Ash Wednesday hymn: Merciful God

Merciful God, our lives are set before you,
each public act, each hidden motive known.
Heal now the hardened hearts that half-ignore you,
bring us to place our trust in you alone.

Too long we’ve let our arrogance deceive us,
standing apart with virtue on parade.
Too long we’ve fooled ourselves that God receives us
not for our faith, but for our deeds displayed.

We turn to you in ashes and confession,
heeding your word of promise and of love.
God great and awesome, we are your possession:
hear and forgive us, Lord, your power prove.

Have mercy, Lord, renew us in repentance.
Lift up our eyes, and on us shine your face.
Make us a parable of your acceptance,
the love of Christ lived out in humble grace.

Biblical references: Luke 18.9-14; Daniel 9.3-6, 17-19
Suggested tune: ‘Highwood’


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