August 9, 2020 - Sunday Service Worship Guide
Good morning Mercy Hill and happy Sunday to you! If you're new with us, we just wanted to extend a special welcome to you. Feel free to fill out a Connection Card to get more info or prayer. We're glad to have you with us!
If you're tuning in for the Watch Party, you'll notice that the platform has tabs where you can find today's Worship Guide, read an online Bible, and even chat. While we're meeting virtually like this, we'd encourage everyone to please consider taking a moment to put a comment in the chat box there. Let us know who you are and maybe where you're tuning in from. Say hi. We miss you! And as we get into the message, feel free to share other Scriptures that come to mind, prayer requests that you have, questions that you'd like answered, etc. It would be great to interact even in this limited format.
Here are a few critical announcements to keep in mind:
- Supporting City Bible Church in Beirut: As some of you may have seen on the news, a blast of highly explosive material recently killed dozens and injured thousands in Beirut, Lebanon. This explosion has also caused significant damage to City Bible Church, a church in the Acts 29 network which Mercy Hill is also a part of. Pastor Nick is currently in touch with the pastor of City Bible Church, Pastor Marwan, and we will provide any updates in the coming days with specific needs for the church and city. Please pray for their church, the people affected in Beirut. You can read more here. And if you feel led to give, you can donate to the Acts 29 Beirut Relief Fund.
- Mercy Hill Youth Hangout: All Mercy Hill Youth are invited for an online hangout after service today! Come spend an hour catching up in fellowship, prayer, and sharing. We look forward to seeing you there! We will be meeting using Zoom's video conferencing platform - you can find the details for joining the meeting here.
- Foster The Bay Interest Meetings: Our church is a partner with Foster The Bay, an organization that inspires local churches to develop a sustainable, effective foster care ministry. They're hosting virtual interest meetings during this season and we'd encourage anyone to attend and find out about unique ways to care for a child in the foster care system. Interest meetings provide a low-pressure, no commitment opportunity for you to learn more. To sign up for a virtual interest meeting, click the link here. Once you fill out the form, you will receive an email with the Zoom meeting link for the date you choose.
- Sunday Service Afterparty: Remember to join us immediately following the Watch Party via Zoom for the Afterparty (which today will include a time of celebrating communion, singing, and prayer). You can find a link to join in here.
- Mercy Hill Kids Online Worship: Beginning at 11:30am today! Go here to read more and to find a link to sign in!
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- Home Groups: Many of our Home Groups are moving to a hybrid (in-person + virtual) format. Whatever your comfort level with meeting, you're welcome to come check one out. Find one to join here. You are not alone!
- COVID-19 SOS Form: If you or anyone you know needs help during this challenging time, we'd love to do what we can!
Title: “Neither Will I Tell You”: Learning to Honestly and Openly Seek the Lord
Text: Luke 20:1-8
Preacher: Nick Weber
Manuscript: If you appreciate following along with written material, you can find today's manuscript here.
- Just like Jesus is fighting to keep the gospel central here in the temple, so we too must fight to keep the gospel central in our own hearts and lives. So where is the gospel right now for you? Is it at the center or somewhere in the margins? Are you rooted in it or drifting from it? Do you have any tables or chairs that need flipping over this morning? Is there anything in your heart or life that you’ve got to drive out because it’s distracting you from the gospel, taking center stage, getting more airtime? Why do you think it's the gospel that, above all else, is worth fighting for like this? What would change for you if you heard and believed the gospel afresh today?
- Why do you think it's often the big names, the premier people, those with lofty stature that come most strongly against Jesus? Why is it usually those who occupy first place among men that are often the last to receive God? How have you seen this play out in people you know? How can you guard against this in your own life?
- In our text, we see that, though these Jewish leaders are proud and prominent, they are also anxious and afraid. How has your peace been lately? Said another way: how have you been doing with worry and anxiety? What have you been so worked up about? Where has Jesus been in it all? Fear and anxiety can often indicate a misplaced identity. When we build our lives upon something other than Jesus we lay our soul open to innumerable threats. "What if we lose it?" "What if things change?" Etc. Only Jesus is a sure foundation. Where have you been building your identity lately? In what have you been trying to find your satisfaction and joy? How would coming back to Christ with this restore you to peace?
- God often travels down unexpected avenues. He takes the roads less travelled, the routes we wouldn't expect Him to take. Are you open to God changing your ideas and plans or have you boxed Him into one line of action? Is everything in your life on the table and His to rearrange and do with as He sees best, or are there things you are holding onto and unwilling to let go of? As John Stott says: “If Christ is our Lord, we must open our minds to the possibility of change” (Basic Christianity, 143). So are you open? Why or why not?
- Would you say you are genuinely and honestly seeking Christ? Why or why not? In our text we see that Jesus stops talking when we stop truly listening and seeking. He won't play our games. But, on the other hand, as Psalm 145 says: “The Lord is near to all who call on him, to all who call on him in truth.” What would it look like for you to call on Him "in truth" right now?
- Do you have people in your life with whom you've been trying to share the gospel but you've hit a wall, you've run into the limits of what words and arguments and evidence can do? Perhaps they like to argue about religion but you can tell they are not ever truly going to be convinced by honest conversation and reasoning. So what do you do? How have you handled this in the past? After hearing this sermon, how might you approach this going forward?
Call to Response
If you need prayer in any way, please either: (1) request it during the Watch Party via the "Request Prayer" button; (2) fill out a Connection Card; or (3) post your request to our Mercy Hill Community Facebook Group. We’d love to be lifting you up and caring for you in this time!
If you’d like to give an offering this morning, please check out our Give page to find the best option for you!
Mercy Hill Kids
While difficult, this pandemic does create a wonderful chance for parents to step towards their God-given call as chief disciplers of their kids. We know this may feel overwhelming and that is why we want to help! Parents of Mercy Hill children should have already received an email from the Director of Mercy Hill Kids, Christina Lugo, regarding ways you can utilize the Gospel Project curriculum at home. This information has also been included on our blog here. Beyond this, each Sunday, we are also looking to host an online worship gathering for our kids. You can check here for more details. We'd love to have you join us!
If you have any questions or need help in any way, don't hesitate to reach out to Christina at
Have a Wonderful Week!