Monday morning March 14

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Opening response

Lord, open our lips
and our mouth will proclaim your praise.
Let your ways be known upon earth,
your saving power among the nations.

Prayer of thanksgiving

Blessed are you, Lord God of our salvation,
to you be praise and glory forever.
As a man of sorrows and acquainted with grief
your only Son was lifted up
that he might draw the whole world to himself.
May we walk this day in the way of the cross
and always be ready to share its weight,
declaring your love for all the world.
Blessed be God: Father, Son and Holy Spirit.
Blessed be God forever.


Drooping Soul, Shake Off Thy Fears

Charles Wesley
Drooping soul, shake off thy fears,
Fearful soul be strong, be bold;
Tarry till the Lord appears.
Never, never quit thy hold!
Murmur not at his delay,
Dare not set thy God a time,
Calmly for his coming stay,
Leave it, leave it all to him.

Fainting soul, be bold, be strong
Wait the leisure of thy Lord;
Though it seem to tarry long,
True and faithful is his word;
On his word my soul I cast
(He cannot himself deny)
Surely it shall speak at last;
It shall speak, and shall not lie.

Everyone that seeks shall find,
Everyone that asks shall have,
Christ, the Savior of mankind,
Willing, able, all to save;
I shall his salvation see,
I in faith on Jesus call,
I from sin shall he set free,
Perfectly set free from all.

Lord, my time is in thine hand,
Weak and helpless as I am,
Surely thou canst make me stand;
l believe in Jesus’ name:
Savior in temptation thou;
Thou hast saved me heretofore,
Thou from sin dost save me now,
Thou shalt save me evermore.

Confession of sin

Come, Holy Spirit of God,
and search our hearts with the light of Christ.

Our Lord Jesus Christ said:
The first commandment is this:
‘Israel, listen! Our God is the one Lord, 
and you must love the Lord your God with all your heart, 
with all your being, with all your mind, 
and with all your strength.’

The second is this: ‘You must love your neighbor as yourself.’
No other commandment is greater than these.
All the Law and the Prophets depend on these two commandments.

Amen. Lord, have mercy.

After a period of reflection

Come, let us return to the Lord and say:

Lord our God,
in our sin we have avoided your call.
Our love for you is like a morning cloud,
like the dew that goes away early.
Have mercy on us;
deliver us from judgment;
bind up our wounds and revive us;
in Jesus Christ our Lord.

cf Hosea 6

May almighty God,
who sent his Son into the world to save sinners,
bring us his pardon and peace, now and forever.

The Word of God

Psalm 73

I have taken my refuge in you, my Lord God.

Truly God is good to Israel,
    to those who are pure of heart.
But me? My feet had almost stumbled;
    my steps had nearly slipped
    because I envied the arrogant;
    I observed how the wicked are well off:
They suffer no pain;
    their bodies are fit and strong.
They are never in trouble;
    they aren’t weighed down like other people.
That’s why they wear arrogance like a necklace,
    why violence covers them like clothes.
Their eyes bulge out from eating so well;
    their hearts overflow with delusions.
They scoff and talk so cruel;
    from their privileged positions
    they plan oppression.
Their mouths dare to speak against heaven!
    Their tongues roam the earth!
That’s why people keep going back to them,
    keep approving what they say.
And what they say is this: “How could God possibly know!
    Does the Most High know anything at all!”
Look at these wicked ones,
    always relaxed, piling up the wealth!
Meanwhile, I’ve kept my heart pure for no good reason;
I’ve washed my hands to stay innocent for nothing.
I’m weighed down all day long.
    I’m punished every morning.
If I said, “I will talk about all this,”
    I would have been unfaithful to your children.
But when I tried to understand these things,
    it just seemed like hard work
    until I entered God’s sanctuary
        and understood what would happen to the wicked.
You will definitely put them on a slippery path;
    you will make them fall into ruin!
How quickly they are devastated,
    utterly destroyed by terrors!
As quickly as a dream departs from someone waking up, my Lord,
    when you are stirred up, you make them disappear.
When my heart was bitter,
    when I was all cut up inside,
I was stupid and ignorant.
    I acted like nothing but an animal toward you.
But I was still always with you!
    You held my strong hand!
You have guided me with your advice;
    later you will receive me with glory.
Do I have anyone else in heaven?
    There’s nothing on earth I desire except you.
My body and my heart fail,
    but God is my heart’s rock and my share forever.
Look! Those far from you die;
    you annihilate all those who are unfaithful to you.
But me? It’s good for me to be near God.
    I have taken my refuge in you, my Lord God,
        so I can talk all about your works!

