21st Century Africana Worship Resources for Baptism of the Lord Sunday

by Theon Johnson III

Baptismal Prayer Meditation
(Based on Acts 19)
We take time from our busy schedules to reflect on the holiness of baptism. We stand amazed at the wondrous works of the Lord and are humbled. God's goodness radiates through us as we experience the joy of coming into fellowship. We come with humble and willing hearts to worship the Lord. We remember our baptism and pray for all who will be baptized. We pray that God will bring us and them into sweet fellowship found through baptism and remind us of the truth that lies in its holiness.

Call to Worship
(Based on Genesis 1:1-5)
The created heavens and earth reveal your incomparable glory.

The Lord is good and worthy to be praised!

Establishing order from chaos expresses the expanse of your mighty hand.
Light from darkness testifies, too.

The Lord is good and worthy to be praised!

You build firm foundations from nothingness;
And you build hope from the uncertainty of the universe.

The Lord is good and worthy to be praised!

You give birds of the air a song to sing And the creatures of the earth the spirit of freedom.

The Lord is good and worthy to be praised!

We praise you with everything we are, because you are good and worthy to be praised.
You, O Lord, are our all in all; how excellent are your works in all creation.
My soul cries out "Hallelujah!" when I consider your awesomeness all around us.

We are thankful for the ways YOU show up in the world:
For your goodness, your mercy, your peace, your hope,
For your blessings abundant.
Have mercy on us.
Strengthen, sustain, protect us.
Use us in Your service.
Help us live out everything you have called us to do;
For You, O Lord, are good and worthy to be praised!

Alternate Call to Worship
What a mighty God we serve!
Let us give praise to the Lord of all Creation
The time has come…the wait is over.
Stand up and celebrate the goodness of the Lord with me.

People: The Lord is alright!

Remember the people who have gone on before. Ancestors, friends, preachers, teachers, and prophets have told stories about the goodness of the Lord, even though many of them had nothing. They lifted up praises and ascribed glory and majesty to the Lord who sustained them.

People: The Lord is alright!

In all the earth, there is none like you, Lord. Mighty are your works! Your craftwork makes this world marvelous.

All: The Lord is alright! Praise be to God on high, who is worthy of all glory, honor, and majesty!

Responsive Reading
(Portions from Psalm 29)
Leader: God inhabits the praises of true worshipers.

People: The voice of the Lord is calling us to true worship.

Leader: God is aware of the "true me" hidden under fancy clothes, expensive cars, fine houses, and big smiles.

People: The voice of the Lord is calling us to evaluate who and what we truly are.

Leader: We assemble today with real-life issues that bring joy and sadness, certainty and uncertainty, feelings of community, and feelings of loneliness at the same table; we are in need of God's guiding spirit, even if we do not appear to be in need.

People: The voice of the Lord is calling us to bring all our problems to the altar.

Leader: Problems that plague our communities, local and worldwide, are in need of people willing to stand up for truth and action.

People: The voice of the Lord is calling us to stand up and take action in our communities.

All: Your voice reminds us of truth and power. Your voice calls us to respond in faith. Our hearts rejoice as we consider the goodness of your love, and we strive to answer your voice. Congregational Prayer
Eternal Creator:
We are in need of a word from you. We come realizing that we are imperfect disciples trying to grab the attention of a perfect God. We are vessels with issues. We sail on turbulent seas, sailing toward shores of a wholly sufficient land. We are happy in your presence, even though we are tired and weary from the storms of life. Be for us tranquil waters of stability so that our journey on stormy seas will not overcome us. We sail into your harbor in need your protection. We sail into your harbor in need of your power. We sail into your harbor in need of your love. We simply sail in needing you. Bless the works of our community so that we can together live out the great commission to spread good news amid the stormy waves of life. Amen.


About the Author: Theon Johnson III isasenior at Millsaps College majoring in philosophy-religious studieswith a minor in education. Theonserves as a member of the National United Methodist Student Movement Steering Committee (GBHEM), as a member of the Division with Ministries on Young People (Discipleship Ministries), andhe has served as musician at Canton United Methodist Churchfor seven years.

Categories: Worship, Worship Planning, Lectionary Planning Archive, Services and Liturgies, 21st Century Africana, 21st Century Liturgy