A prayer of praise for Ash Wednesday
inspired by Psalm 51
With one heart we gather,
a community of brokenness, indebted to the One who pays all.
Have mercy on us, O God, according to your steadfast love;
according to your abundant mercy blot out our transgressions.
In one voice we pray,
for ourselves, for our church, and for our world:
Purge us with hyssop, and we shall be clean;
wash us and we shall be whiter than snow.
One thing we know for sure:
only You, O God, can create in us a clean heart,
and put a new and right spirit within us.
For we have this one hope:
that You will restore to us the joy of your salvation,
and sustain in us a willing spirit.
We are willing to be the ones You call.
Though we are dust, You breathe us into life.
Though we bear the ashes of sorrow and repentance,
O Lord, open our lips, and our mouths will declare your praise.