a palm / passion sunday prayer of approach & confession

I offered this Prayer of Approach and Confession for Palm/Passion Sunday when I served as Worship Elder during Holy Week at University Congregation.

You come to us in humility.
You enter the gates of the city on a donkey.
You pass through the doors of our hearts as long-awaited guest.
We cry: “Hosanna … Blessed is the One who comes in the name of the Lord.”

Blessed are You, for You know the truth about the trouble
          in our world,
          in our city,
          in our soul.

Blessed are You, for though You know the truth about the trouble and our part in it
             You come not in might to destroy
                         but in love to make new.

Your love confounds us,
                 astounds us,
                 overwhelms us
                        and so we turn to You,
                        we trust in You,
                        we follow You.

Yet, with the crowd who quickly turn
                from gleeful cheers of “Hosanna”
                to jeering taunts of “Crucify”
                          we flee from the suffering You call us to share and to bear
                          with You and with our neighbours in trouble.

With Peter who hears the cock crow
                we know the pain of promises broken for the sake of the easy way out
                         and the grief of a past that we cannot repair.

In silence we confess our sin to You …

You enter Your promised land of Kingdom come through the gateway of a cross.
       Take us with You        
             through death to life
             through guilt to innocence,
             through shame to mercy.

Lead us to 
             Your place of reconciliation,
             Your land of forgiveness,
             Your time of utter newness
                   the place, land and time
                   that is as close as our turning to You,
                                                               here and now.

We pray in Your Cruciform Name, Amen.

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