A Communal Prayer for Advent (Mt. 3:1-12)
God, we are a people who are surrounded by noise outside of us and filled with noise inside of us. The clutter within builds up and buries the way to our hearts. You've given us a gift to clear a way, to unburden ourselves, and that's confession.
We come to You as people came to John the Baptist to confess—
In the silence we allow the memories and the words to rise up so that we may speak them to You. Here's what we've been carrying around, the harm we've done knowingly or unknowingly to ourselves and others, here's what has crowded out Your Voice of Love...
(~30 seconds of silence)
Forgive us. Forgive us.
Just admitting them lifts a burden. Just speaking them to You allows our hearts to be bathed and cleansed, preparing a way to hear Your invitation to repentance. May we not only confess but turn away again and again from the thoughts and actions which create the burdens and clutter.
Give us grace to continuously prepare a way for You in our hearts, our community and our world. Come Lord Jesus, Amen