LOVE WORSHIP

Alright as always this is rough. I wish I had time to do a whole lot of format, but I just don’t, so you will have to take what you can get. This is our February Friday Night Connection. Students will be leading all of these parts and then we will have the station time afterwards. If you have any questions let me know.

LOVE:

Outline:

Video: What does love sound like (Visual Reality Video)

Songs (any songs you choose, but something about love would be cool)

God So Loved

Reading

Bible Truth

Songs

Lectio Divinia

Song (the Hymn O How He Loves You and Me would be cool here)

Friend of a Wounded Heart (See if you can figure out the pantomime/skit from what I have here. The old Wayne Watson song of the same name is too long for the drama time so have someone ready to fade it out at the end.

Song (close with a song, maybe a recap of one of the earlier ones)

ELEMENTS:

Bible Truth

God loved the world so much he was willing to go to any means necessary to make it right. Even though we had turned out back on him time and time again. Even though we constantly treat his love with disrespect he still comes after us, still pursues us with his love.

God gave us a picture of that love in the book of Hosea.

Hosea 1:2 says:

    When the Lord began to speak through Hosea, the Lord said to him, “Go, take to yourself an adulterous wife and children of unfaithfulness, because the land is guilty of the vilest adultery in departing from the Lord.”

God tells Hosea to marry an adulterous woman who we later learn is a prostitute. God told Hosea to do this as a picture of God’s love for us. By telling Hosea to marry this woman he was saying that even though she had chased after everything wrong and was what their culture considered the worst of sinners Hosea was to love her. That is a picture of how God loves us. God shows his love for us no matter what we have done or how many times we have turned away from Him.

That is pretty remarkable, but here is the part that always amazes me.

This woman who Hosea married left him and ran off to go back to being a prostitute. She didn’t stay with Hosea she ran off back into her old life of sin. Even after Hosea showed her how much he loved her she still ran away back to a life of sin. That isn’t the amazing part, I know that I am always chasing after sin more than I am chasing after God. I know that there are many times that I turn my back on God even after everything He has done for me.

Here is the amazing part God tells Hosea to go and get her back.

Hosea 3:1-3 says:

    The Lord said to me, “Go, show your love to your wife again, though she is loved by another and is an adulteress. Love her as the Lord loves the Israelites, though they turn to other gods and love the sacred raisin cakes.”

    [2] So I bought her for fifteen shekels of silver and about [10 bushels] of barley. [3] Then I told her, “You are to live with me many days; you must not be a prostitute or be intimate with any man, and I will live with you.”

God tells Hosea to go and buy her back from the people that she willingly let herself be enslaved too. That is the love that God has for us. Even when we choose to run away from him, he still comes after us with his love, pursuing us and showing us how much he cares for us. And it is the blood of His son Jesus that is the payment to buy us back. 

That is God’s love. It isn’t dependent on our actions, it isn’t dependent on how good we are or how pretty we are or how funny we are. God’s love isn’t based on how many good deeds you have done or how popular you are. God chooses to love you and he hasn’t held anything back in his pursuit of you. He has pulled out all of the stops to show you how much he loves you.

He is pursuing you even now with his love. He gave his son to die for you to show you his love. Why don’t you stop running from him and turn and accept his gift of perfect love?

Lectio:

Take a moment and move to someplace where you are comfortable. You may want to stay right where you are, or you may want to move some place where you can be more alone. Find a place where you can relax.

Give them time to move

Tonight we are going to engage in a practice of the early church called “Sacred Reading.” I will read through a piece of text from the Bible several times stopping after each time to let you reflect on the words and their meaning for your life. As you listen to the words of God himself being read think of them as words that are being spoken directly from God to you. Open your mind up to the truth of these words and to the God who gave them to you.

Let’s begin by taking a few deep breaths. Breath in quietly through your nose and out again through your mouth. Pause and breathe a couple of times yourself.

Now as I begin to read the text this first time don’t worry too much about the meaning of the words. Let them come to you like art or a song. Search out phrases that speak to your heart and grab onto them and turn them over in your mind. Meditate on the poetry of God’s word to your heart.

Romans 5:6-8 (NIV) 

    You see, at just the right time, when we were still powerless, Christ died for the ungodly. [7] Very rarely will anyone die for a righteous man, though for a good man someone might possibly dare to die. [8] But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.

