A few blogs ago we reflected on forgiveness and the place of confession in our services. I have been thinking about this a bit more. How about a liturgy that right from the off affirms how much God loves humanity – you, me, us. We hear words from the service leader, said to each other, including such things as:
• God loves that we have come to worship;
• that we are close to his heart;
• that God has placed his hope and trust in us;
• that we are a loved people, regardless of how the last week, month or how ever long it has been since we were last in Church has been;
• we are welcomed into God’s presence without a sense of earning it.
My previous comments about confessing too soon, is that I can get to Church some weeks feeling crap enough, without being reminded of it. Sometimes my and perhaps others initial need, even primary need, is to be reminded how much God loves and welcomes me, is glad I am here, and believes in me and my potential.
I wonder if this happened how we might feel, how visitors might sense God is for them and affirms them. I am not saying we should go to Church just to receive positive strokes from God, but if God’s primary attitude towards us is love, why not start our services being reminded and affirmed in this. We seem to give each other enough impression of judgement, how about we start by being told and reminding each other, that God is a God of love and that is how he feels about you and me.