[So many coins were collected for our special Noisy Bucket Sunday during our 9 am chapel service that some of them spilled all over the floor. Don't worry, a couple of kind people stayed after worship to pick them up. Our coins will be supporting the Athens County Food Pantry which has an urgent plea for additional funds to finish the year. Click here for the sermon.]
O God, thank you for your word to us this morning from Philippians to live a life worthy of the gospel. Help us to live with purpose, to serve others, and to live with integrity. Help us to rejoice always, whether or not our favorite college football team wins or not.
O God, as our furnaces have emerged from a long hibernation, we think of those who will be cold this winter. Thank you that we can live a life worthy of the gospel by donating winter clothing to help people in need. Thank you that we can live a life worthy of the gospel through our Athens First Saturday outreach this upcoming Saturday morning. Thank you that we can live a life worthy of the gospel by serving meals at Monday Lunch here at our church. Thank you that we can live a life worthy of the gospel by making blankets for those who are cold. Thank you for all of these ways that we can provide warmth to the people in our community.
O God, we rejoice in you always because you are bigger than any problem that may come our way. We rejoice in you always because of how you guide us in making difficult decisions. We rejoice in you always because you offer your healing love in times of sadness and pain. We rejoice in you always because you love us unconditionally. We rejoice in you always because your love includes everyone regardless of our age, race, economic status, gender, political party, sexual orientation, or nationality.
O God, for those who find it difficult to rejoice today because of loneliness, grief, or pain, may they know of your life-giving Spirit. May the college students who walk by our church on a daily basis know of your life-giving Spirit. May our community leaders, our schools, and our local officials know of your life-giving Spirit. May our local outreach organizations like Habitat for Humanity, Hospice, and Good Works Outreach know of your life-giving Spirit.