Here’s a prayer of confession and words of assurance based on the suggested scripture readings for Proper 20 B (the 17th Sunday after Pentecost). It was written by Moira Laidlaw.
Prayer of Confession
(inspired by James 3:13 – 4:3)
Lord Jesus Christ, there are
times when we all feel like victims—
pawns in the powerplays which are so much a part of life these days.
As usual, however, you look into our hearts
and question what part we play in these power games.
We know that in your eyes it is not social status,
or wealth or reputation that count,
and we confess how easily our lives can become enmeshed
in such wordly values.
You risked personal comfort and security
when you reached out to those on the edge of your society,
lepers and sinners—people whom others considered unclean.
Forgive us when we fail to meet your challenge
identify with those whom society would call worthless.
You showed us that the journey of discipleship
is a journey into servanthood and powerlessness.
Forgive us for being tempted to pursue power
favour competition over compassion.
You, Lord, saw the good in everyone
and showed us exactly what it means to be the servant of all,
while too often we see others as rivals
race for success, influence and popularity.
“Whoever wants to be first must be last of all
and servant of all.”
these words on our hearts
and put your living Spirit within us, we pray,
so that we serve others and you
with wisdom, understanding, love and compassion. Amen.
~ written by Moira Laidlaw, and posted on Liturgies Online. http://www.liturgiesonline.com.au/