PRELUDE:  Seed, Scattered and Sown by Anne Roberts

WELCOME AND ANNOUNCEMENTS

CALL TO WORSHIP

HYMN:  O Lord, You are My God and King  [Jerusalem]

 PRAYER

INTROIT:  A Sower Came from Ancient Hills by John D. Horman

A Sower came from ancient hills and cast good seed abroad: his field, ten thousand human hearts; his seed, the Word of God.  And some who listened would not hear, and some who heard forgot.  But some received in fertile soil the truth the Sower taught.  O Christ, you come among us still, the Sower and the Seed.  As once you sowed the truth of God in glowing word and deed, implant your Word in waiting hearts, and let it there take hold, until it bears in fruitful lives a harvest hundredfold.  [Herman G. Stuempfle, Jr.]

PRAYER

SCRIPTURE LESSON:  Matthew 13:1-9, 18-23

ANTHEM:  Behold a Sower — Early American Hymn/arr. by Crawford Thoburn

Behold a Sower!  From afar goes onward forth with might; the rolling years the furrows are, the seed, the growing light; for all the just God’s Word is sown, it springeth up always; the tender blade is hope’s young dawn, the harvest, love’s new day.  O Lord of life, to you we lift our hearts in praise for those, your prophets, who have shown Your gift of grace that ever grows, of truth that spreads from shore to shore, of wisdom’s widening ray, of light that shineth more and more unto the perfect day.  Shine forth, O light, that we may see, with hearts all unafraid, the meaning and the mystery of things that You have made; shine forth, and let the long dark past beneath the beam grow bright; shine forth, and touch the future vast with Your untroubled light.  Light up Your Word; the ancient page from all past bondage free, light up our way; lead forth this age in love’s large liberty.  Oh, Light of light!  Within us dwell, through us Your radiance pour, that word of life all truth may tell, and praise You evermore!  [Washington Gladden]

SERMON: “Am I Fertile Ground for God’s Grace?”

HYMN: Lead Me, Guide Me  [Lead Me, Guide Me]

PRAYER

BENEDICTION

RESPONSE: Look to the Day by John Rutter

Look to the day when the world seems new again: morning so fresh you could touch the sky; the earth smells sweet and every flower looks bright, shining in a dewy light as you wander by.  Taking the time to enjoy each moment; tasting the fruits spread along your way, knowing there’s time to spare, dreams you can dream and share: look to the day.  Look to the day when the earth is green again: promise of spring after winter’s sleep.  The sounds of life returning fill the air, music that’s forever there for your heart to keep. Deep in the earth lay the seed of life renewed, quiet and strong till the time of spring: life in each bud and shoot, life in each flower and fruit, look to that day when earth shall sing.  Look to the light that will drive out darkness; look to the hope that will conquer fear.  God’s strength uphold us till the fight is won, ‘till we see our task is done when the day is here.  Look for that day when there shall be no more pain; sorrow and sighing shall pass away.  Pray for the day to come, trust that the day will come, look to that day.  Lord, we give thanks for the gifts of life and health; plant a new seed in our hearts, we pray: help us to see, O Lord, how it could be, O Lord; look to the day.  

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