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  • Pastor Jill

Worship- August 9, 2020 Put Your Hand in the Hand

Tenth Sunday after Pentecost August 9, 2020

Introduction to the Day:

The disciples in their small boat are being thrashed around by a storm, and, seeing Jesus, they cry out, thinking he is a ghost. Peter calls to him and ventures onto the water, but fear gets the best of him and he plunges into the waves. When the storms of life seek to engulf us, we can be sure that Jesus will be there to stretch out his hand and pull us up. God who is in charge and he calms the wind and waves

Prayer of the Day

Almighty God, in the midst of the storms of life, Christ’s presence brings eternal peace & calms our fears. Grant us peace through scripture, & through the bread & wine of Holy Communion. Then send us forth to be signs of Christ’s peace in the world; through your Son, Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives & reigns with you & the Holy Spirit, one God, now & forever. Amen

First Reading: Job 38:4-18

“Where were you when I laid the foundation of the earth? Tell me, if you have understanding. Who determined its measurements — surely you know! Or who stretched the line upon it? On what were its bases sunk, or who laid its cornerstone, when the morning stars sang together and all the sons of God shouted for joy? Or who shut in the sea with doors when it burst out from the womb, when I made clouds its garment and thick darkness its swaddling band, and prescribed limits for it and set bars and doors, and said, ‘Thus far shall you come, and no farther, and here shall your proud waves be stayed’? Have you commanded the morning since your days began, and caused the dawn to know its place, that it might take hold of the skirts of the earth, and the wicked be shaken out of it? It is changed like clay under the seal, and its features stand out like a garment. From the wicked their light is withheld, and their uplifted arm is broken. Have you entered into the springs of the sea, or walked in the recesses of the deep? Have the gates of death been revealed to you, or have you seen the gates of deep darkness? Have you comprehended the expanse of the earth? Declare, if you know all this.”

Psalm 18:1-6

I love you, O Lord my strength,*

O Lord my stronghold, my crag, and my haven.

My God, my rock in whom I put my trust,*

my shield, the horn of my salvation, and my refuge: You are worthy of praise.

I will call up on the Lord,*

and so shall I be saved from my enemies.

The breakers of death rolled over me,*

and the torrents of oblivion made me afraid.

The cords of hell entangled me,*

and the snares of death were set for me.

I called upon the Lord in my distress*

and cried out to my God for help.

He heard my voice from his heavenly dwelling;*

my cry of anguish came to his ears.

The earth reeled and rocked;*

the roots of the mountains shook; they reeled because of his anger.

Smoke rose from his nostrils and a consuming fire out of his mouth;*

hot burning coals blazed forth from him.

He parted the heavens and came down*

with a storm cloud under his feet.

He mounted on cherubim and flew;*

he swooped on the wings of the wind.

He wrapped darkness about him;*

he made dark waters and thick clouds his pavilion.

From the brightness of his presence, through the clouds,*

burst hailstones and coals of fire.

The Lord thundered out of heaven;*

the Most High uttered his voice.

He loosed his arrows and scattered them;*

he hurled thunderbolts and routed them.

The beds of the seas were uncovered, and the foundations of the world laid bare,*

at your battle cry, O Lord, at the blast of the breath of your nostrils.

He reached down from on high and grasped me;*

he drew me out of great waters.]

Second Reading: Romans 10:5-17

Moses writes about the righteousness that is based on the law, that the person who does the commandments shall live by them. But the righteousness based on faith says, “Do not say in your heart, ‘Who will ascend into heaven?’” (that is, to bring Christ down) “or ‘Who will descend into the abyss?’” (that is, to bring Christ up from the dead). But what does it say? “The word is near you, in your mouth and in your heart” (that is, the word of faith that we proclaim); because, if you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. For with the heart one believes and is justified, and with the mouth one confesses and is saved. For the Scripture says, “Everyone who believes in him will not be put to shame.” For there is no distinction between Jew and Greek; for the same Lord is Lord of all, bestowing his riches on all who call on him. For “everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.” How then will they call on him in whom they have not believed? And how are they to believe in him of whom they have never heard? And how are they to hear without someone preaching? And how are they to preach unless they are sent? As it is written, “How beautiful are the feet of those who preach the good news!” But they have not all obeyed the gospel. For Isaiah says, “Lord, who has believed what he has heard from us?” So faith comes from hearing, and hearing through the word of Christ.

Gospel: Matthew 14:22-33

Immediately {Jesus} made the disciples get into the boat and go before him to the other side, while he dismissed the crowds. And after he had dismissed the crowds, he went up on the mountain by himself to pray. When evening came, he was there alone, but the boat by this time was a long way from the land, beaten by the waves, for the wind was against them. And in the fourth watch of the night he came to them, walking on the sea. But when the disciples saw him walking on the sea, they were terrified, and said, “It is a ghost!” and they cried out in fear. But immediately Jesus spoke to them, saying, “Take heart; it is I. Do not be afraid.” And Peter answered him, “Lord, if it is you, command me to come to you on the water.” He said, “Come.” So Peter got out of the boat and walked on the water and came to Jesus. But when he saw the wind, he was afraid, and beginning to sink he cried out, “Lord, save me.” Jesus immediately reached out his hand and took hold of him, saying to him, “O you of little faith, why did you doubt?” And when they got into the boat, the wind ceased. And those in the boat worshiped him, saying, “Truly you are the Son of God.”

Sermon Take the Hand of the Man from Galilee - Pastor Jill

The verse that stood out to me the most is Jesus immediately reached out his hand and took hold of him. I thought of the old gospel song—Reach out and touch the Lord as he passing by—you’ll find he’s not too busy—to hear your heart’s cry. He’s passing by this moment—your needs to supply—Reach out & touch the Lord as He passes by.

