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Pastor: Rev. Kendra Balliet
Organist: Jim Ross

PRELUDE - Pastorale from 8th Concerto- Corelli



Leader: Hear the sound of the angels declaring, “Fear not, for behold, I bring good news of great joy that will be for all people.”
People: Amazing grace, how sweet the sound!
Leader: Hear the announcement of God’s promise delivered: “Unto you is born this day in the city of David a Savior, who is Christ the Lord.”
People: Amazing Grace, how sweet the sound!
Leader: Hear the song of angels and mankind together praising God:
People: “Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace among those with whom he is pleased!

Leader: Today we light the third Advent candle, the candle of joy. When Mary, the mother of our Lord, visited her kinswoman Elizabeth, Elizabeth’s unborn son John leaped for joy at the sound of Mary’s greeting. Elizabeth was filled with joy, knowing that the promised Messiah would soon be born. We, too, rejoice as we prepare to celebrate our Savior’s birth.
People: We will rejoice in the Lord, now and forever!
Leader: The prophet Isaiah foretold a highway, the Way of Holiness, a place where the redeemed would walk. Following that holy Way, the redeemed would live in the presence of God and know everlasting joy. Jesus is the Way, the Truth and the Life.
People: We will rejoice in the Lord, now and forever!
(One pink and two purple candles are lit on the Advent wreath.)

*OPENING HYMN – Hark the Herald


Amazing grace! How sweet the sound. We all know the hymn. It’s been a favorite of Christians for a long time. In fact, this year marks the 250th anniversary of the hymn. You may be thinking, “That’s nice, but what does this song have to do with Christmas?” The truth is, the birth of Jesus is God’s amazing grace. Jesus is the embodiment of God’s underserved love (that’s what grace means), lying in a manger, sent to save a wretch like me; like you. He came to seek and save the lost.

He came to open the eyes of the blind, whose vision of God is clouded by worldly ideals and ungodly ways because of sin. He came to crush fear and restore our reverence and awe of our heavenly Father. He came to protect us from the power of Satan who wants to pull us away from God’s grace. He came to give hope to the hopeless with the promise of eternal life with him where there will be no more crying or pain. And he came to tune our hearts toward him and put a new song in our mouths—a song of praise to our God—a song that all who believe in him will sing around his throne in heaven for eternity. So, what does the hymn “Amazing Grace” have to do with Christmas? Everything! Now let’s listen to the sweet sound of our children who will proclaim this good news of Jesus’ birth—God’s amazing grace in a manger!

Children, Youth and Families present: Amazing Grace in A Manger

HYMN – O Little Town of Bethlehem (sung after the shepherds exit)

CLOSING PRAYER - Thank you, Lord, for sending these children, your precious messengers, to bring your Word to us this day. May we respond in praise and thanksgiving for your amazing grace in a manger—our Savior, Jesus, as we spread this good news wherever we go. Amen.

HYMN – Joy to the World

OFFERTORY - Come, Your Hearts and Voices Raising-Raymond Haan

SCRIPTURE Luke 1:39-45

SERIES: The Light of Grace
SERMON - Joy: Elizabeth

 HYMN - “Amazing Grace” #378 vs. 5



CLOSING HYMN - "All Earth Is Waiting" #210 vs. 1-3


POSTLUDE - Sorti, Far, Far Away on Judea's Plain- Franklin Ashdown

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