Proper 17B

Song of Solomon 2:8-13

Psalm 45:1-2, 6-9

James 1:17-27

Mark 7:1-8, 14-15, 21-23


You can find a YouTube playlist here with many of the songs suggested below.



Gathering


The image of the heart from the Gospel could make an appropriate link to praising God with our whole heart as we gather to worship and this is picked up in Give thanks with a grateful heart (CH 180 / MP 170), Praise, I will praise you, Lord / Je louerai l’Éternel (CH 175), I give you my heart (CCLI) or With grateful heart my thanks I bring (PFAS 138A / Grace). There are also some good general gathering songs which have hints of this imagery such as Waiting here for you (CCLI) (“still you know my heart”), Here for you (CCLI) (“to you our hearts are open”) and Let his praise be on our lips (Satellite) (“hearts overflowing”).



Word


There are slim pickings for the psalm today. For the honour of our King (PFAS 45A / Grace) is a fairly concise metrical setting, with Monkland my preference for a tune, while O King (link) is a more extended setting sung to Thaxted.


It’s not just the psalm from today’s readings which was written as a song though and Arise my love (GIA) would allow you to sing the Old Testament passage responsorially, with options to either sing or read the passage.



Response


At the core of the Gospel passage is that evil comes from the human heart and so Create in me a clean heart O God (PFAS 51F), Create in me (CCLI) or Change my heart, O God (PFAS 51A / CCLI) would offer an appropriate response to that. You could also use songs such as Lord Jesus, think on me (CH 491) which asks to “make me pure within” or Lord Jesus, I’m eager to answer your call (WGRG) which is a beautiful short chant asking to “take me, remake me… as I follow your will and your way”.


Be doers of the word of God (Carolyn) is directly based on the Epistle (along with other related verses). You could also consider songs which pick up on the call to live out faith through action with Take my life, Lord, let it be (CH 502 / MP 624) being a well known option which explores different ways we can do that, with Humbly in your sight (CH 496) following a similar pattern. Some other options could be Take this moment (CH 501) or I will offer up my life (CH 503 / MP 990 / CCLI), which could also link back to the Gospel with it’s reference to a “broken heart”.



Sending


The Epistle offers us a call to action and you can pick up on that with Go to the world! Go into all the earth (CH 683), with the call to “live the word” particularly relevant, while Sent by the Lord am I (CH 250) is always a lively option with a focus on the practical work we are called to do. Lord, for the years (CH 159 / MP 428) can also link to the Gospel as we ask God to remake us and help us live for Christ alone while Lord of creation, to you be all praise (CH 500) also links this dedication and the heart imagery. We say yes (CCLI) and Build my life (CCLI) are more recent songs which also pick up similar themes.


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