a community creating for the relentless return of Sunday

Transfiguration Invocation

God of the high and low, we come before you this day seeking your Holy presence. We come to sing praises, pray petitions, and listen to the Word at your holy mountain. We come to experience metamorphosis, to be changed into your people. Change us in this hour so we might speak your Spirit of hope and grace to the world. We pray this in the name of Christ, AMEN.

 

Submitted by Rev. Will Ryan, First Christian Church, Burlington, IA

confession: in the desert

God who comes where we least expect, your prophets spoke of the coming Messiah as new life growing in dry land, a desert teeming with flowers. Yet we forget the prophecy, and so in our own desolate landscapes see only poverty and despair, frustration and rejection. In this Advent, when we await Your coming, we confess our failure of imagination: our inability to believe You could possibly change the shape of the world.

And yet we know that You have come, long ago, to a forgotten corner of the world, to a people on the verge of losing hope, to a woman no one thought could bear a child, and the world has never been the same. Hear us as we pray, that we might find flowers in the desert and celebrate life where it seems impossible. May we look to the darkness of our time and discover there a Light like no other, waiting to shine in us, in whose name we pray, Amen.

 

Submitted by Rev. Laura Cunningham, Western Presbyterian Church, Washington, D.C.

Easter confession

All: We come running, looking for you, Risen Christ,
but you are not where we expect you to be.
As always, you are to be found among the living—
those living at the edge, those living with uncertainty,
those living in ways we cannot imagine and may not approve.
We come running, our hands full of things and our minds full of self-reliance,
only to find that you have been here already,
you have rolled away the stone and called us to trust your word.

One: If this good news is true, it means everything is different now.
We confess that our excitement is a little bit nervous—
it’s hard for us not to be in control.

All: Today as we peer once again into your empty tomb,
remind us of all you have told us, and then guide our feet to follow.
Fill the empty tombs of our hearts with your love that cannot be contained.
Breathe new life into us, into your church, into your world,
and overcome our fear of change so that we too may be found among the living.
Turn our expectations upside down,
and lead us into the new and different world you are creating, even now, even here.
Amen.

 

Submitted by Rev. Teri Peterson, the Presbyterian Church of Palatine, IL

confession: change on our terms

We pray for change.
We pray for transformation.
We pray for transfiguration.
We pray that the world around us will be changed to suit our needs,
to agree with us,
to be like the world we want.
We do not give space for God’s work,
trying to control it,
thinking we know best.
We pray for change—but only on our terms.

God, forgive us for praying for everyone but us to change.
God, forgive us for thinking we know best.
God, be with us.
Strengthen us for the hard work of personal change,
for the difficult task of trusting you,
for the uneasy feeling that we might be wrong.

God be with us, and show us the way to new life.
Submitted by Rev. Greg Bolt, Pastor, First Presbyterian Church, Nebraska City, Nebraska

confession: ready, willing, and able?

God of our renewed lives,
we talk about being better people…
doing things differently…
living more disciplined lives;
but we always talk about doing it tomorrow…
or next week…
or after the beginning of the new year.
Meanwhile, your Spirit surrounds us…
and we swat you away like a pesky fly…
because we don’t have the time, or the energy,
to be transformed.
So lead us to a quiet place of readiness…
and inspire, in us, a willing attitude…
so that we may be able to welcome your newness…
even now…as we offer our silent confessions…

Submitted by Scott Cervas, pastor at Meadowthorpe Presbyterian Church (Lexington, KY)