In you, oh God, we have life and community.
In the city and in us, may your voice be heard.
is the love that you place in our hearts.
is the promise of hope you made.
We gather as the city.
We gather as the disconnected.
We gather as the restless.
We gather to offer an urban mass:
to acknowledge our restlessness,
to pray for rest, to remember your sacrifice
and to celebrate a reconnection.
God, you see all time and space spread out before you
while we see only in part.
You know the paths set out for us while
we see only our journey to this present moment.
Thank you that we are here together now.
Reconnect us to our environment,
to the community we serve and to each other,
so that while our paths disperse again, we may move as one.
We ask in the name of the Father,
of the Son
and of the Holy Spirit.
In prayer, let us confess to God as a community.
Father, we see the good things in the world and in your law,
and we hear your invitation to live life as it is meant to be lived.
Yet, we often ignore you and ignore the good things you would have us do.
Instead, we chase our own desires and satisfy our selfish appetites.
Father, we have sinned. In your mercy, forgive us.
We see Jesus in his life, tirelessly loving others,
pouring out himself for them, and ultimately giving up his life.
Yet, we are selfish with our time and energy,
failing to love our friends and family because
we are too tired, too stressed, too preoccupied.
Jesus, we have sinned. In your mercy, forgive us.
You have given us your Spirit to comfort and guide us.
He speaks to our hearts and leads us to truth.
But we look for guidance everywhere else –
turning to other people and to human intellect instead of seeking your counsel,
and ultimately we just do what we selfishly wish for ourselves.
Spirit of God, we have sinned. In your mercy, forgive us.
Help us, Father, to hear your voice.
May we be a people strengthened by your life and your teachings,
that all may see your grace reflected in our lives abundantly.
We pray to our God in community, holy in One. Amen.
In what ways are we addicted to ourselves, our lives and our circumstances?
What rhythms do we practice that allow us to look beyond ourselves and make God central in what we do?
Now, go forth from this place
with renewed inspiration to do the work of God.
Seek good, not evil,
love goodness, and establish justice.
This the greatest offering we can make;
letting justice roll down like waters,
and righteousness like an ever-flowing stream.
So go from here with joy and confidence
to love and serve the Lord.
For the blessing of God,
the love of Jesus Christ,
and the presence of the Holy Spirit
goes with you. Amen.
Go in peace and live the church.
See you throughout the week.
[Photo by Astrid. @ Flickr]