Wake up! Listen up! Be Transformed! (Astrid Melatunan)

Worship on the Lord’s Day
Transfiguration Sunday
10:00 am February 27, 2022
Online & Onsite (Mixed Presence) Gathering
as a Worshipping Community
Led by: The Rev William Ball (In sanctuary)
Message: Astrid Melatunan (on ZOOM)
Children’s time: The Re. William Ball
Music director: Binu Kapadia     Vocalist: Lynn Vaughan
Elder: Gina Kottke

We gather to worship God

Music prelude

Greeting
L: The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you
P: and also with you

Lighting of the Christ candle
Welcome and announcements
Silent preparation for worship

Opening words

L: Will you come to the highest mountain?
P: We come to worship the Lord.
L: Jesus is waiting, waiting to greet you.
P: Jesus, we come. Jesus, we’re here.
L: Come!
P: We come to worship the Lord

Opening praise: Love the Lord your God

Love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your mind with all your strength with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your mind with all your strength Love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your mind with all your strength.

I will serve the Lord with all my heart With all my soul, with all my mind with all my strength with all my heart With all my soul I will serve the Lord with all my heart With all my soul, with all my mind And with all my strength

Songwriter: Lincoln Brewster © Universal Music Publishing Group. Reprinted with permission under CCLI, License #3095377​. All rights reserved. Permission to stream the music in this service obtained from CCLI

Call to worship:
L: We have seen the light of God;
P: on high mountains of celebration and in the ecstasy of a lover’s embrace.
L: We have seen the light of God;
P: through the bitter scorn of betrayal and the searing chasm of grief.
L: We have seen the light of God;
P: with eyes that have been shaded, with eyes that have been opened, with eyes that have been blinded.
L: We have seen the light of God.[1]

Prayers of approach and lament

Lord,
you call us to draw near,
yet we fail to hear your voice.
We sleepwalk through life,
ignoring the needs of people all around us
and worrying about our own desires.
Forgive us:
when we shut out the call
to climb into your presence;
when we make excuses
to put off that journey.
Have mercy on us, O Lord,
as we silently open our hearts
and confess our sins:
(Time of silence)

Hear our pleas, O God, and lift us to newness of life. Amen.[2]

Music Response: I waited, I waited on You, Lord (x2)

 I waited, I waited on you, Lord, I waited, I waited on you, Lord, You bent down low and remembered me, When you heard my prayer …

 

Words: Psalm 40; Music: J. Bell; © WGRG 1987 Iona Community, GIA Publications Inc Reprinted with permission under ONE LICENSE, License #A735555​. All rights reserved. Permission to stream the music in this service obtained from ONE LICENSE

Assurance of God’s forgiveness

Hear the good news! Who is in a position to condemn? Only Christ, and Christ died for us, Christ rose for us, Christ reigns in power for us, Christ prays for us. (Romans 8:34)

We listen for the voice of God

Children’s time

Music Gradual: Open our eyes, Lord

Open our eyes, Lord, we want to see Jesus, to reach out and touch him and say that we love him, Open our ears, Lord, and help us to listen. Open our eyes, Lord We want to see Jesus

Words and music: Bob Cull; © Maranatha! Music 1976; The Copyright Company Reprinted with permission under CCLI, License #3095377​. All rights reserved. Permission to stream the music in this service obtained from CCLI

Story/Song: About being children of the Light

We are children, children of the Light

We are shining in the darkness of the night

Hope for this world, joy throughout the land.

Touch the hearts of everyone, take everybody’s hand.

Come and gather round the flame, share the light in his name

We the children of the light

As the wind blows where it will, spread the news to everyone

There’s still plenty of time, for we have just begun.

Join the song of all the earth, we’ve a dream a dream to share

And a promise of re-birth

Let the earth feel the warmth of his love here in our hearts

We’ve still many a dream and promises to kee

Words & Music by Eugene O’Reilly. Copyright © 2001 (in the UK) CJM MUSIC. One Licence ##A735555 . CCLI, License #3095377.

Prayer

The Lord’s Prayer (535)

Transition music

Hymn/Song: We have come at Christ’s own bidding

We have come at Christ’s own bidding to this high and holy place, where we wait with hope and longing for some token of God’s grace. Here we pray for new assurance that our faith is not in vain, searching like those first disciples for a sign both cleared and plain.

Light breaks in upon our darkness; splendor bathes the flesh joined word: Moses and Elijah marvel as the heavenly voice is heard. Eyes and hearts behold with wonder how the law and prophets meet: Christ with garments drenched in brightness, stands transfigured and complete.

