Call to Worship, Opening Prayer: Lent 5A

Here’s a call to worship and opening prayer inspired by the suggested scripture readings for Lent 5A, including Ezekiel 37:1-14 (Ezekiel and the valley of dry bones) and John 11:1-45 (Jesus raises Lazarus from the dead). It was written by Rev. Elizabeth Dilley.

Call to Worship
(inspired by Ezekiel 37: 1-14, John 11: 1-45)

The prophet asks: Can our soul-weary bones live again?
O God, you know!

We ask: Can we dance again after mourning, loss and grief?
O God, you know!

The gift is sure and unmistakable:
God’s breath poured out as new life for weary souls!

Let us celebrate the gift of God’s new life,
And come to worship God in laughter and dancing!

Opening Prayer
(inspired by Ezekiel 37: 1-14, John 11: 1-45)

Compassionate God,
the wind of your Spirit is the very sign of life
for all who long for you.
One breath from you and we are rescued
from the arid valley of dry bones,
given muscles and sinews and joy with which to praise you,
and filled with the holy hope you grant to all your faithful children.
Let our whole lives be filled with the life-breath of the Spirit,
that what has lain dormant may burst into bloom,
and what looks to us to be death
may be revealed as but sleep
before the emergence of new life. Amen.

~ from Come Out! On the Breath of God, Service Prayers for the fifth Sunday of Lent, written by the Rev. Elizabeth Dilley.  Posted on the United Church of Christ’s Worship Ways website.