So guess who gets to come up with our corporate confession each week? Yep. Me. Every Thursday our church secretary, Kim, prods me with statements like, "I need your confession." These aren't words we Protestants use much, so it sounds a bit strange to me every time she says it. But it has been a helpful devotional practice. As I write or find a fitting prayer for us to share as a congregation, it is as much a personal prayer on my own behalf as one I hope will be meaningful and helpful for the rest of our church family.
Why does church tradition include this practice of verbalizing our sinfulness and proclaiming our fallen state? Shouldn't we focus on happy thoughts and avoid this "negative thinking?" In answer to this, I love the quote below from Frederick Buechner:
"What we hunger for perhaps more than anything else is to be known in our full humanness, and yet that is often just what we also fear more than anything else. It is important to tell at least from time to time the secret of who we truly and fully are ... because otherwise we run the risk of losing track of who we truly and fully are and little by little come to accept instead the highly edited version which we put forth in hope that the world will find it more acceptable than the real thing. It is important to tell our secrets too because it makes it easier ... for other people to tell us a secret or two of their own."
Here's to being fearless on Sundays as we tell the truth (before God and everyone) of who we truly and fully are.