I apologise if this a klotz kasher, but as Pirkei Avos 2:5 says:
וְלֹא הַבַּיְשָׁן לָמֵד
And a shy person can't learn
So here goes....
When we recite Avinu Malkeinu at this time of year i.e. the Aseres Yemei Teshuvah (10 Days of Repentance between Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur), we repeat several phrases line-by-line after the shaliach tzibbur. The final five lines read as follow:
אָבִֽינוּ מַלְכֵּֽנוּ כָּתְבֵֽנוּ בְּסֵֽפֶר חַיִּים טוֹבִים - Our Father, Our King! inscribe us in the Book of the Good Life.
אָבִֽינוּ מַלְכֵּֽנוּ כָּתְבֵֽנוּ בְּסֵֽפֶר גְּאֻלָּה וִישׁוּעָה - Our Father, Our King! inscribe us in the Book of Redemption and Salvation.
אָבִֽינוּ מַלְכֵּֽנוּ כָּתְבֵֽנוּ בְּסֵֽפֶר פַּרְנָסָה וְכַלְכָּלָה - Our Father, Our King! inscribe us in the Book of Sustenance and Support.
אָבִֽינוּ מַלְכֵּֽנוּ כָּתְבֵֽנוּ בְּסֵֽפֶר זְכֻיּוֹת - Our Father, Our King! inscribe us in the Book of Merits.
אָבִֽינוּ מַלְכֵּֽנוּ כָּתְבֵֽנוּ בְּסֵֽפֶר סְלִיחָה וּמְחִילָה - Our Father, Our King! inscribe us in the Book of Forgiveness and Pardon.
So we ask Hashem that we be written in certain books so that we have a good year ahead. However, I have always been bothered by the fact that we ask for all the things we want, namely, a good life, redemption and salvation, sustenance and support, and for merits. However, we then end by asking that Hashem inscribe us into the book of forgiveness and pardon.
Would it not make sense to first ask that Hashem forgives our sins and then only ask for all the good things afterwards? Is it not like a child going shopping in a toy shop, returning with a whole bundle of things he wants and then apologising to his parent?