Strengthened by this glimpse of glory, fearful lest our faith decline, we like Peter, find it tempting to remain and build a shrine, but true worship gives us courage to proclaim what we profess, that our daily lives may prove us people of the God we bless.

Words: Carl P. Daw Jr., © 1988 Hope Publishing Co. Music: David Ashley White © Selah Publishing Co. Inc 1991. Reprinted with permission under CCLI, License #3095377​. All rights reserved. Permission to stream the music in this service obtained from CCLI

Today’s Message

Scripture readings: Psalm 99(NRSV) and Luke 9:28-36 (NRSV)

Music Response: Thy word is a lamp unto my feet

Thy word is a lamp unto my feet  and a light unto my path (repeat)

Songwriters: Amy Lee Grant / Michael Whitaker Smith. Thy Word lyrics © Warner Chappell Music, Inc, Universal Music Publishing Group, DistroKid  Reprinted with permission under CCLI, License #3095377​. All rights reserved. Permission to stream the music in this service obtained from CCLI.

Homily: “Wake up! Listen Up! Be transformed!

I was in seminary for six years, living in the boarding house with a very tight schedule. We have to wake up at 3.30 am to pray for an hour every day. People fell asleep during worship because it was too early. I was one of those people. Have you ever experienced something similar?

This also happened to Peter, John, and James. What an incredible experience they were privileged to share when they were invited to the “prayer meeting” with Jesus on the mountaintop, but unfortunately, they were weighed down with sleep. Even though at that time, there was a spectacular moment that happened, as the Bible says, “while he was praying, the appearance of his face changed, and his clothes became dazzling white.” Also, the Bible says two people were conversing with Jesus, namely Moses and Elijah.

How in the world did the disciples come close to sleeping through this thing? We are told that the appearance of Jesus was as bright as “lightning.” I don’t know how bright the light is. However, the explanation in the footnote of The Harpens Collings Study Bible (NRSV) of this verse describes “dazzling light” as “the colour of heavenly garments,” the same word to describe the glory of God in the Book of Revelation. So it means that the lightning is pretty bright. Yet we are told that for a time during this epiphany of glory, the disciples were sleepy! Apparently, it took a bit before they even fully woke up (and then saw something so odd they must have wondered if they were not, in fact, still asleep and seeing a dream). But how could anyone be drowsy, even briefly, when such a spectacle was right in front of them?

It is not what you would expect. But maybe behind these questions, something of the core truth of the gospel starts to come out. Perhaps the sleepiness of the disciples is emblematic of how often they had missed the glory of Jesus when it shined right in front of them day in and day out throughout Jesus’ ministry.

If we look back to the previous verses, we have seen throughout the chapter that the identity of Christ was questioned. Herod was questioning, Who, then, is this I hear such things about? and some said, it is John the Baptist come from the dead. And then Jesus asks (still in chapter 9 verse 18-20), “Who do the crowds say I am?” They replied, “Some say John the Baptist; others say Elijah; and still others, that one of the prophets of long ago has come back to life.” He ask even more, “But who do you say that I am?” Peter answered, “The Messiah of God.””

They were walking with Jesus (almost) every day, but they still have no idea who Jesus is. The question is: Was there ever a time when Jesus was not wrapped and clothed in His own glory? They had missed the glory of Jesus. The truth is that Jesus did not need visibly to glow to display glory. This transfiguration is not a new form of Jesus, but instead it shows/reflects who Jesus really is. His glory shines—for those with eyes to see—just as brightly when he talked to lonely prostitutes and outcast lepers, when he saved wayward tax collectors and offered forgiveness to people who had never heard a forgiving syllable their whole lives long up to that point. The glory was there. It’s still there today in the church if only we don’t just sleep through it.

It is important to know that it was the eyes of the disciples that were opened to what really already is. This passage not only about the tranformation of Jesus, but it is also the transformation or the transfiguration of the eyes of the apostles. The Lord is always in glory. It is just our eyes that cannot see it. In fact, the whole world is filled with His glory. We say, “Holy holy holy are your Lord God Almighty. Heaven and earth are full of your glory.” Do we see His Glory?  – So the eyes of the apostles were open.

It is interesting here because Luke uses some terminology here where he says that they were ‘heavy with sleep’ and then uses the word they were ‘fully awake’. Other versions word it a little differently. Instead of “since they had stayed awake,” those versions say, “when they became fully awake, they saw his glory.” In other words, the disciples were getting drowsy, just as they would in the garden of Gethsemane. But something woke them up. It was the glory of God, revealed in their friend, Jesus.

