Confession is difficult. It’s an act of vulnerability. To paraphrase the Miranda Rights statement: We remain silent because anything we say can and will be used against us in the court of life. If I confess my wrongs or weaknesses, you–or God–may use them against me. I become vulnerable, at the mercy of, to whomever I’ve confessed to.
But God promises not to use our confession against us. “If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.” (1 John 1:9 NIV). Later in his letter John assures us “There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear, because fear has to do with punishment.” (1 John 4:18 NIV). God’s perfect love for us shown through Christ’s death promises redemption not imprisonment.
Another reason confession is unpopular is we know only its negative meaning. To admit a wrong. But the word alone simply means to declare or assent or even to agree with. Therefore, to confess can mean to assent to God’s love for us. To agree with God’s view of us. This psalm of confession contains both meanings: confession of being created “very good” by God and being very bent or needy when estranged from God. May this prayer bring you forgiveness and wholeness.
Giver of Life:
You are the vine and we are the branches. You made us fearfully and wonderfully.
You breathed life in us and pronounced us “very good.”
Thank you for giving our lives purpose and meaning.
You are more precious even than the air we breathe.
We praise you for creating and sustaining us.
And because you created us, there is no secret we can hide from you.
Our sins that have darkened our hearts and minds you have already named and accounted for in Christ’s sacrifice.
Yet, even while planted and rooted in your love, we have broken our branch free from your vine.
We have come to believe we can support and justify our own lives.
To bolster this untruth, we paint false fruit on our withering branches and stand tall as our roots shrivel in thirst for you.
Forgive us for pretending as if we don’t need you every moment of every day.
Forgive us for producing little if any fruit that reflects your glory and goodness.
You chose us out of your mercy and grace and we have believed we deserved it. We confess we do not deserve your love but we desperately desire it.
Graft us back onto your vine.
Bury our roots once more in your soil.
Let our branches once again produce the fruit of the Spirit.
May our lives once again bring the shade and protection of your peace to our world.
In the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit