Worship and Bow Down

Selah - Life in a Minor Key

Third Sunday in Lent, Year A

Worship is not just, or even primarily, a head thing. It is a whole body thing; we pour ourselves out in worship. We enter the worship space and nothing else matters but the community who gathers and the God we worship.

Selah: Life in a Minor Key - Worship & Bow Down

Psalm 95

Fellowship – Snacks or a Meal (10 minutes with snacks; longer, obviously, if there is a meal)

Gathering Time (5-10 minutes). In pairs or groups of three, have participants share their most memorable worship experience.

Group Dialogue (Approximately 30 minutes)

Read: Psalm 95

  • Every Sunday worship (including and especially during Lent) is a mini-Easter celebration. How have you experienced Lent as a time of penitence, letting go, and confession? How can joy also be part of our Lenten journey?
  • Referring to Exodus 17:1-7 and Numbers 20:1-13, what do the references to Meribah and Massah (v. 5) remind the readers of? [These passages occur at the beginning and end of the Israelites’ wilderness wanderings. In both instances, they complain of the lack of water and of being freed from slavery. “Why did you lead us away from Egypt?” They were tempted to return to slavery instead of persevering and trusting in what God had in store for them in the future.] How does worship (mini-Easter celebrations) direct our attention to God’s future? [It reminds us of God’s presence, even in the long, dark journey where temptations continue; it prefigures the great banquet through Communion; it reminds us that what God has done for Christ in the Resurrection, God will do for the church.]
  • How might we experience worship differently depending on the posture we take as we enter worship? What difference would it make if we came with joy, lament, praise, grief, or a mixture of all these emotions? Next Sunday, try to remain focused on the fact that we, as the people of God, are the priests and offerings in worship (and are thus not there to be entertained).
  • Read or sing the spiritual below and then answer the following question: “Notice the last line of the refrain. In spirituals, a common theme was to point to a world of freedom. How is that similar to the themes we find in Lent?” If appropriate, end your group’s time by singing the spiritual one last time.

Suggested Spiritual
Steal Away

Refrain:
Steal away, steal away,
steal away to Jesus!
Steal away, steal away home;
I ain't got long to stay here.

1 My Lord, he calls me;
he calls me by the thunder.
The trumpet sounds within my soul;
I ain't got long to stay here. [Refrain]

2 Green trees are bending;
poor sinners stand a trembling.
The trumpet sounds within my soul;
I ain't got long to stay here. [Refrain]

3 My Lord, he calls me;
he calls me by the lightning.
The trumpet sounds within my soul;
I ain't got long to stay here. [Refrain]

Prayer (10 minutes). Share prayer requests and respond appropriately.

Sending Forth (2 minutes). End by praying the following or similar prayer:

God of deliverance, freedom, liberation, and salvation. We long for a day when “righteousness is at home” (2 Peter 3:13). Lord, we give you thanks that we can experience a foretaste of that freedom now. Help us to notice those in our community who are longing for deliverance. Amen.

In This Series...


Ash Wednesday, Year A - Lectionary Planning Notes First Sunday in Lent, Year A - Lectionary Planning Notes Second Sunday in Lent, Year A - Lectionary Planning Notes Third Sunday in Lent, Year A - Lectionary Planning Notes Fourth Sunday in Lent, Year A - Lectionary Planning Notes Fifth Sunday in Lent, Year A - Lectionary Planning Notes

Colors


  • Purple

In This Series...


Ash Wednesday, Year A - Lectionary Planning Notes First Sunday in Lent, Year A - Lectionary Planning Notes Second Sunday in Lent, Year A - Lectionary Planning Notes Third Sunday in Lent, Year A - Lectionary Planning Notes Fourth Sunday in Lent, Year A - Lectionary Planning Notes Fifth Sunday in Lent, Year A - Lectionary Planning Notes