Lenten Penitence

Posted on March 12, 2014 | 8 comments

We are a week into the season of Lent. A season of confession and repentance. The act of ‘giving something up’ used to break our grip on those things we cling to rather than Christ.

Lent is a time to actively refocus trust.

Choosing to trust.

All week I have been dwelling of the Litany of Penitence from the Ash Wednesday service. (see We Are Dust)

I’m committing to read it everyday, not as self-flogging, but as a reminder of the temptations and subtle ways I break communion with God. It is a reminder of the cheap substitutes I’m willing to create for fleeting feelings of wholeness.

If you’ll allow me, I’d like to share it with you all. Direct from the Episcopal Book of Common Prayer. (Note: For my personal reading, I have changed the pronouns to the singular form. Those changes are mine, all other text is verbatim.)

Make it your prayer today and may it be a reminder to keep your eyes focused on the face of the Creator, Redeemer, and Restorer.

Most holy and merciful Father: I confess to you, and to the whole communion of saints in heaven and on earth, that I have sinned by my own fault in thought, word, and deed; by what I have done, and by what I have left undone.

I have not loved you with my whole heart, and mind, and strength. I have not love my neighbors as myself. I have not forgiven others, as I have been forgiven. Have mercy on me, Lord.

I have been deaf to your call to serve, as Christ served me. I have not been true to the mind of Christ. I have grieved your Holy Spirit. Have mercy on me, Lord.

I confess to you, Lord, all my past unfaithfulness: the pride, hypocrisy, and impatience of my life, I confess to you, Lord.

My self-indulgent appetites and ways, and my exploitation of other people, I confess to you, Lord.

My anger at my own frustration, and my envy of those more fortunate than myself, I confess to you, Lord.

My intemperate love of worldly goods and comforts, and my dishonesty in daily life and work, I confess to you, Lord.

My negligence in prayer and worship, and my failure to commend the faith that is in me, I confess to you, Lord.

Accept my repentance, Lord, for the wrongs I have done: for my blindness to human need and suffering, and my indifference to injustice and cruelty, accept my repentance, Lord.

For all false judgments, for uncharitable thoughts toward my neighbors, and for my prejudice and contempt toward those who differ from me, accept my repentance, Lord.

For my waste and pollution of your creation, and my lack of concern for those who come after me, accept my repentance, Lord.

Restore me, good Lord, and let your anger depart from me; Favorably hear me, for your mercy is great.

Accomplish in me the work of your salvation, That I may show forth your glory in the world.

By the cross and passion of your Son my Lord, Bring me with all your saints to the joy of his resurrection.

Amen. Come Lord Jesus.

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  1. This is a very beautiful and convicting reading. It seems to go hand-in-hand with Psalm 51, which is what I usually read when I’m focused on repentance.
    Thanks for sharing!
    (Visiting from the Thrive @ Home link-up.)

  2. Thank you so much for sharing this with our Let’s Get Real readers. This is a prayer I know well and exactly what I needed today. You have made a difference in my life today. Thank you for helping me to keep the focus where it needs to be today…….and everyday.

  3. Such a convicting prayer. I plan to print it out and use it in my own time with God. Thank you for following God’s leading in what you posted today.


  4. You shared a powerful word. May it prick my heart for good…resulting in changes only He can accomplish. Thanks.

  5. Thank you for sharing this special prayer with us on Spiritual Sundays. I need to make it my prayer too and I’m pretty sure everyone could say the same.

  6. Thank you for sharing your words of wisdom and challenge with us here at Tell me a Story. http://letmetelluastory.blogspot.com/
    I am so thankful that Jesus has changed me into the person he has planned for me to be.

  7. So beautiful and exactly what I needed to read & remind myself today. Thanks for sharing on Whatever Wednesday on Thank You Honey! Hope to see you again next week!

  8. Excited to see so many posts about faith and trust this week at UNITE! Glad to have you stop by this past week at UNITE! ~ Jen

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