Welcome & Opening Prayer

Prelude                     The King of Love My Shepherd Is

Welcome & Opening Prayer                   

O Gracious God, this week has been full of challenges, however equally full of opportunities to strengthen our faith. For some, the week has been rather uneventful, with daily routines much of the same – the sun rises and the sun sets; while others have endured more serious life-changing moments – dark clouds hovered, day in and day out, and the sun wasn’t seen very often.  But then comes Sunday morning, and no matter what transpired in the past week, we seem to find You and settle in Your Peace.  So, be with us, Heavenly Father, and bless us in this hour of worship.  In Your Holy Name we will pray and live.  Amen and Amen.

Call to Contemplation  I Want to Walk as a Child of the Light

Call to Worship (abbreviated Scriptures and Baylor’s Led by Love)

P:   God is a God of Light and in God there is no darkness.

C:   The steadfast love of God endures forever and ever.

P:   We are God’s masterpieces; we believe; & are destined to eternal life.

C:   Let us all live in the harmony that blends our faith with our daily life.

P:   God gave His only Son, that whomever believes in Him will be saved!
C:   Lord, make me more holy, more faithful, more humble and righteous.

       Amen and Amen.

Hymn             My Faith Looks Up to Thee

Scripture Reading                        Ephesians 2: 1-10                         JoEllen Graham

A Musical Moment for Meditation         Turn Your Eyes Upon Jesus

The Message                                       John 3: 14-21                   

“…for God so loved YOU…!”

Pastor Matt Jackson

Hymn             Beneath the Cross of Jesus

Prayers of the People

Over the recent weeks, we introduced the book, 31 Days of Prayer, by Ruth and Warren Myers.  The Myers propose eight vital areas of our spiritual life that significantly impact our prayer life… the first area is “Cultivate our faith through pursuing God;” the second area is that of “Forgiveness;”  and today we are introduced to the third area – “Abide in Christ.” Abiding in Christ means to depend on Him, enjoying our spiritual union with Him and allowing Him to meet our needs.

As such, we continue to hold in prayer:   The Roberts family; Elaine; Rick and Jacqui; the Reardon family; The Evans and Trapp family, the Pulselli family, and several “special intentions.”   As you have heard each week, sometimes the best words to share are “Thank you” and so, on behalf of those who are named above, their family and friends, “Thank you for all your thoughts and prayers!”

Please join me now in a time of prayer…

Almighty God, we are into the middle of Lent, and as we do every Sunday, we come before You to ask Your Touch upon those we have named aloud.  We find Peace and comfort when we pause from all the hectic noise that is everywhere and call out to You in prayer. And as we do week after week, we thank You for meeting all the needs of those we have named aloud but also for those we are about to name in our individual silent prayers.  We ask that You would be gentle with those who continue to struggle with the loss of their loved ones.  There wounds are still tender, their pain still fresh, and their hearts and spirits are bent and even broken.   But here and now, O God, hear our individual prayers…

Indeed, O God, thank You… and now let us join together as we pray 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 sins as we forgive those who have sinned against us.  And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil.  For Thine is the Kingdom, the Power and the Glory, forever and ever.  Amen.

Offertory Invitation

Your gifts help us maintain a mission of outreach that goes beyond ourselves…so thank for helping sustain the ministry of First Church in Pembroke and, on behalf of the people whose quality of life is enhanced by your gifts and our outreach, we say thank you.  Our goal is to make a difference in the world, the way God is making a difference in us.  Thanks again… and may God continue to bless you and us all!

Offertory    What Wondrous Love is This

Doxology

Closing Hymn  Amazing Grace

Benediction –  As we all head out on our separate ways, we pray you will step outside sometime today, and frankly every day, to look up to the heavens and give God thanks for the many blessings in which we are surrounded…. And remember, we all go in the Name of God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit.   Have a great week, be a blessing, and hopefully we’ll see you back here next Sunday at 10am.  God bless….

Postlude  On the Wind of Spirit 

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Scriptures for Sunday, March 14, 2021

The first reading: Ephesians 2:1-10  (Lector JoEllen Graham)

Once you were dead because of your disobedience and your many sins. You used to live in sin, just like the rest of the world, obeying the devil—the commander of the powers in the unseen world. He is the spirit at work in the hearts of those who refuse to obey God. All of us used to live that way, following the passionate desires and inclinations of our sinful nature. By our very nature we were subject to God’s anger, just like everyone else.

But God is so rich in mercy, and he loved us so much, that even though we were dead because of our sins, he gave us life when he raised Christ from the dead. (It is only by God’s grace that you have been saved!) For he raised us from the dead along with Christ and seated us with him in the heavenly realms because we are united with Christ Jesus. So God can point to us in all future ages as examples of the incredible wealth of his grace and kindness toward us, as shown in all he has done for us who are united with Christ Jesus.

God saved you by his grace when you believed. And you can’t take credit for this; it is a gift from God. Salvation is not a reward for the good things we have done, so none of us can boast about it. 10 For we are God’s masterpiece. He has created us anew in Christ Jesus, so we can do the good things he planned for us long ago.

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The Gospel: John 3:14-21  (Pastor Matt)

14 And as Moses lifted up the bronze snake on a pole in the wilderness, so the Son of Man must be lifted up, 15 so that everyone who believes in him will have eternal life.

16 “For this is how God loved the world: He gave his one and only Son, so that everyone who believes in him will not perish but have eternal life. 17 God sent his Son into the world not to judge the world, but to save the world through him.

18 “There is no judgment against anyone who believes in Him. But anyone who does not believe in Him has already been judged for not believing in God’s one and only Son. 19 And the judgment is based on this fact: God’s light came into the world, but people loved the darkness more than the light, for their actions were evil. 20 All who do evil hate the light and refuse to go near it for fear their sins will be exposed. 21 But those who do what is right come to the light so others can see that they are doing what God wants.”

End of the Scriptures for this Sunday…

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