Words of Encouragement

Beginning September 15 – 7:00pm

Meeting ID: 859 7402 5438
Passcode: 001245

Class 1: In Times of Fear and Anxiety

Scripture Verses

At times, we all need encouragement, but even more we need to be able to encourage those around us. This class will look at encouraging words from the Bible that will warm your heart, but also equip you to share these words with others when they are downhearted. This will start as an online class via Zoom and later transition to a hybrid class.

Deuteronomy 3:22 – “Do not fear them, for it is the Lord your God who fights for you.”

Psalm 27:1 – “The Lord is my light and my salvation; whom shall I fear? The Lord is the stronghold of my life; of whom shall I be afraid?”

Psalm 34:4 – “I sought the Lord, and he answered me, and delivered me from all my fears.”

Psalm 56:3-4 – “When I am afraid, I put my trust in you. In God, whose word I praise, in God I trust; I am not afraid; what can flesh do to me?”

Isaiah 12:2 –  “Surely God is my salvation; I will trust, and will not be afraid, for the Lord God is my strength and my might; he has become my salvation.”

Isaiah 43:1 –  “But now thus says the Lord, he who created you, O Jacob, he who formed you, O Israel: Do not fear, for I have redeemed you; I have called you by name, you are mine.”

Matthew 6:33-34 – “But strive first for the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well. So do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will bring worries of its own. Today’s trouble is enough for today.”

Luke 12:22-28, 31-32 –  “Jesus said to his disciples, “Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat, or about your body, what you will wear. For life is more than food, and the body more than clothing. Consider the ravens: they neither sow nor reap, they have neither storehouse nor barn, and yet God feeds them. Of how much more value are you than the birds! And can any of you by worrying add a single hour to your span of life? If then you are not able to do so small a thing as that, why do you worry about the rest? Consider the lilies, how they grow: they neither toil nor spin; yet I tell you, even Solomon in all his glory was not clothed like one of these. But if God so clothes the grass of the field, which is alive today and tomorrow is thrown into the oven, how much more will he clothe you—you of little faith! Instead, strive for his kingdom, and these things will be given to you as well. Do not be afraid, little flock, for it is your Father’s good pleasure to give you the kingdom. Do not be afraid, little flock, for it is your Father’s good pleasure to give you the kingdom.””

John 14:27 –  “Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled, and do not let them be afraid.”

John 16:33 –  “I have said this to you, so that in me you may have peace. In the world you face persecution. But take courage; I have conquered the world!”

Philippians 4:6-7 –  “Do not worry about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.”

2 Timothy 1:7 –  “For God did not give us a spirit of cowardice, but rather a spirit of power and of love and of self-discipline.”

*Verses in bold will be covered in class.

Suggested Liturgies:
An Order for Compline – BCP 127

Prayers

For Sleep

O heavenly Father, you give your children sleep for the refreshing of soul and body: Grant me this gift, I pray; keep me in that perfect peace which you have promised to those whose minds are fixed on you; and give me such a sense of your presence, that in the hours of silence I may enjoy the blessed assurance of your love; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen. (BCP 461)

For Young Persons

God our Father, you see your children growing up in an unsteady and confusing world: Show them that your ways give more life than the ways of the world, and that following you is better than chasing after selfish goals. Help them to take failure, not as a measure of their worth, but as a chance for a new start. Give them strength to hold their faith in you, and to keep alive their joy in your creation; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen. (BCP 829)

A Collect for Aid against Perils

Be our light in the darkness, O Lord, and in your great mercy defend us from all perils and dangers of this night; for the love of your only Son, our Savior Jesus Christ. Amen. (BCP 123)

In the Evening

Keep watch, dear Lord, with those who work, or watch, or weep this night, and give your angels charge over those who sleep. Tend the sick, Lord Christ; give rest to the weary, bless the dying, soothe the suffering, pity the afflicted, shield the joyous; and all for your love’s sake. Amen.
(BCP 124)

In Times of Personal Distress

Lord Christ, you came into the world as one of us, and suffered as we do. As we go through the trials of life, help us to realize that you are with us at all times and in all things; that we have no secrets from you; and that your loving grace enfolds us for eternity. In the security of your embrace we pray. Amen. (EOW2 69)

For Protection

Christ, light of light, brightness indescribable, the Wisdom, power and glory of God, the Word made flesh: you overcame the forces of Satan, redeemed the world, then ascended again to the Father. Grant me, I pray, in this tarnished world, the shining of your splendor. Send your Archangel Michael to defend me, to guard my going out and coming in, and to bring me safely to your presence, where you reign in the one holy and undivided Trinity, to ages of ages. Amen. (EOW2 72-73)

For Serenity

Merciful Jesus, you are my guide, the joy of my heart, the author of my hope, and the object of my love. I come seeking refreshment and peace. Show me your mercy, relieve my fears and anxieties, and grant me a quiet mind and an expectant heart, that by the assurance of your presence I may learn to abide in you, who is my Lord and my God. Amen. (EOW2 77)

For Serenity

Jesus, let your mighty calmness lift me above my fears and frustrations. By your deep patience, give me tranquility and stillness of soul in you. Make me in this, and in all, more and more like you. Amen. (EOW2 77)

Class 2: In Times of Sickness and Weakness

Scripture Verses

Exodus 15:2 –          “The Lord is my strength and my might, and he has become my salvation; this is my God, and I will praise him, my father’s God, and I will exalt him.”

