So yesterday was Ash Wednesday, the kick off of the season of lent in the Christian tradition. It is early this year in the secular calendar, and I must admit that it has thrown me a bit off. Normally, I am stoked for lent. I love it. It's like the Christian post season where everybody takes the practice of their faith up a notch. But this year I haven't gotten into it yet. I don't have a Lenten discipline that I am taking on, or a plan for deeper prayer and reflection. Thoughts of what must be done and a desire to simply work hard at my job are primary in my mind. I guess the fact that God alone is not primary in my mind is a signal that I need a Holy Lent, a season of refocusing on God. Therefore, in hopes of moving into lent here is a confession I wrote for our contemporary services here at All Saints:
Gracious God, who creates all there is and loves all there is; you command us to love as you love. We failed, we fail, and we are failing. Too many of your children, our neighbors, went hungry and died today; too many of your children, our neighbors, were oppressed today; too many of us counted our wealth in material possessions instead of your love today for us to call ourselves successful Christians, successful God Lovers. Please forgive us. For Christ’s sake have mercy on us. Give us yet another chance to love ourselves, our neighbors, and you as you want us to. Amen!