Sunday, May 31, 2020

Worshiping at Home June 7, 2020

Worshiping at Home
June 7, 2020


When a family that includes children worships at home, it will look more free form than what happens in a sanctuary.  Especially HEARING THE WORD will be more active.  Children explore God’s word with eyes, voices, hands and even feet as well as their ears. 

This week   we will worship God who created the whole universe.  It would be a great day to worship outside if that is possible.

If you can worship outside today, spread a picnic blanket on the ground or a table.  If you are inside, spread a piece of earth colored fabric on the floor or a table.  Ask each member of the family to bring something God created from outside to pace on your worship center.  Add a Bible or the Bible storybook, and a candle.

Prepare for an illustrated reading of the seven day creation story.  Make a table knife banner for each day by taping an index card or paper illustration for that day to the blade of a table knife (no sharp knives!) or spoon.  This may be a job for the whole family working together or for one or two crafty folks working ahead as their gift to the household’s worship.
Day One:  color one half or one side of the paper a dark color and the other light blue for day and night.
Day Two:  color the paper light blue and maybe add a rainbow for sky.
Day Three:  draw a picture of the earth with brown land and blue seas on one knife and tape leaves from the yard or drawn on a card to another knife.
Day Four: if you have lots of stickers add a sun, moon and stars to the paper.  Or, draw sun, moon and stars on the card for this day.
Day Five:  draw water creature/s and bird/s on one side of the card.  Or, make separate knife banners for water creatures and birds. (Read Genesis 1:20-23 for ideas)
Day Six:  draw land creatures and people on one card or on two separate cards. (See Genesis 1:24-27 for ideas.)
Day Seven:  write “Aah” on a card for “God rested.” Or, draw another resting picture.

It is possible to worship together without singing at all.  But if your family sings together, decide before worship what you will sing.  Sing whatever songs about God’s world that your family knows.  If you have instrumentalists, decide early enough that they can practice.  Or, Google the titles of songs to find YouTube videos for singing along.  Some songs about God’s creation include:
All Things Bright and Beautiful
Earth and All Stars
– the word sheet at the end of this post highlights repeated choruses
All Creatures of Our God and King – Alleluias (next week) /
For the Beauty of the Earth
I Sing the Mighty Power of God
- see illustrated song sheet at end of post for older children


Worship leader gathers the family lighting or turning on the candle and saying:   “Come, let us worship God together.”

Sing one or more songs of songs about God’s creation that you selected as you got ready to worship.

A parent reminds the family that when we sing and think about how loving and powerful God is, we are aware of all the ways we mess up.  Today especially we think of ways we have misused the world God created.  Each one of us have things we need tell God we are sorry about, maybe from the last week, maybe from a long time ago.  Allow a full minute of silence for everyone to close their eyes and talk to God about the ways they have messed up.  The same parent then says, “Look at me.  God promises us that whenever we mess up and are truly sorry, God forgives us.  God always loves us no matter what.  Because God loves us no matter what, we can love each other no matter what.  So…”  Pass the peace as you do in the sanctuary if you are all healthy.

Distribute the knife banners among worshipers.  A fairly advanced reader reads Genesis 1:1-2:4.  As the reader comes to each day one person waves that knife banner then lays it in order on the worship center.  (You may want to read the story twice for everyone to enjoy the banner waving.)

Sing “All Things Bright and Beautiful” or “I Sing the Mighty Power of God” waving the knife banners as they are mentioned in the song.

Invite the whole household to echo the worship leader after he/she reads each line of Psalm 8 with interspersed comments, song snippets, and hand motions.  The worship leader will need to practice this to read and do motions smoothly.  Ask a second worship leader to hold the paper so the reader can make motions with both hands.

Psalm 8 Echo Reading

Lord, our Lord,
your greatness is seen in all the world!

“This is my father’s world” (sing this )

Your praise reaches up to the heavens;

Praise the Lord!  (LOUD)

It is sung by children and babies.

Praise the Lord! (LOUDER)

You are safe and secure from all your enemies;

You stop anyone who opposes you.

When I look at the sky (sweep the sky with arm),

which you (look up) have made,

at the moon (form circle around your head with arms) 

and the stars (sprinkle the sky with stars with your fingers)

which you set in their places-

What are human beings, that you think of them; (make a questioning gesture)

What are men that you think of them? (point to boys)

What are women that you think of them? (point to girls)

mere mortals, that you care for them? (hands out to include all)

Yet you made them inferior only to yourself;

You crowned them (make yourself a crown with your hands) with glory and honor.

You appointed them rulers over everything you made;

In charge of everything you made

Responsible for everything you made,

You placed them over all creation:

sheep and cattle,

and the wild animals too;

the birds and the fish and the creatures in the seas.

Air we breathe and pollute (take a deep breath)

Food for many or a few (lick your lips with satisfaction)

Energy to keep us warm and moving (hug self to keep warm)

Lord, our Lord, (throw hands up toward the sky)
your greatness is seen in all the world!


                                     Based on the TEV translation

Challenge each worshiper to draw a large blue circle as close to filling a page as possible. Then to fill it with words or pictures of what you want to say to God about the world, e.g. draw a whale or write WHALE for a prayer for whales that are almost extinct.  Prayers might  ask God for help, praise God for the cool things about creation, etc.  When all are ready each one in turn brings his/her prayer sheet to the worship center and tells their prayers aloud.  As each one finishes all say, “Amen.”

SING ANOTHER SONG if you wish. 

Each member of the family says to at least one other person, “Go in peace.  God loves you and I love you.”  This may be done by going around the circle or with each member of the family saying it to every other member of the family.

Older children enjoy all the modern science equipment in this song. 
Before singing it point out the repeated orange phrase and repeated red chorus.  

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