Ask the congregation to imagine what would change if they arrived for church one Sunday morning and were greeted in person by Jesus.
How would they feel? Invite people to call out any answers.
People are bound to include the fact that they would be aware of all they have done wrong. Hopefully they will also talk about a heightened sense of expectation, expecting Jesus to say and do amazing things.
Place an empty chair at the front.
Remind everyone that Jesus says that when we gather in his name he is there with us.
The chair is a reminder of his presence with us.
Invite the congregation to take a moment of silence to bring to Jesus anything they want to.
Conclude with a prayer thanking Jesus for the promise of his presence and with it his forgiveness as we confess our sins to him. Ask for eyes faith to see that he is indeed present to speak and act among us.