Service for the week beginning January 17th
Come, see, hear – this week we explore how we help each other hear God
Today we hear about two friends who have an unexpected encounter with Jesus and initially react in very different ways. Together, Philip and Nathanael help each other to understand who Jesus is and they begin a journey that will redefine who they are.
Nathanael is surprised that Jesus knows not only his name, but much about him too. Jesus knows each of us as individuals but sometimes, like Nathanael, we can wonder ‘Why would God be interested in me?’ Some of us will be, like Philip, keen to follow straight away. Some of us will be more like Nathanael – full of questions and concerns. This story shows that wherever we are, Jesus finds us and knows us. Are we looking and listening out for him – and helping others to do so too?
Spend a few moments reflecting on times that you have encountered Jesus in a special way and known him speaking to you directly.
What circumstances or environment help you to see or hear God?
How might we help each other to look and listen for God?
You may like to listen to this piece of music as you do this.
Light candle and say the prayer
Jesus light of the world,
bless us in our worship now
Light up our hearts
and make us lights to the world Amen
Play and sing along with this Hymn All I once held dear
Let us pray
Come, let us worship the Lord who made us,
who knows our every thought before it is formed.
See the one from whom nothing is hidden – hear him speak.
Come, let us worship and listen.
We have come into the presence of our Lord.
So, let us quieten our hearts and minds,
put aside our concerns and distractions.
Let us open ourselves to listen for God’s voice,
for the word God has for His people.
Almighty God, you speak to us in so many ways.
Help us, in our worship today, to hear your voice and
know it is you.
Speak to us in the silence,
through Scripture and by your Spirit.
Speak through others and through your creation,
through images, experiences, music and encounters.
Speak in ways that we can understand.
So, speak, Lord – and help us to listen. Amen.
Listen to John 1.35-51
What is your response to being called by Jesus to go with him?
Where has he led you in the past?
Where do you think he is leading you now?
Take a few moments to reflect and listen to what Jesus is saying to you now.
Hear him say directly to you – Come with me.
As you reflect listen to and watch this video – Come and see
Thought for the week: Hearing the master’s voice
Do you remember the old HMV logo – a dog sitting in front of a wax-cylinder phonograph, and listening to the sound coming from the horn? It is based on a painting by Liverpool artist, Francis Barraud, titled ‘His Master’s Voice’. Which, of course, is where the company name HMV comes from.
The painting is in turn based on real events. Francis’ brother Mark died, but left recordings of his voice on a wax cylinder. Whenever Francis played them, Mark’s dog – Nipper – would run over to the machine and listen intently. He truly recognised his master’s voice.
Do we recognise our master’s voice, God’s voice?
Do we understand it?
Perhaps, we expect to receive some kind of personal message, like Samuel.
In reality, God uses many different ways of speaking – as this poem declares:
Not only in words
Why do you want me to speak?
Is not my presence sufficient for you?
The kiss of my love in the sunlight,
Or the scent of my being on a flower?
Why do you want me to speak,
When I hug you in the embrace of a friend?
When I move you by the fall of a song?
When I show you the scars on my hands?
Why do you ask me to speak,
When I use other voices not mine?
For mine is the cry of the stranger,
The hungry, the prisoner, the poor.
Why do you ask me to speak,
When I’ve spoken so often before?
Heed my world, read my Word
Seek my Son and then you will hear me.
K Gire, Windows of the Soul: Hearing God in the Everyday Moments of Your Life, Zondervan, 2017, ISBN 978-0310352273
Listen to and sing along with the hymn, Will you come and follow me to end this worship time with.
Lord, what we have learned this day – help us remember.
Teach us to recognise your voice.
Teach us how to see you in our lives and encounters.
Help us to give others space so that they may hear you too.
Below you will find a podcast which is a sermon on the passage above
Today in our podcast we are hearing of the call of the first disciples by Jesus to ‘come follow me’.
Shared by Stephen Manners.