Bible Song — Psalm 112:1-5, 7
Praise the Lord.
Blessed are those who fear the Lord,
who find great delight in his commands.
Their children will be mighty in the land;
the generation of the upright will be blessed.
Wealth and riches are in their houses,
and their righteousness endures forever.
Even in darkness light dawns for the upright,
for those who are gracious and compassionate and righteous.
Good will come to those who are generous and lend freely,
who conduct their affairs with justice...
They will have no fear of bad news;
their hearts are steadfast, trusting in the Lord.
Bible Reading — Hebrews 12:18-24
You have not come to a mountain that can be touched and that is burning with fire; to darkness, gloom and storm; to a trumpet blast or to such a voice speaking words that those who heard it begged that no further word be spoken to them, because they could not bear what was commanded: "If even an animal touches the mountain, it must be stoned to death." The sight was so terrifying that Moses said, "I am trembling with fear."
But you have come to Mount Zion, to the city of the living God, the heavenly Jerusalem. You have come to thousands upon thousands of angels in joyful assembly, to the church of the firstborn, whose names are written in heaven. You have come to God, the Judge of all, to the spirits of the righteous made perfect, to Jesus the mediator of a new covenant, and to the sprinkled blood that speaks a better word than the blood of Abel.
Remind yourself you are in God's presence and read again ... notice how God might be speaking to you through his Word — dwell on a word or phrase that jumps out at you ... let your heart respond to God in prayer ... take refreshment in God's presence.
- for deep gratitude for the cross of Jesus Christ
- for those living in poverty and suffering injustice
- for those persecuted for their faith
Prayer — CD 5.12
Ascended Savior, fix my eyes on you, glorious and seated at the right hand of God. Let this vision of your heavenly reign — active, engaged, and working for my good — move me here on earth to live with a childlike humility in your care and steady courage in the face of opposition, all the while finding joy and gratitude welling up within me, a life pleasing to you and a benefit to the watching world. That's a big order to deliver, but you are faithful to do it. Amen.
Blessing — Revelation 5:13
"To him who sits on the throne and to the Lamb be praise and honor and glory and power, for ever and ever!"