Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Midweek Meditation: "Ash Wednesday"

Today is Ash Wednesday. This week, we will be meditating on this prayer by William Barclay, an Ash Wednesday prayer. We begin the Season of Lent today.

O God, Creator and Father of all, we know that your love is over every creature whom your hands have made. We know that your only wish is not to destroy but to save, not to condemn but to forgive. And we know that, if we would receive your forgiveness, the only thing that we can bring, and the only thing that we need to bring, to you is the penitent and the contrite heart. Save us from everything which would hinder us from having a godly sorrow for our sins.

Save us, O God,      
     From the blindness, which is not even aware that it is sinning;     
     From the pride, which cannot admit that it is wrong;     
     From the self-will, which can see nothing but its own way;     
     From the self-righteousness, which can see no flaw within itself;     
     From the callousness, which has sinned so often that it has ceased to care;     
     From the defiance, which is not even sorry for its sins;      
     From the evasion, which always puts the blame on someone or something else;     
     From the heart so hardened, that it cannot repent.

Give us at all times,     
     Eyes which are open to our faults;     
     A conscience which is sensitive and quick to warn;     
     a heart that cannot sin in peace, but is moved to regret and remorse.

So grant that being truly penitent we may be truly forgiven, so that we may find that your love is great enough to cover all of his sin; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen. (William Barclay in Prayers for the Christian Year, p46-47)

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