. . . when they became fully awake, they saw his glory . . .

Even though they are in the presence of his unrestrained glory, they haven’t yet seen it. Because they are not yet awake. The glory is there. They are just not aware of it.

This journey of Lent is an invitation to become awake. His glory is breaking in all around us, all the time. Do we have the eyes to see it? What is keeping you distracted? What is numbing your senses? What is lulling you to sleep? What will it take to become awake?

Brothers and sisters, following Jesus must be with the awareness that we are fully awake. Because Peter, John, and James followed Jesus up to the mountaintop, but they did not see the glory of God until they were fully awake.

Again, His glory is breaking in all around us, in our Church, our marriage, our ministry, our congregation, our study, our relationship, our everyday life, all the time. Do we still see God’s presence in our daily life? Do we still see the peace of Christ in our community? Do we still see the Glory of God in every program we do in our church?

Are you fully awake?  So many of us are living in a season of life where we find ourselves tired and so prone to drifting off to sleep. It’s easy to be lulled into a kind of stupor – we aren’t really asleep, but we aren’t fully awake, either. We let ourselves drift, and we can get caught up in arguments over things that don’t have anything to do with following Jesus, thinking we know the only right way to be a Christian.

So, what will it take to become awake?

The voice from Heaven is still saying“This is my Son, whom I have chosen; listen to him.”

To follow Jesus requires obeying him, which requires hearing him, which requires listening to him. We are embarking on a journey together through Lent. Let we seek to listen to him. Instead of thinking we know what he meant, let’s focus on what he said. We will lean in to what he actually said. Hang on to his words, and let them challenge, shape, break and transform us.

Now that we are entering into the season of Lent, let me offer us this challenge. Would we be willing to wake up and listen to Jesus and respond to him actively, daily? This might sound easy but it isn’t. There is no way to predict how this might transform our life. Yet the Father cuts through the cloud and makes himself clear: “This is my Son, whom I have chosen; listen to him.”

Jesus says “Heaven and earth will pass away, but my words will never pass away” (Luke 21:33). So, while we are traveling to the cross from Transfiguration Mountain to the resurrection let me assure you that Jesus has something to share with you so that you will be transformed by Him. What will keep you awake in the presence of God? How will you listen him? What will it take to get yourself to a place where you can listen to him?

What a beautiful invitation we have today to see Christ and His glory to see heaven and earth filled with His glory. To learn that we need to be fully awake and listen to Jesus. May today be an awareness of our transfiguration and our own awareness that we are invited to be transformed into the likeness of Christ. Wake up! Listen up! And be transformed! I will end this sermon by reading a poem by Steve Garnaas-Holmes.

Listen for the One amid the others,
the one who awakens something lovely in you.

If you don’t turn from this clanging world to listen
you won’t hear him.

Listen for the voice that calls you Beloved,
the voice that calls you to love.

Listen to the voice that speaks of Creation’s wholeness,
that beckons you to completion.

A voice that leads you toward others,
not your own rising above and away.

Listen to the song of the immense flowering within you,
the risk and passion you can dance to.

You will hear it in stillness, not in frenzy,
in silence, not in noise.

You will hear it from those who are belittled,
not those who are honored by this besotted world.

The Beloved will not speak of success,
but death and resurrection.

Listen for one who speaks with hope and delight,
listen to him. Listen to him.

Hymn/Song: For all the love

For all the love that from our earliest days has gladdened life and brightened all our days, we bring you, Lord, our song of grateful praise, Hallelujah!

For all the truth from wisdom’s lighted page undimmed and pure, that shines from age to age, God’s holy word, our priceless heritage, Hallelujah!

For all the joy that childhood’s days have brought, the gifts of life, of sense and heart and thought, of life’s deep meaning to our spirits taught, Hallelujah!

For Christ the Lord, our Saviour and our friend,upon whose love and truth our souls depend, our hope, our strength, our joy that knows no end, Hallelujah!

Words: L.J.Smith; music: Carl Schalk. Both are public domain

We respond to serve God

Prayer of gratitude

Blessed are you, O God enthroned upon the cherubim, exalted over all your creation: You are our light and our hope in all generations. We acclaim you, Holy God, for when your people’s minds and hearts were hardened, you never ceased to call to us. When fear and sorrow veiled your glory from our eyes, you continued to call in the voice of your faithful ones in every age, lifting the veil and making your presence known—even to us—in your spirit of freedom.

