Confessions: An Apology of the Soul

To the Church both local and universal. I’m sorry.

I love the church. I really do. The past eight years of my life have been devoted to living, loving, and serving in the church. I have also always been somewhat of an idealist. Burning inside me, there is an oddly intense idea of how I sense things ought to be. Idealism has its place. I think we should all strive for certain ideals. However idealism has a tendency, as most things, to split off into two paths; one good, one bad. Idealism either leads to hope or to bitterness. Lately, my idealism has all too often led to a bitter cynicism toward the church and toward life in general.

Sometimes I feel like my tongue is filled with poison. I speak words of criticism, only looking to correct and hardly to commend. Mostly the criticism comes from my own stubbornness and pride, but sometimes I’m surprised by how sick my soul is with bitterness. Maybe I am simply tired and grumpy, but I fear that this runs deeper than circumstances. Cynicism steals joy and stifles creativity. It not only subjects me to joyless living, but also infects those around me. I desperately want out. I hope for that to begin with this apology.

For speaking words of death instead of life, I’m sorry.

For approaching you with bitterness instead of hope, I’m sorry.

For giving you criticism instead of love, I’m sorry.

For mocking your phrases, I’m sorry.

For distancing your practices, I’m sorry.

I desperately want to be a life giving presence. I want to be an architect, not a demolitionist. I desire creativity rather than criticism. I am sorry for losing hope for you. I ask you for help. Help me to be a hope-filled person. Help me to not give in to bitterness. Know that my critical words are birthed out of an idealism that longs to love, shape, and build. Stop me when they cause harm and destruction. Call me to repentance again and again.

I confess to Almighty God, to his Church, and to you, that
I have sinned by my own fault in thought, word, and deed, in
things done and left undone; especially in matters of the soul.
For these and all other sins which I cannot now remember, I am
truly sorry. I pray God to have mercy on me. I firmly intend
amendment of life, and I humbly beg forgiveness of God and
his Church, and ask you for counsel, direction, and absolution.

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