When I was little, I had an Etch-a-Sketch. Perhaps it was the precursor to all of the screens that we have today. A grey screen surrounded by a red frame with two knobs at the bottom corners which would control the movement of lines in the drawing up and down. The great things for an artist like me who was not really that good at drawing pictures was that with a few good shakes you could erase your picture and start again.
We talk a lot about God’s grace and I think this is the way forgiveness and grace work in our lives. Our lives can be full of all kinds of messy pictures, but God comes along and gives us a good shake and we start off with a fresh, clean slate. There are two challenges, though. The first is being open to receiving God’s grace and the second is believing that our slate can be wiped clean.
I always see the New Year as something like this. It is a time when we can erase the old patterns and habits and ways of doing things and start afresh. It is a time to seek anew God’s grace and open ourselves up in prayer consciously asking for forgiveness for what we feel is wrong in our lives.
Sometimes we don’t know where to begin with our prayers. I have found the following prayer helpful when I don’t know what to say to God:
Gracious God, only source of life and health:
Help, comfort, and relieve me,
and give your power of healing
to those who minister to my needs;
that my weakness may be turned
to strength and confidence
in your loving care;
for the sake of Jesus Christ.
To hear and see the live-stream of this sermon (the whole service) please visit Kamloops United Church’s YouTube channel. Click here for this, Jan. 3, 2021 Epiphany Worship Service. The archives of other services and KUC youtube videos will be found next to the Jan. 3rd video.