Glory to the Father and to the Son
and to the Holy Spirit;
as it was in the beginning is now
and will be forever. Amen.

I have taken my refuge in you, my Lord God.

Psalm prayer

Holy God,
may we find wisdom in your presence
and set our hope not on uncertain riches
but on the love that holds us to the end;
in Jesus Christ our Lord.

Psalm 121

The Lord will protect you from all evil.

I raise my eyes toward the mountains.
    Where will my help come from?
My help comes from the Lord,
    the maker of heaven and earth.
God won’t let your foot slip.
    Your protector won’t fall asleep on the job.
No! Israel’s protector
    never sleeps or rests!
The Lord is your protector;
    the Lord is your shade right beside you.
The sun won’t strike you during the day;
    neither will the moon at night.
The Lord will protect you from all evil;
    God will protect your very life.
The Lord will protect you on your journeys—
    whether going or coming—
    from now until forever from now.

Glory to the Father and to the Son
and to the Holy Spirit;
as it was in the beginning is now
and will be forever. Amen.

The Lord will protect you from all evil.

Psalm prayer

Lord, ever watchful and faithful,
we look to you to be our defense
and we lift our hearts to know your help;
through Jesus Christ our Lord.

Old Testament reading
Exodus 8:1-19

Then the Lord said to Moses, “Go to Pharaoh and tell him: This is what the Lord says: Let my people go so that they can worship me. If you refuse to let them go, then I’ll send a plague of frogs over your whole country. The Nile will overflow with frogs. They’ll get into your palace, into your bedroom and onto your bed, into your officials’ houses, and among all your people, and even into your ovens and bread pans. The frogs will crawl up on you, your people, and all your officials.” And the Lord said to Moses, “Tell Aaron, ‘Stretch out your hand with your shepherd’s rod over the rivers, the canals, and the marshes, and make the frogs crawl up all over the land of Egypt.’” So Aaron stretched out his hand over the waters of Egypt. The frogs crawled up and covered the land of Egypt. However, the Egyptian religious experts were able to do the same thing by their secret knowledge. They too made frogs crawl up onto the land of Egypt.

Then Pharaoh called for Moses and Aaron, and said, “If you pray to the Lord to get rid of the frogs from me and my people, then I’ll let the people go so that they can offer sacrifices to the Lord.”

Moses said to Pharaoh, “Have it your way. When should I pray for you and your officials and your people to remove the frogs from your houses, courtyards, and fields? They’ll stay only in the Nile.”

Pharaoh said, “Tomorrow!”

Moses said, “Just as you say! That way you will know that there is no one like the Lord our God. The frogs will leave you, your houses, your officials, and your people. They’ll stay only in the Nile.” After Moses and Aaron had left Pharaoh, Moses cried out to the Lord about the frogs that the Lord had brought on Pharaoh. The Lord did as Moses asked. The frogs died inside the houses, out in the yards, and in the fields. They gathered them together in big piles, and the land began to stink. But when Pharaoh saw that the disaster was over, he became stubborn again and wouldn’t listen to them, just as the Lord had said.

Then the Lord said to Moses, “Tell Aaron, ‘Stretch out your shepherd’s rod and hit the land’s dirt so that lice appear in the whole land of Egypt.’” They did this. Aaron stretched out his hand with his shepherd’s rod, hit the land’s dirt, and lice appeared on both people and animals. All the land’s dirt turned into lice throughout the whole land of Egypt.

The religious experts tried to produce lice by their secret knowledge, but they weren’t able to do it. There were lice on people and animals. The religious experts said to Pharaoh, “This is something only God could do!” But Pharaoh was stubborn, and he wouldn’t listen to them, just as the Lord had said.

Silence may be kept.

