Prayers of Confession on Self-Reliance

Adapted from Genesis 3:1-6

Pastor: The serpent deceitfully says to the woman, “Did God actually say” what you think He said?

All: O God, we have heard the deceiver’s words, and we have distrusted your word. We have not delighted in your instruction as we ought, and we’ve forgotten and misunderstood your commandments.

Pastor: The serpent deceitfully says to the woman, “God said that you would die if you disobeyed His commandments, but you won’t! You’ll just be more powerful, intelligent, and wise like him!”

All: When we hear that we can be independent of you, O Creator God, we jump at the opportunity. We have loved ourselves more than we have loved you, and this has broken our relationship with you. Forgive us, O God!

Submitted by Dustin Ray

Adapted from Psalm 10:1-7

Pastor: Heavenly Father, I confess that I have sinned against you. I have delighted my soul in other things more than I have in you. Why, then, is it any surprise to me that you feel far off from me? I have driven you away!

All: In my arrogance, I have enjoyed the comforts of this world while I care too little that the poor cannot feed or care for themselves. Because of my greed, I boast of all that I have and all that I desire. 

Pastor: In one moment, I believe that I’m invincible, able to withstand any problem or struggle. In the next moment, I believe that the evil all around me is out to get me. My mouth is full of cursing and deceit and oppression; under my tongue are mischief and iniquity.

All: O God, forgive me of my sin. Look on me with mercy, and give me grace to delight in you, rather than in my sin. Lift me out of this pit of sin, cleanse me of my unrighteousness, and fill me with your Holy Spirit so that I might walk in holiness and obey your commandments.

Submitted by Dustin Ray

 Adapted from Revelation 3:15-22

Pastor: The words of the Amen, the faithful and true witness, the beginning of God’s creation: “I know your works: you are neither cold nor hot. Would that you were either cold or hot! So, because you are lukewarm, and neither hot nor cold, I will spit you out of my mouth.

All: For you say, I am rich, I have prospered, and I need nothing, not realizing that you are wretched, pitiable, poor, blind, and naked. I counsel you to buy from me gold refined by fire, so that you may be rich, and white garments so that you may clothe yourself and the shame of your nakedness may not be seen, and salve to anoint your eyes, so that you may see.

Pastor: Those whom I love, I reprove and discipline, so be zealous and repent. Behold, I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in to him and eat with him, and he with me. The one who conquers, I will grant him to sit with me on my throne, as I also conquered and sat down with my Father on his throne.

All: He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches.”

Submitted by Dustin Ray

Heavenly Father, forgive us when we neglect our reliance on you.  We take for granted many gifts you give, but we also forget your desire to provide.  Help us to receive those gifts, whether they are physical or spiritual, remarkable or mundane, so that we may be in the habit of receiving your Word and your will.  We pray these things in the name of Jesus, in whom you have provided our greatest gift of redemption.  Hear our prayers as we continue our confession in silence…

Submitted by Allen Thompson

Gracious God, Who pours out freely the gift of Your Holy Spirit: We confess before You that we have failed to recognize this most valuable gift. We have been satisfied with ordinary things, suspicious of unfamiliar things, and blind to spiritual things. Cleanse and forgive us, O Lord. Burn away our presumption and self-sufficiency. Open us in faith to receive the renewing touch of Your hand. Through Christ we pray. Amen.

Memorial Drive Presbyterian Church

(Prayer of Adoration)

God, our heavenly Father  

and the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ:   

We praise and thank you today and always! 

You are worthy of our praise 

simply for who You are:  

You are good and You are strong,  

You are gracious, just and loving. 


As we confront this world that lacks hope,  

a world caught up in war, hunger, poverty and  

spiritual emptiness, 

in Your great mercy You freely give us a new birth  

into the living hope  

through Jesus’ resurrection from the dead. 

There is no darkness so great  

that your light is not greater still. 

There is not conflict so disruptive  

that your peace cannot quell it.  

There is no death so final,  

that your resurrection life  

cannot break its icy grip.  And, … 

There is no thief so sneaky or strong  

that he can steal the inheritance you give  

that can never perish, spoil or fade— 

kept in heaven for us.   

Therefore, we rightly worship You!  