Here Jesus sees the need –Peter had so much faith at first—but fear got the best of him when he saw the wind—and he took his eyes off Jesus and became afraid. Jesus says “O you of little faith, why did you doubt?” Nevertheless, Jesus reached out to him, took His hand, and got him into the boat. Then the wind ceased. Was it a test of Peter’s faith? Perhaps.

We see Peter’s personality traits here—impulsive, outspoken, excitable, headstrong, “all-or nothing”---yet I would say he had a lot of faith—to walk on the water as Jesus just demonstrated—but when the wind of adversity struck him—fear took over, and he began to sink. Was this a bad personality trait? I would say, NO! Peter failed many tests, but he grew from them—when later Jesus said, "You are Peter, and on this rock I will build my Church, and the gates of Hades will not prevail against it."

Today’s message for us is about taking the hand of the man who stilled the water—the storms of life. Do we have to wait until the storm comes to take his hand? Absolutely NOT. He extends us his hand—powerful, caring, protecting, strong—now.

I was reminded of the first covenant of marriage. When I officiate at a wedding I often bring along a rope—3 stranded (as a 2 stranded rope will not hold together)—signifying the covenant union between the man, the woman and Father God. God instituted marriage based on the Covenant relationship—a binding promise made to each other which is not to be broken. God certainly won’t break it.

I love it when the bride’s father walks her up the aisle—so proud, yet perhaps feeling, “I am releasing one of the most precious treasures in my life—my daughter—to this man.” It can be heart-wrenching. It was for my husband when he gave the hand of his daughters to our sons-in-law, Mike and Roger. They are excellent husbands to our treasures, and couldn’t be in better hands! They have kept the Covenant of Marriage as highly sacred. God is in their 3 stranded rope. Eccle. 4 reminds us: And if someone overpowers one person, two can resist him. A cord of three strands is not easily broken. Taking the hand of the one who stills the waters…..

One of the most precious times in our lives is when our son-in-law Mike wanted to marry our oldest daughter, Angela. They had courted a long time and he was finally ready. He did not take marriage lightly—it was a most serious commitment to him & Mike likes to do things right, be very very sure, & do it the honorable way.

One day Mike came to Jerry’s office— and said, “I would like to ask you something.” Jerry said, “Come, have a seat!” Nope, Mike was not about to sit down & have chit chat. He had serious business on his mind!

Mike went over to Jerry, knelt down on one knee, looked Jerry right in the eyes, and said, “Jerry, I would like to ask for your daughter’s hand in marriage—with your permission & blessing.” Jerry was stunned—and I believe big tears formed in his eyes. It was not a hard decision to make—Jerry thought the world of Mike and couldn’t think of anyone more well suited to his daughter Angela. They had dated for 5 years—and did not go into this without thinking it through.

Jerry took Mike’s hand and said, “I would be honored for you to marry Angela!”

Then at the wedding, the Priest (Mike is Catholic & they were married in the Catholic church) asked Jerry the same thing, after he escorted our daughter to the altar, then was told to wait. The Priest asked, “Who gives this woman’s hand in marriage?” To which Jerry replied, “Her mother & I.” Then Jerry handed Angela’s hand over to Mike’s hand, tears flowing now…and hugged them both. It was a most serene moment. We will never forget it.

Do you see the importance of “giving of the hand?”

Just as Jesus extended His hand to Peter—giving him life abundantly, stilling the storm, removing the fear, extending the faith, giving of himself completely—so we see Jesus giving us many examples of the solemnity & serious commitment of marriage.

In the marriage ceremony, the couple is instructed to join hands and promise faithfulness to each other. Here are the exact words each speak to the other:

I take you, ____________, to be my wife/husband from this day forward, to join with you & share all that is to come, & I promise to be faithful to you until death parts us. I give you this ring as a sign of my love & faithfulness.

As the bride & groom join hands again after putting the rings on each other’s fingers, the minister announces their marriage:

______ & _______, by their promises before God & in the presence of this congregation, have bound themselves to one another as husband & wife. Blessed be the Father & the Son & the Holy Spirit now & FOREVER. Those whom God has joined together let no one put asunder.

Then the bride & groom are asked to kneel at the altar—now they are establishing their covenant promises to God.

Minister now says, “The Lord God, who created our first parents & established them in marriage, establish & sustain you, that you may find delight in each other & grow in holy love until your life’s end. May you dwell in God’s presence forever; may true & constant love preserve you. God’s Covenant Promise—His hand is now extended to this new union. So, if you are with your spouse today, take their hand, & experience again, the love & faithfulness of the Covenant Relationship—between man, woman & God. To God be the glory.

ut Your Hand In The Hand


Put your hand in the hand of the man

Who stilled the water

Put your hand in the hand of the man

Who calmed the sea

Take a look at yourself

And you can look at others diff'rently

Put your hand in the hand of the man from Galilee

Verse 1

Every time I look into the Holy Book I wanna tremble

When I read about the part

Where a carpenter cleared the temple

See those buyers and the sellers

Were no diff'rent fellas

Than what you and I profess to be

And it causes me shame to know that man

Is not what he should be

Verse 2

Hey my mama taught me how to pray

Before I reached the age of seven

When I'm down on my knees hey I'm close to heaven

My daddy lived his life with two kids and a wife

And you've got to do what you've got to do

But he showed me enough of what it takes

To see you through


This is what he used to tell me

CCLI Song # 3006924

Christopher Norton | Richard Lacy

© 1999 Whole World Publishing (Admin. by Capitol CMG Publishing)

For use solely with the SongSelect®. Terms of Use. All rights reserved.

CCLI License # 11430998

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