THE FOURTH SUNDAY OF ADVENT
DECEMBER 20, 2020 | 10:00 AM
WELCOME TO ONLINE WORSHIP AT FIRST CHURCH!
Welcome to all who gather to worship online today! We hope you feel the warmth of God’s presence and welcome right where you’re at. If this if your first time joining us online, we are honored by your presence and hope to see you again soon! To stay informed, please subscribe to our weekly email.
First, we’re not just friendly, we’re friends! Our primary belief is that everyone (no exceptions!) is created in the loving image of God, who is love itself.
Second, in everything we do, we strive to live our mission: By the power of Christ, we are blessed to be a blessing!
WE GATHER TO WORSHIP
(the people’s words in bold print)
PRELUDE + CHIMING OF THE HOUR
“The Angel Gabriel From Heaven Came”
(MUSIC: GABRIEL'S MESSAGE, arr. J. Behnke)
CALL TO WORSHIP (by Christine Sine, 2012)
Let us prepare our hearts as we await the coming of our Lord!
Let us watch for the one who heard our cries
and shouldered the suffering of our world.
Let us anticipate the coming of Christ’s eternal world
with wholeness, reconciliation, and plenty for all.
Let us wait in expectation for the day
when God’s glory is revealed in all its fullness.
LIGHTING THE ADVENT CANDLE
“Away in a Manger”
CALL TO CONFESSION
PRAYER OF CONFESSION
Faithful God, we know that you are always present to guide us, yet we often make plans without listening to your direction. We aren’t open to your presence in the minutia of our lives, and we are amazed that you care so much for us. Forgive us, and help us see ourselves – and others – the way you see your creation: good, and worthy of redemption. In Christ, Amen.
DECLARATION OF FORGIVENESS
How can this be? That God regards us so completely? It is truly a
miraculous gift of mercy and grace!
In Jesus Christ we are forgiven! Amen!
WE EXPERIENCE GOD’S WORD
SCRIPTURE READING - THE EPISTLE LESSON
25 Now to God who is able to strengthen you according to my gospel and the proclamation of Jesus Christ, according to the revelation of the mystery that was kept secret for long ages 26 but is now disclosed, and through the prophetic writings is made known to all the Gentiles, according to the command of the eternal God, to bring about the obedience of faith— 27 to the only wise God, through Jesus Christ, to whom be the glory forever! Amen.
“No Wind at the Window”
(MUSIC: Traditional/John Bell, arr. Jennifer Breedlove)
SCRIPTURE READING - THE GOSPEL LESSON
26 In the sixth month the angel Gabriel was sent by God to a town in Galilee called Nazareth, 27 to a virgin engaged to a man whose name was Joseph, of the house of David. The virgin’s name was Mary. 28 And he came to her and said, “Greetings, favored one! The Lord is with you.” 29 But she was much perplexed by his words and pondered what sort of greeting this might be. 30 The angel said to her, “Do not be afraid, Mary, for you have found favor with God. 31 And now, you will conceive in your womb and bear a son, and you will name him Jesus. 32 He will be great, and will be called the Son of the Most High, and the Lord God will give to him the throne of his ancestor David. 33 He will reign over the house of Jacob forever, and of his kingdom there will be no end.” 34 Mary said to the angel, “How can this be, since I am a virgin?” 35 The angel said to her, “The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you; therefore the child to be born will be holy; he will be called Son of God. 36 And now, your relative Elizabeth in her old age has also conceived a son; and this is the sixth month for her who was said to be barren. 37 For nothing will be impossible with God.” 38 Then Mary said, “Here am I, the servant of the Lord; let it be with me according to your word.” Then the angel departed from her.
"Regarded by God"
Rev. Lisa Martin, Pastor
WE RESPOND TO GOD’S WORD
ADVENT DECLARATION OF FAITH (Adapted from the PC(USA) Study Catechism, Q 8)
How do you understand the love and power of God?
Through Jesus Christ. In his life of compassion, his death on the cross, and his resurrection from the dead, we see how vast is God's love for the world — a love that is ready to suffer for our sakes, yet so strong that nothing will prevail against it. Thanks be to God!
PRAYERS OF THE PEOPLE & 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 debts, as we forgive our debtors; and lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil. For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, forever. Amen.
WE DEPART TO SERVE
“That Boy-Child of Mary”
“Awake! Awake, and Greet the New Morn”
(MUSIC: M. Haugen, arr. B. Thoreson)
GOD’S TITHES + OUR OFFERINGS
If you wish to contribute to the work of First Church, you may give online using the button below, or mail your gift to
First Presbyterian Church
810 Georgia Avenue
Lynn Haven, FL 32444.
Virtual Open House This Afternoon! The congregation is invited to join Pastor Lisa and Roy anytime between 2-3 this afternoon (12/20) for a Virtual Open House! Simply click on this Zoom link and join the festivities: OPEN HOUSE