We were asked to prepare and lead a 'Liturgy for our times' at the UK Songwriters Consultation, organised by Graham Kendrick and Spring Harvest. This time of mostly spoken worship followed a really challenging day of teaching from Jim Wallis of Sojourners, about how the worship 'scene' in the UK might move from Market, to Ministry, to Movement. He asked us to write songs that reflected God's heart for the whole world, and challenged us to 'live the story' of service for the least.

We are working on permission to post more of the liturgies from that time, but to start with here is the confession that we wrote as a response to Jim's challenge. I hope it will be useful for you as your church or worship team consider how you can re-forge the link between our sung worship and our heart for God's justice and fairness in the world; a link which is so inseperable in scripture.


Father, when our worship has been more about us than about you,
Lord have mercy.

When our songs have ignored the pain of your broken body on earth,
Christ have mercy.

When our services have been more of an escape for us, than good news to the poor,
Lord, have mercy.

When we praise you with our lips, but deny you with our finances,
Christ, have mercy.

When our instruments are louder than our cries for justice,
Lord, have mercy.

When we fail to learn from the sacrificial worship of brothers and sisters across the world,
Christ, have mercy.

Receiving forgiveness

May God forgive us our sins,
cleanse us by the blood of Christ,
and fill us with his Holy Spirit,
to lead lives of worship
that bring his resurrection power
to our broken world,
and inspire services of worship
which reflect his heart for justice,
mercy and humility.
In the name of Christ we pray,

© Sam Hargreaves/engageworship.org