New Testament reading
Hebrews 11:17-31

By faith Abraham offered Isaac when he was tested. The one who received the promises was offering his only son. He had been told concerning him, Your legitimate descendants will come from Isaac. He figured that God could even raise him from the dead. So in a way he did receive him back from the dead.

By faith Isaac also blessed Jacob and Esau concerning their future.

By faith Jacob blessed each of Joseph’s sons as he was dying and bowed in worship over the head of his staff.

By faith Joseph recalled the exodus of the Israelites at the end of his life, and gave instructions about burying his bones.

By faith Moses was hidden by his parents for three months when he was born, because they saw that the child was beautiful and they weren’t afraid of the king’s orders.

By faith Moses refused to be called the son of Pharaoh’s daughter when he was grown up. He chose to be mistreated with God’s people instead of having the temporary pleasures of sin. He thought that the abuses he suffered for Christ were more valuable than the treasures of Egypt, since he was looking forward to the reward.

By faith he left Egypt without being afraid of the king’s anger. He kept on going as if he could see what is invisible.

By faith he kept the Passover and the sprinkling of blood, in order that the destroyer could not touch their firstborn children.

By faith they crossed the Red Sea as if they were on dry land, but when the Egyptians tried it, they were drowned.

By faith Jericho’s walls fell after the people marched around them for seven days.

By faith Rahab the prostitute wasn’t killed with the disobedient because she welcomed the spies in peace.

Silence may be kept.

Gospel canticle
The Benedictus (The Song of Zechariah)

The message of the cross is foolishness to those who are being destroyed. But it is the power of God for those of us who are being saved.

Bless the Lord God of Israel
because he has come to help and has delivered his people.
He has raised up a mighty savior for us in his servant David’s house,
just as he said through the mouths of his holy prophets long ago.
He has brought salvation from our enemies
and from the power of all those who hate us.
He has shown the mercy promised to our ancestors,
and remembered his holy covenant,
the solemn pledge he made to our ancestor Abraham.
He has granted that we would be rescued
from the power of our enemies
so that we could serve him without fear,
in holiness and righteousness in God’s eyes,
for as long as we live.
You, child, will be called a prophet of the Most High,
for you will go before the Lord to prepare his way.
You will tell his people how to be saved
through the forgiveness of their sins.
Because of our God’s deep compassion,
the dawn from heaven will break upon us,
to give light to those who are sitting in darkness
and in the shadow of death,
to guide us on the path of peace.”

Luke 1:68-79

Glory to the Father and to the Son
and to the Holy Spirit;
as it was in the beginning is now
and will be forever. Amen.

The message of the cross is foolishness to those who are being destroyed. But it is the power of God for those of us who are being saved.

Brief silence.

The Apostle’s Creed

Let us unite in this historic confession of the Christian faith: 

I believe in God, the Father Almighty,
creator of heaven and earth.

I believe in Jesus Christ, his only Son, our Lord,
who was conceived by the Holy Spirit,
born of the Virgin Mary,
suffered under Pontius Pilate,
was crucified, died, and was buried;
he descended to the dead.
On the third day he rose again;
he ascended into heaven,
is seated at the right hand of the Father,
and will come again to judge the living and the dead.

I believe in the Holy Spirit,
the holy catholic church,
the communion of saints,
the forgiveness of sins,
the resurrection of the body,
and the life everlasting. Amen.


Intercession and thanksgiving

Prayers are offered
for the day and its tasks
for the world and its needs
for the Church and her life


Lord, in your mercy
hear our prayer.

Silence may be kept.

Collect of the day

Most merciful God,
who by the death and resurrection of your Son Jesus Christ
delivered and saved the world:
grant that by faith in him who suffered on the cross
we may triumph in the power of his victory;
through Jesus Christ your Son our Lord,
who is alive and reigns with you,
in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
one God, now and forever.      

The Lord’s Prayer

Standing at the foot of the cross,
as our Savior taught us, so we pray

Our Father in heaven,
hallowed be your name,
your kingdom come,
your will be done,
on earth as in heaven.
Give us today our daily bread.
Forgive us our sins
as we forgive those who sin against us.
Lead us not into temptation
but deliver us from evil.
For the kingdom, the power,
and the glory are yours
now and forever.


May Christ, who bore our sins on the cross,
set us free to serve him with joy.