A Modern Confession

man-prayingForgive us, Lord, for using social media in a prideful way, thoughtlessly posting comments that we find witty and profound, but which others find hurtful. May the words of our mouths – and of our keyboards – be acceptable in Your sight.

Forgive us, Lord, for believing that the political process is the best way to change the world. We follow in the footsteps of generations of Christ-followers who never saw a ballot in their lives, but whose impact will ring throughout eternity. We share this planet today with millions of brothers and sisters whose lives, and whose impact, are similar to theirs. May we never diminish You to a political agenda.

Forgive us, Lord, for creating a celebrity culture among pastors and Christian authors, elevating some to a place of minimal accountability and maximum temptation. We do them no service when we isolate them, or encourage them to isolate themselves, from the ministries and safeguards of the Body of Christ that we all need. Teach our leaders to be humble and wise, and remind them that they will give an account. May they look forward to the day they hear You say, “Well done, good and faithful servant.”

Forgive us, Lord, for holding conferences and writing books in which we say ABOUT our brothers and sisters that which we have not yet said TO them. You call us to a higher standard, and we have failed. Help us to speak the truth in love, giving equal attention to both sides of that phrase.

Forgive us, Lord, for creating institutions that we then need to protect, too often at the expense of the very people they were designed to help. We know that institutions are infamous for chewing people up and spitting them out. May it not be so among us. Make us tenacious in demanding integrity in our institutions, and in those who lead them.

Forgive us, Lord, for airing our dirty laundry through blogs. The watching world needs to see You in us, and instead they too often see bickering and vindictiveness. Make us willing to be silent, and even to be wronged, if the only other option is to bring dishonor to Your name.

Forgive us, Lord, for the clichés and superficiality with which we often talk about You in public. Forgive us for taking short cuts, for seeking the applause line or the easy “Amen!” Your truth is deep and profound, and deserves the best of our communication skills to make it known.

Forgive us, Lord, for allowing the fear of man to take first place in our hearts over the fear of God. Make us bold to believe You, even when what You say to us is hard to believe, and when it costs us the esteem of others.

Forgive me, Lord, for the mixed motivations with which I write and post this prayer. I want it to “make a splash” and be noticed, and in that desire, I see the very pride and the fear of man for which I am asking forgiveness. I am not immune to any of this, Lord. Do Your work in all of us, and start with me.

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About Sabbath Thoughts

My name is Mike Gaston. I am a former missionary, a Shepherding Pastor at Heights Church in Prescott, AZ, a happy husband, a spoiled father of two daughters, a proud grandfather, and a recently-convinced pursuer of the benefits of intentional, regular, contemplative, Christ-centered rest. This blog will allow me to share thoughts about Sabbath, as well as thoughts about God and the Christian life that come out of my restful Sabbath moments.
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26 Responses to A Modern Confession

  1. Dan says:

    Thanks for the pastoral rebuke and encouragement that reminds us of where are hearts and minds need to be focused.

  2. debra petrella says:

    you always hit it right on, and this morning I re- posted a political snipe, my mind sometimes goes rogue. Seriously there must be a moment to think and ask ourselves, is this God honoring??

  3. Mary Lively says:

    Dear Mike:

    I miss your preaching in my life. It’s good to get some of that on your blog. I pray that my heart will change and put Christ at the center of my focus today. Life is hard; the flesh and satan are strong influences. Thank you again for your wise words.

  4. Faith O says:

    Forgive us Lord indeed, for ingesting the worldly chatter, and practices that keep us distracted from Your truth.
    Thank you Mike…for being a vessel of truth that can be poured out just when we need it, in this parched and weary world…

  5. Sherry says:

    As always…very, very well said and heartfelt.

  6. Holly Rogers says:

    Thank you!!

  7. billm17 says:

    Not only do I like your heartfelt comments, but I also like the delivery. Very easy to understand. Thank you. Looking forward to you speaking again at CIA. (Not the one lefty the golfer spoke to)

  8. Lindakilker@aol.com says:

    Mike, Your words have touched me deeply. On many levels. Your confession is my confession. You have reminded me that words are like missiles that once launched cannot be retrieved. They explode in the hearts of our intended targets. Lately I am haunted by recollections of conversations I have had with those that know not our beautiful Savior. It seems that to many that Christians make no sense. Our message of forgiveness, love, and sacrifice is obscured by our harsh rhetoric and indifference to the suffering of others. For reasons not quite clear to me this has produced a profound sadness in my heart. I have contributed to that dichotomy. Within my own family and with outsiders. Your words, Mike have caused me to renew my efforts to seek the face of Christ in every person God places in my path. Thank you. Steve

    • Steve, your goal is a high and holy one, and something tells me that you are better at meeting it than you know. Thank you for your encouraging words, my friend. God is using you.

  9. Donna H says:

    Thank pastor mike.

    Sent from my iPad


  10. Annette M says:

    Thank you for posting this. I really appreciate your “Sabbath Thoughts.”

  11. Ken Royer says:

    Thanks Mike. So well stated. May this be the prayer on all our hearts.

    Loving greetings,

    Ken for Mary too

  12. Todd a says:

    Wow.while I read about 6 “gulps that’s me”s. Gods word spoken with grace and love, as always. Thank you pastor mike

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