We confess to you, Lord, what we are:
we are not the people we like others to think we are;
we are afraid to admit even to ourselves what lies in the depths of our souls.
But we do not want to hide our true selves from you.
We believe that you know us as we are, and yet you still love us.
Help us not to shrink from self-knowledge;
teach us to respect ourselves for your sake;
give us the courage to put our trust in your guiding power.
Raise us out of the paralysis of guilt and fear
and take us into the freedom and energy of forgiven people.
And for those who through long habit find forgiveness hard to accept,
we ask that you would break their bondage and set them free.
Through Jesus Christ we pray, Amen.
Dr. Maynard Pittendreigh