When the time was right, in mercy you spoke to us through your Son Jesus, whom you sent to be our Savior. He walked among us, struggled beside us, ate with us sinners, and called us to a life transformed by your power and grace. Upon the mountain as he prayed with his disciples nearby, he was transformed, and in dazzling light he spoke with your prophets of old concerning the death that he would die. From the cloud, again, you spoke to your people of faith, commending to us your Chosen One.

Send your Spirit upon us gathered here out of love for you and for each other, and upon these gifts of bread and wine. Make them to be for us the body of Christ, that we who are being fashioned into his body, cleansed by his blood, may with unveiled faces behold the image of your glory in all your children, be transformed into his likeness, and by your mercy follow in his ministry with our whole hearts and with your commending word.

Musical Response: Praise God from whom all blessings flow

Praise God from whom all blessings flow;, praise him all creatures here below; praise him above, ye heavenly host; praise Father Son and Holy Ghost

Words: Thomas Ken; Music Genevan Psalter1551;last line, Ravenscroft’s Psalter 1621; both public domain.

Reflection on giving: We have been giving faithfully since the beginning of the pandemic and we are committed to continuing the ministry and mission that define Dayspring – using the various ways described on the screen and in Dayspring Weekly News. Thank you all for your support of our shared vision and mission. For those in the sanctuary, if you have offering envelopes with you, simply put them in the offering plate at the back of the sanctuary as you leave the service today.

Transition Music: Be still and know that I am God

(Author: Anonymous. Music: Public Domain)

Commissioning of Stephen Minister Iris Routledge

Congregational Response: “Yes, with the help of God.”

Prayer for others and ourselves

Heavenly Father, we pray together for a world gone wrong, disturbed, and unsettled. Forgive us our part in that; invade us with your grace that through our love and care and sacrifice you might be more fully known in our community.

We pray for those who are ill, or worried about someone they love; (pause to reflect)

We pray for homes where relationships are under real pressure; (pause to reflect)

We pray for those facing decisions and new challenges; (pause to reflect)

We pray for those who have lost heart and hope. (pause to reflect)

Lord, in your mercy, hear our prayers and touch these situations with your grace and love, as we pray in Jesus’ name. Amen.

Hymn/Song: Give me oil in my lamp

Give me oil in my lamp; keep me burning; give me oil in my lamp, I pray. Give me oil in my lamp; keep me burning; keep me burning till the break of day.

 Refrain: Sing hosanna, sing hosanna, sing hosanna to the Servant King; sing hosanna, sing hosanna, sing hosanna, let us sing!

 Give me joy in my heart; keep me praising; give me joy in my heart, I pray. Give me joy in my heart; keep me praising; keep me praising till the break of day.     Refrain

 Give me peace in my heart; keep me loving; give me peace in my heart, I pray. Give me peace in my heart; keep me loving; keep me loving till the break of day.     Refrain

Give me love in my heart; keep me serving; give me love in my heart, I pray. Give me love in my heart; keep me serving; keep me serving till the break of day.     Refrain

Words: Anonymous © public domain; Music: Christian Strover © 1988 by Hope Publishing Co. Reprinted with permission under One License, License #A735555. All rights reserved, Permission to stream the music in this service obtained from ONE LICENSE

Sending out with God’s blessing

In the coming week, may you experience the presence of God with joy. May the holy cloud comfort you. May the divine voice encourage you. May the power of the Spirit transform you, transform us, transform our world. Amen. (Source: Joanna Harader)

Response: God to enfold you, Christ to uphold you, Spirit to keep you in heaven’s sight So may God grace you, heal and embrace you Lead you through darkness into the light

Words: J. Bell, G. Maule; © WGRG Iona Community, GIA Publications Inc. Reprinted with permission under ONE LICENSE, License #A735555​. All rights reserved. Permission to stream the music in this service obtained from ONE LICENSE

 Music postlude

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Numbers in brackets after a song/hymn indicate that it is from the 1997 Book of Praise of the Presbyterian Church in Canada. Those and other songs are being used in accordance with the specified licenses with One Licence and CLC.


Astrid Melatunan retains the copyright (© 2022) on all original material presented by her. As far as Astrid Melatunan is aware, all of the material presented that has not been attributed to others is her own creation or is in the public domain. Unacknowledged use of copyrighted material is unintentional and will be corrected immediately upon notification being received.

[1] Copyright © 1997 Katherine Hawker. Posted on her Liturgies Outside website.

[2] presbyterian.ca/worship/#occasional-prayers.

Posted in Recent Sermons.