Yesterday I posted a prayer of Confession for human failure in creation care and culpability in damage to the earth and invited anyone who would wish to share what it might be liturgically to offer an Assurance of Grace for this confession so that we could go forward. The confession below was written by Isobel Degruchy of South Africa and an Assurance of Grace was written in response by Norma Brettell of New Hampshire, United States.
Confession of what we have done to creation
Lord, we are aware, as no others before us
of the vastness of our universe, your creation.
We are becoming more aware of its complexity,
its balance, its workings.
And in our arrogance we think it is there for our use,
its purpose to support our wants;
we think that we can control it.
We have rejected you the creator and your purpose.
But now we are becoming aware
of how things are going wrong,
of how we are irreparably damaging our earth.
Lord, forgive us our arrogance,
our refusal to see your purpose,
your purpose of love at the heart of your universe.
Forgive us and set us on the right path,
of loving your creation,
and working to restore it and protect it.
Assurance of Grace
Lord, you have birthed us within and part of your vast creation,
beautiful, bold, fragile and holy.
Much of your magnificent creation seems to praise you better than we humans do.
Even so, you promise to make all things new, to make us new.
You do not condemn us, but in Jesus Christ you forgive us
and free us to begin our lives anew,
to restore our relationship with you and with the rest of creation,
sisters and brothers to us in our shared Mother Earth.
Our lives thus restored will know a communion with all living things:
we will seek always to renew the fertility of the earth and not use it only for our own desires.
Our lives thus restored will treasure the tiniest bits of life:
for the sparrow is your concern, and you are familiar with each hair of our heads.
Our lives thus restored will attend to the needs of your creation:
we will be always ready to recognize and turn away from our own greed.
Our lives thus restored will know the difference between what we want, and what we truly need:
Let us begin anew today, forgiven, restored, and eager to praise you in harmony with all creation.