(Prayer of Confession)

However, we are quick to trust  

our strength more than yours,  

our wisdom more than yours, 

our abilities more than yours,  

our resources more than yours. 

our love more than yours. 

And our misplaced trust in ourselves  

has led us into sin.   

Forgive us, Lord for all these ways 

we have placed ourselves above you,

In Jesus’ precious name, Amen.

Richard Herman

Almighty God, in Jesus, you meet us where we are. You condescend to our level, yet we wrongfully assume that we are equal to you. We live as rulers of this world masters of own destiny, ignoring your will, and harming others. You alone are worthy of praise and devotion. Even when we do recognize your lordship, it is only fleeting. How quickly we resume our old way of life and live for ourselves first. On this Sunday, we offer again our allegiance to you as you as we come to you silent confession.

Time of silent reflection and confession…

Submitted by Austin D. Hill

Please forgive us, O Lord, for we often forget how powerful you are. You are the potentate of time, yet we think we rule our lives. We are sorry for creating images of you that are smaller than reality. Please show yourself to us as we silently confess our sins to you now…

Submitted by Austin D. Hill

Eternal and Glorious God, You are merciful, kind, and forgiving. You hear us when we confess to You. We admit we do not focus on You  with our whole heart, mind, soul, and strength. A day devoted to You is rarely attempted. We neglect to rest our hearts and minds in You, for we keep going in our power and never stop. We do not attend to Your Word, for we live by the words and idols of our age. We fail to worship with Your people, for we give priority to many other commitments. Forgive our sin, and help us to walk in Your ways to the honor of Your name. Amen.

Memorial Drive Presbyterian Church

Father, as adults, we can fool ourselves into being quite self-sufficient. Yet, You have called us to be precariously dependent upon You. When we see how Jesus welcomes the little children, we can also see that You love us greatly and unconditionally.  Therefore, we confess any and all obstacles that might keep us from approaching You openly, humbly, gladly.  May we shed before You all our pretensions to importance and simply follow You.  In Jesus’ name, we give You thanks and praise. Amen.

Memorial Drive Presbyterian Church

Eternal and loving Father, You comfort, support, and encourage us. Your goodness and kindness go beyond our understanding. Your grace is richer and deeper than we can begin to comprehend. Yet despite Your gracious love and faithful care, we seek to go our own way and to trust our own resources. Time after time, we choose our plans over Your will. Over and over again, our pride, self-reliance, and self-centeredness lead us astray. We confess we are sinners in need of forgiveness. We admit we are flawed, broken people in need of mercy. Through the person and work of Jesus Christ, forgive us for all the times we have failed You. Cleanse our hearts, and make them fresh and new. Renew our minds for Your Kingdom’s sake. Empower us to be Your Son’s disciples for His glory. We pray through Jesus Christ our Lord, in the power of the Holy Spirit, Amen.

Memorial Drive Presbyterian Church

Heavenly Father, forgive us when we try to go our own way and end up running from you.  Forgive us when we shy away from the work that you want to do in our lives.  Help us to be willing to go through your crafting and cutting, and to look at the new year as an opportunity to bear fruit for you.  Guide us with your Holy Spirit to this purpose, and hear our prayers as we continue our confession in silence…

Submitted by Allen Thompson

God of our hearts, we come to You admitting that we are lost. In our lives of chaos, we have lost our peace. In our selfishness, we have lost our ability to care for others. In our self-reliance, we have lost our total dependence on You. We ask for Your forgiveness and mercy for our wandering hearts. Remind us that it is by Your grace we are found. In the Name of Jesus we pray, Amen.

Memorial Drive Presbyterian Church

Gracious God, you love us deeply yet we take your love for granted. Rather than trusting you, we trust the gifts you have given us. We confess that our misplaced hope and reliance is on money, intelligence, and resources. Help us hope, trust, and lean into you. Grow our love for you, that we might rely on you, and be more generous with all you have given to us.

Submitted by Laura Murray

All-gracious God, you promise that your light drowns out darkness, yet the darkness is so persistent. We cannot see in front of us, so we look to our own knowledge and ways. Forgive us for turning to self-reliance, rather than turning to you. Help us to trust you, and to live believing you are the Light of the World, and greater than any darkness. With this confidence, may we give hope to the world.