Joshua 1:9                “Be strong and courageous; do not be frightened or dismayed, for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.”

Psalm 31:24 –          “Be strong, and let your heart take courage, all you who wait for the Lord.”

Psalm 37:23-24 –     “Our steps are made firm by the Lord, when he delights in our way; though we stumble, we shall not fall headlong, for the Lord holds us by the hand.”

Psalm 41:3 –           “The LORD sustains them on their sickbed and ministers to them in their illness.”

Psalm 46:1-4 –         “God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble. Therefore we will not fear, though the earth be moved, and though the mountains be toppled into the depths of the sea; Though its waters rage and foam, and though the mountains tremble at its tumult. The LORD of hosts is with us; the God of Jacob is our stronghold.”

Psalm 121 –             “I lift up my eyes to the hills; from where is my help to come? My help comes from the LORD, the maker of heaven and earth. He will not let your foot be moved and he who watches over you will not fall asleep. Behold, he who keeps watch over Israel shall neither slumber nor sleep; The LORD himself watches over you; the LORD is your shade at your right hand, So that the sun shall not strike you by day, nor the moon by night. The LORD shall preserve you from all evil; it is he who shall keep you safe. The LORD shall watch over your going out and your coming in, from this time forth for evermore.”

Isaiah 40:31 –         “But those who wait for the Lord shall renew their strength, they shall mount up with wings like eagles, they shall run and not be weary, they shall walk and not faint.”

Matthew 8:5-8, 13 –  “When Jesus entered Capernaum, a centurion came to him, appealing to him and saying, “Lord, my servant is lying at home paralyzed, in terrible distress.” And he said to him, “I will come and cure him.” The centurion answered, “Lord, I am not worthy to have you come under my roof; but only speak the word, and my servant will be healed. And to the centurion Jesus said, “Go; let it be done for you according to your faith.” And the servant was healed in that hour.”

Matthew 11:28-30 –    “Jesus said, “Come to me, all you that are weary and are carrying heavy burdens, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn from me; for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.””

2 Corinthians 12:9-10 – “The Lord said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for power is made perfect in weakness.” So, I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may dwell in me. Therefore I am content with weaknesses, insults, hardships, persecutions, and calamities for the sake of Christ; for whenever I am weak, then I am strong.”

Ephesians 6:10 –      “Finally, be strong in the Lord and in the strength of his power.”

Philippians 4:13–     “I can do all things through him who strengthens me.”

Colossians 1:11-12 – “May you be made strong with all the strength that comes from his glorious power, and may you be prepared to endure everything with patience, while joyfully giving thanks to the Father, who has enabled you to share in the inheritance of the saints in the light.”

Prayers

For a Sick Person

God of all comfort, our very present help in trouble: be near to N. for whom our prayers are offered. Look on her with the eyes of your mercy; comfort her with a sense of your presence; preserve her from the enemy; and give her patience in her affliction. Restore her to health, and lead her to your eternal glory; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen. (EOW2 66)

For a Child

Jesus, our Redeemer, Good Shepherd of the sheep, you gather the lambs and carry them in your arms: We entrust our child N. to your loving care. Relieve her pain, restore in her your gifts of joy and strength, and raise her up to a life in your service. Hear us, we pray, for your dear Name’s sake. Amen. (EOW2 64)

 

For Strength and Confidence

Heavenly Father, giver of life and health: Comfort and relieve your sick servant N., and give your power of healing to those who minister to his needs, that hemay be strengthened in his weakness and have confidence in your loving care; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen. (BCP 459)

For Trust in God

O God, the source of all health: So fill my heart with faith in your love, that with calm expectancy I may make room for your power to possess me, and gracefully accept your healing; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen. (BCP 460)

 

 

In Pain

Lord Jesus Christ, by your patience in suffering you hallowed earthly pain and gave us the example of obedience to your Father’s will: Be near me in my time of weakness and pain; sustain me by your grace, that my strength and courage may not fail; heal me according to your will; and help me always to believe that what happens to me here is of little account if you hold me in eternal life, my Lord and my God. Amen. (BCP 460)

For One Suffering from Mental Distress

Blessed Jesus, in the comfort of your love, I lay before you the memories that haunt me, the anxieties that perplex me, the despair that frightens me, and my frustration at my inability to think clearly. Help me to discover your forgiveness in my memories and know your peace in my distress. Touch me, O Lord, and fill me with your light and your hope. Amen.
(EOW2 73)

 

Before an Operation

Strengthen your servant N., O God, to do what he has to do and bear what he has to bear; that, accepting your healing gifts through the skill of surgeons and nurses, he may be restored to usefulness in your world with a thankful heart; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen. (BCP 459)

 

For Difficult Treatment Choices

Jesus, at Gethsemane you toiled with terrifying choices. Be with me now as I struggle with a fearful choice of treatments which promise much discomfort and offer no guarantee of long-term good. Help me know that you will bless my choice to me, and, good Savior, be my companion on the way. Amen. (EOW2 79)