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Jamie Smith recently gave a lecture in which he said that repentance and assurance in worship are remarkable formative practices that are indispensable to the Christian life. He noted that on Oprah, we can find a form of assurance ("you're o.k.," "just be yourself"), while our shopping mall elicits shame or anxiety in all of us ("none of us measure up to the standards of the good life projected there.") But Christian worship, when it practices the basic moves of faith, offers us true confession and true assurance: "it is true, we have sinned in thought, word, and deed; but in Jesus, we are forgiven and transformed." Hear Jamie's provocative lecture here. Or check out his discussions of similar themes in his award-winning book, Desiring the Kingdom. As Jamie's message unfolds, we begin to wonder why we would ever want to have a worship service without these basic Christian practices.

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