12.11.11 Worship Confessional

Advent is a time to dream.

This morning, on the third Sunday of Advent, we explored the concept of joy. The lectionary texts that we focused upon were Psalm 126 and Isaiah 61, both of which contain a future orientation and a call for the people of God to put their faith and trust in the Sovereign God who is the only source of salvation.

Here are a couple of thoughts from my message that I offer to you as points of reflection:

“Joy remembers – joy anticipates.”

“Our lives are shaped not by the limits of our experience but by the hidden reality of what God has already declared will be.” (Unknown)

“It is the business of the church is to ‘remember’ the future. Not merely to remember that there is to be a future, but mysteriously to make the future really present.” (Herbert McCabe)

One of our guitarists, Greg Steele, led our music team this morning. Greg is a gifted musician and one of the leaders of our songwriters community. Two of the songs in our set (“Hope Springs” and “Anticipating”) were original Advent pieces written by Greg. It is tremendous to see members of our community exercising their gifts and using them to encourage and build up our people.

During Advent we have been including a number of more liturgical pieces. Today we adapted a litany of confession from The Worship Sourcebook:

Advent Prayers of Confession

It is the season of Advent, a time set apart in which we prepare our hearts to welcome Christ, who is the bringer of all peace. This morning, let us confess to God the ways in which we block the peace of Christ in our lives.
God of peace, hear our prayer.

The rushing and scurrying to get things done,
and the worry about the little details,
the financial burdens we put on ourselves,
We confess to you, O God of peace.

The impatience and irritability we feel and take out on one another;
The bickering and quarreling we get into because we are too busy,
We confess to you, O God of peace.

Though we make ourselves less than peaceful at this time of the year,
God’s peace is always there for us.
Instill within us your peace, O God.

When we feel overwhelmed,
When we are filled with worry,
When we become irritable,
Instill within us your peace, O God.

When the guilt of our ways threatens to overcome us,
help us to remember that we are forgiven in Christ.
Instill within us your peace, O God.

Instill within us your peace and help us to make choices that bring us closer to you.
Help us to be more peaceful so that we may spread Christ’s peace and love to others. Amen.

Here is our complete worship flow:

  • Hope Springs (Greg Steele)
  • Advent Call to Worship
  • Sing, Sing, Sing (Chris Tomlin)
  • Joyful (Brenton Brown)
  • O Come O Come Emmanuel
  • Advent Prayers of Confession
  • Anticipating (Greg Steele)
  • Announcements and Offering
  • Prayer for Illumination
  • Message
  • Benediction from 1 Thessalonians 5:16-24
  • Reprise: Hope Springs

You can learn what other communities of faith experienced in worship this weekend at The Worship Community.

Stay connected…


  1. Wow, love this set, love these songs and the prayers.

    Are recordings of the original songs available?
    Rob Still recently posted..December 11 Worship Recap

  2. Maggie Cook says:

    Wow, I really like the Advent Prayers of Confession. Is this something I could use with my Congregation? Maggie

  3. Cool! I want to those songs too 🙂 You rock Terry! Love your posts. I learn from you um, every week 🙂
    HL McConnell recently posted..Songs We Sing @ FPC Vine 12-11-11

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