1 John 4:9-10 (NIV) 

    This is how God showed his love among us: He sent his one and only Son into the world that we might live through him. [10] This is love: not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins.

Alright there is a long pause here (I will have watch for you because it needs to be like 2 and a half minutes)

Now as I read the text again think about how you can apply these words to your life. Do these verses change the way you look at yourself—The way you look at a God? How do these verses make you feel on the inside? As you meditate pray and says thanks to God for His love. Explore your feelings about these verses with Him.

Romans 5:6-8 (NIV) 

    You see, at just the right time, when we were still powerless, Christ died for the ungodly. [7] Very rarely will anyone die for a righteous man, though for a good man someone might possibly dare to die. [8] But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.

1 John 4:9-10 (NIV) 

    This is how God showed his love among us: He sent his one and only Son into the world that we might live through him. [10] This is love: not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins.

Alright there is a long pause here (I will have watch for you because it needs to be like 2 and a half minutes)

As I read the verse for the final time think about what these verses mean to the people around you. Are there people that you know who need to hear this truth? Are there people you know whom you should be telling about God’s love? As you meditate on the words ask God to bring to your mind specific people and specific ways you can share these truths with them.

Read the verses again here

Alright there is a long pause here (I will have watch for you because it needs to be like 2 and a half minutes)

YOU NEED TO PRAY HERE! Let it be a prayer of your own.

For God So Loved

Reading

Alright I really like this reading. It would be better if memorized, but I know that is asking a whole lot of teenagers. It is done looking at the audience, but the two characters are obviously talking to each other too. The tone should be somewhat conversational. The multiple “wows” should be spoken as if you are amazed, almost in awe.

1. God loves

2. Fascinating isn’t it. That God
loves

1. this is the great ruler of the universe, the creator of all things, the king of kings and the lord of lord

2. and yet he loves me

1. (pause)  he loves me

2. but not only me God love everyone

1. For God so loved the world

2. The world? God loves the whole world?

1. For God so loved the world

2. Even the mean people God loves even the mean people

1. For God so loved the whole world

2. Wow!

1. (pause) but how do I know, how do I know that this God who throws his love around to everyone really knows me? How do I know that he loves me

2. For God so loved the world that he gave his only begotten son

1. He did what?

2. He gave his one and only son

1. For me? He gave his only son for me?

2. God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son

1. Amazing! He gave his one and only son for me (pause) and for you.

2. But why?

1. What?

2. Why? Why would he do it?

1. So that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.

2. Oh, you mean heaven

1. No, more than that—eternal life

2. (matter of factly) heaven

1. Now eternal life starting right now

2. Really?

1. He came so that we could have life and have it more abundantly—an abundant life now!

2. Abundant life? And eternal life?

1. Yep

2. Wow!

1. For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. (NIV)

2. God loved the world this way: He gave his only Son so that everyone who believes in him will not die but will have eternal life. (GW)

1. This is how much God loved the world: He gave his Son, his one and only son. (pause) And this is why: so that no one need be destroyed; by believing in him, anyone can have a whole and lasting life. (THE MESSAGE)

2. For God so loves—you.

FRIEND OF A WOUNDED HEART

Characters: Girl, Jesus, Friend, Teacher, Boyfriend, Mother

Set-Up: Four Speaking parts in a semicircle around the girl. Jesus starts off stage. The girl has a heart with a little tear in it taped to her shirt. When Jesus comes up he has a complete heart. He will also need new hearts for all of the people who are on the stage (4 more)

The skit opens with Girl looking at the torn place in her heart and going to the Friend. She taps the friend on the shoulder and when the friend turns around she gestures toward her heart.

Friend: Oh it’s you. Let me guess you’ve got some sort of problem again. I know you have it rough, but I’ve got problems of my own. So listen, I don’t really know how to say this, but I think it would be best if we didn’t hang out together anymore. I know that sounds harsh, but you are really bringing me down and I’ve found some new friends now so why don’t you find some other whinny people to hang out with. Friend tears a piece of Girl’s heart, throws it on the floor and then turns back around.

Girl stands there looking hurt for a moment and then heads to Teacher taps him on the shoulder and motions to her heart.

Teacher: Listen, I’m sorry that you are having a tough time, but I don’t really know what I can do about it. There are 30 other people in my class that are seeming to be getting it, why should I give you special treatment? Frankly I don’t know if you are really cut out to handle a class like mine. You may need to reconsider what you have planned for your life, I’m not sure if you have what it takes to really make it. I don’t really know what you want me to do. You are failing my class and I can’t help you. Teacher tears a piece of Girl’s heart, throws it on the floor and then turns back around.

Girl stands there looking hurt for a moment and then heads to Boyfriend taps him on the shoulder and motions to her heart which is now looking pretty rough.

Boyfr
iend: Turns around excited until he sees who it is that has tapped his shoulder Oh it’s just you. Takes a deep breath I don’t want to be a jerk about this, but we really need to talk. You’ve just been bringing me down lately. There isn’t any of that excitement we used to have, and now that we found out that you’re not pregnant I just don’t see any reason to keep faking it. I know you say that you love me, but I am pretty sure that I don’t love you, and I don’t think I ever really did so lets just stop wasting our time. You and I we’re finished. Boyfriend tears a piece of Girls heart, throws it on the floor and turns around.

Girls is starting to look like she is about to cry. She stand for a moment contemplating the hurts of her heart and then goes to Mother.

Mother: Rolls her eyes when she sees Girl What do you want now? You are always in here with some sort of heartache or another some sort of trivial problem. Why don’t you go off and find some friends and quit whining to me. You think you’ve got problems? I’ve got real problems like having to put up with a whiny kid like you 24/7. You drive me crazy with all of your crying and complaining. You know sometimes I wish you were never even born. Mother then rips a large piece of Girl’s heart, throws it on the floor and turns around.

Girl is now thoroughly dejected. She stands there looking at her mom’s back for a moment then she slowly looks at each of the other people and finally collapses to her knees crying center stage.

Then the music starts

Jesus enters and approaches Girl. Girl looks up and is almost afraid to show him what is wrong, but she eventually shows him her ripped up heart. Jesus stands her up and gives her a big hug. Then he steps back and starts walking around picking up the pieces of her broken heart. He comes back to her and holds the out in one hand to her. She reaches for him, but he shakes his head and points to what is left of her heart. Girl is reluctant to part with what little bit of heart she has left, but she eventually agrees. Jesus then kneels down and begins to tape her heart back together.

Once the heart is taped back together he gives the heart back to her. She is excited, but she looks at the fact that it is just a taped up heart and it still doesn’t look all the way healed. When she looks back at Jesus, he holds his hands out for her heart. Again she is reluctant, but not as much as before. Jesus then takes his own complete heart off and gives it to her in exchange for her broken heart.

The two of them then turn to face the other people on stage. Jesus hands Girl a handful of hearts and she begins to pass them around to the other people. The Mom resists taking it, but eventually does.

Then Jesus goes and stands like he is on a cross and the girl kneels and places her heart at his feet all of the others do the same

The music fades out. 

STATION IDEAS:

I know I normally have more than this for stations, I just don’t have them written yet so you can check back next week and see if I put up the finished instructions.

Without using a heart as a symbol draw a picture of love.

Take a heart from the stack and think of the times when you have been hurt. What pains are you still holding onto and not letting go? For each of those hurts tear a piece of your heart. Now place those pieces in the box and get a new heart. That new heart is the heart that God wants to give you. Real life hurt can’t be healed in one night, but all healing comes from God. It is God’s love for you that restores you and creates in you a new heart.

It is the cross where God proved his love for us. Make a wooden cross covered with words like unlovable ugly, worthless, useless, outcast. Then have them place their hands on words that they feel are true about their lives. As they place their hands there on the cross remember what the cross says about your life. (then on the back of the cross have the things that you are now valued loved, etc.) and then move around to the other side of the cross and spend some time praying that God would show you the truth of who he is, that you are loved and he proved his love on the cross.

Love isn’t just a feeling it is action. Love is a verb. So I will have a list of love actions on their sheet. They will pray about that list and then take two cards and write what they are going to do on that card. One they will place on the board so that others can see and one they will take with them to remind them.

Create an original work of art that expresses your love to God. Remember that love is more than just a feeling it is actions too.

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.