Submitted by Laura Murray

Gracious God, In the midst of difficult and challenging times, You remain Lord of all creation. We acknowledge how often we choose to depend upon our resources rather than depend upon You. Through the Holy Spirit, You send us courage, Yet our fears continue to hold us. Through the Holy Spirit, You send us comfort, Yet our unease still controls us Through the Holy Spirit, You send us truth, Yet our own wisdom still guides us. Forgive us and free us from our sin Grow our trust and dependence upon You. Strengthen, encourage, and teach us. We pray through Jesus Christ. Amen.

Memorial Drive Presbyterian Church

Holy God, We are not meant to live life alone. We need You and the community of the church. Forgive us when we try to go it alone, When we think we can handle it all without any help. When we forget to rely on one another and on You. We need you and our brothers and sisters in Christ to live a faithful life. Help us to reach out to each other and to You remembering that a strand of three cords is not easily broken. In Jesus’ Name we pray, Amen.

Memorial Drive Presbyterian Church

Lord, You are a great and holy God, and you have asked us to pursue you as the object of our worship and devotion.  But Lord, we have fallen short of what you ask of us, we are a sinful people.  We have fallen into the trap the world has laid as we have pursued money and wealth,

and not pursued godliness, righteousness, and love.  We have put our trust and faith in the things we own, our homes and cars, our education and achievements, our savings and retirement accounts.  Lord, forgive self-reliance and our stinginess.

Bud Thoreen

Based on John 1 and Romans 5

Lord God, we know that you are life, the life which is the light of the world

But sometimes we allow the darkness to close in

We find ourselves driven apart from you

We confess that we do not always trust Christ’s gifts 

Sacrificing grace and truth in order to get ahead in the world

We do not always listen to your Spirit’s teaching and direction

Trusting instead in our own intellect or hard work

Please forgive our thoughtlessness, carelessness, willful ignorance and disobedience

I tell you this: To those who have received Christ and believed in his name, God has given the right to be called children of God. And God demonstrates his own love for us in this way: while we were still sinners, Christ died for us. Since we have now been justified by his blood, how much more shall we be saved from God’s wrath through him! For if, while we were God’s enemies, we were reconciled to him through the death of his Son, how much more, having been reconciled, shall we be saved through his life! So I say to you that your sins are forgiven. Live joyfully, serving God in the freedom of this reconciliation.

Submitted by Jacob Traeger

Psalm 82 and James 1

Father God, too often we show preference to those who appear to have it all together, to those whom we consider complete: the self-motivated, self-made, and self-sufficient. We honor the rich and look past the poor. We invite those with prestige and power to sit in seats of privilege, while we leave the lowly and humble to stand outside and apart. We fashion a religion that is far from the purity that you desire when we defend the unjust and show partiality to the wicked, when we pay respect for the outward appearance and refuse to see the inner heart of a person as you do. Forgive us, we pray, for our neglect, for our complicity, for our impurity of mind, heart, and religion. Conform us to your character. Amen.  

Scott Bullock

God of wisdom, we come before you in humility. Too often we choose our own way, discern our own path, without looking to you. We ignore the prompting of your Holy Spirit, and choose what is easiest, most comfortable, or requires the least from us. Please forgive us for our narrowmindedness. Soften our hearts of stone, that we might have, instead, hearts of flesh to perceive your call in our lives. Then please give us the courage to act on your calling.

Austin D. Hill

Inspired by Matthew 4:12-23

All: Holy Father, You are gracious to call us to Yourself. You are the King of kings, the Lord of Lords, and the Treasure of treasures, worthy of our lives. And just like Jesus called out His disciples to come and follow Himself, He bids us come, follow, live, die, and live again. Yet, we fail to hear and heed His call. We stop up our ears so that we can pretend not to hear Him. Forgive us for believing that we are too busy to follow where You lead us. Forgive us for trying to steer our lives where we think we should go, rather than submitting our lives to you. Restore to us the joy of our salvation—Christ Himself—and help us follow Him and You and Your Holy Spirit, World without end. Amen.

Submitted by Dustin Ray