Estes Park United Methodist Church
March 14, 2021
The Fourth Sunday of Lent
Order of Worship
Prelude – At the Cross
Call to Worship
Leader: Friends of God, believe this – God loved the world, God loves the world. We are the beloved!
People: May the truth of this great love story, shine through our worship today, and renew our sense of calling.
Leader: So come, with your tiredness, your frustrations and your discouragements; come with your doubts, your fears, and your longings; come, to discover yet again how Jesus reveals God’s love and mercy.
People: Come, in friendship to God and to each other, and in friendship to the world, to listen for God’s Word to us, to offer our prayers, and to renew our calling.
All: Friends of God, let us worship!
Opening Prayer (Unison)
Holy God, we thank you for this season of Lent, during which you invite us to come, to examine, to confess, to be renewed and healed. We have begun this journey eagerly, anticipating that, like Jesus in the wilderness, there are things which need to be lost so that better things may be found. Grant us courage to set aside easy answers and quick fixes in favor of your word that penetrates and transforms us. Enable us to see past the immediate satisfaction of our wants that we may choose instead the eternally fulfilling grace of your presence. Embolden our faith that we may trust you rather than the false and empty promises of our age. Thank you for walking this Lenten journey with us. May we emerge from it prepared to serve you with renewed passion and joy. Amen.
Opening Hymn – When Morning Gilds the Sky
Prayer of Confession
Leader: The Lord is a good and faithful God, yet we doubt and question God’s plans and intentions toward us. Let us confess our sins, that we might bereconciled to Christ and one another.
People: Merciful Savior, we confess that what we say we believe and the beliefs our lives profess frequently aren’t the same. We say that you are good, yet we’re quick to blame you when discomfort, turmoil or distress arises. We say that you love us, but we act as if your will for our lives cannot be trusted. We proclaim that we are forgiven, yet we continue to carry the burdensome baggage of our past. Forgive us, Lord. Give us the courage to look honestly at the disparity between what we say we believe and the truth that our actions and attitudes tell. We pray for the grace to close the gap between the two. Amen.
Assurance of Pardon
Leader: Friends, the mercy of Jesus Christ covers all our sins and is from everlasting to everlasting. Know that we are forgiven and be at peace.
People: Thanks be to God! Amen!
Prayer of Blessing
Scripture Lesson – John 3:14-21
Special Music – God So Loved the World
Sermon – For God So Loved the World
Closing Hymn – What Wondrous Love is This
Postlude – At Calvary
Pastor: Rev. Ann Steiner Lantz
Recorded Worship Liturgist: Cay Lacey
Zoom Worship Liturgist: Dale Beck
Director of Music: Jim Flanigan
Pianist: Nancy Gunter
Videographer: Jim Ecklund