A Lenten Confession

Here on Ash Wednesday, I’d like to share a liturgy I wrote (oh so long ago!) in 2008.


Forty Days, Forty Sins

In observance of the Lenten season and its forty days of reflection, this is my confession:

Lord Jesus Christ, Son of God, have mercy on me, a sinner.

1. I have not loved you with my whole heart.

2. I have not loved my neighbor as myself.

Lord Jesus Christ, Son of God, have mercy on me, a sinner.

3. I have secrets.

4. Yet, I claimed to be honest.

5. I have lied with pride to save face,

6. and in self-deprecation to appear humble.

Lord Jesus Christ, Son of God, have mercy on me, a sinner.

7. I have cursed you silently

8. and openly.

9. I have laughed with those who mock you

10. And tolerated those who hate you.

Lord Jesus Christ, Son of God, have mercy on me, a sinner.

11. I have not loved your Church.

12. I have avoided your people for the sake of my own comfort,

13. for the sake of my dogma,

14. for the sake of my preferences.

Lord Jesus Christ, Son of God, have mercy on me, a sinner.

15. I have not been faithful with all you have given me.

16. I have claimed a right to your blessings

17. and have hoarded them.

Lord Jesus Christ, Son of God, have mercy on me, a sinner.

18. I have not thanked you enough privately

19. nor publicly.

20. I have accepted the credit for your work.

Lord Jesus Christ, Son of God, have mercy on me, a sinner.

21. I have not loved those whom you have brought closest to me:

22. my family;

23. my friends;

24. the strangers on the street.

Lord Jesus Christ, Son of God, have mercy on me, a sinner.

25. I have not proclaimed your name to the nations,

26. nor to my own city.

Lord Jesus Christ, Son of God, have mercy on me, a sinner.

27. I have quenched your Spirit out of fear

28. and embarrassment.

Lord Jesus Christ, Son of God, have mercy on me, a sinner.

29. I have delighted in my sin.

30. And in the memory of my sin.

31. And in anticipation of my sin.

Lord Jesus Christ, Son of God, have mercy on me, a sinner.

32. I have believed you would abandon me

33. and I have acted in fear.

Lord Jesus Christ, Son of God, have mercy on me, a sinner.

34. I have not spoken enough about the joy of knowing you,

35. nor the thrill of a life with you,

36. nor the peace found in you,

36. nor the magnitude of my pain without you.

37. I have left too much unsaid.

Lord Jesus Christ, Son of God, have mercy on me, a sinner.

38. I have been impatient with you

39. and with others.

Lord Jesus Christ, Son of God, have mercy on me, a sinner.

40. I have not preached the resurrection.

Lord Jesus Christ, Son of God, have mercy on me, a sinner.

Amen.

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