MY good God, prayer to You is my fortress, prayer is my friend, in prayer I forget all my misery and littleness. Cause me, therefore, to pour my soul out to You in prayer at the present time. I have known no help in times of difficulty, in shame and humiliation I found no sympathizer, but Your watching and Guardian Spirit. Desert me not now. I want You more than ever, Your assurance and Your comfort my soul craves for. My God, my tower of strength, my sweetness and peace of heart, be ever near. God of truth and righteousness, I seek justification in Your sight only. Stand in my conscience, King of holiness, give me Your word, and I will be calm though the whole world rise in rage like a surging sea. Holiness and judgment are Yours, and I humbly stand before Your throne. Crush me in Your justice if I am guilty, and let confusion overtake me. But if in Your sight I stand acquitted, what man is there that shall make me tremble? My Father, purge me from all fear and shame before You. – The Ministers Prayers Part 2
Prayer for Transformation of the Past
O LOVE unspeakable and full of glory, whose majesty is not to destroy, but to save, save me from myself.
My past relentlessly pursues me. Days that I thought dead live over again; deeds that I deemed buried meet me on the way; be You my rearward, O my God.
Fill up that which my life has left behind, undo that which my life has done amiss. Repair the places I have wasted, bind the hearts I have wounded, dry the eyes I have flooded. Make the evil I have done to work for good, so that I myself would not know it. Overrule the acts I did in malice; weave them into Your divine mosaic, that my very wrath may be made to praise You.
Take up my yesterdays into Your own golden light, and transfigure them there, that I may learn with joyful surprise how even against my will I was laboring together with You; so shall my former self find me no more. Amen.
Meditation: Atonement for past sins is every man’s duty.
If the past has already been to you one of wasted opportunities and neglected responsibilities, though it is too late to undo, let us feel that it is not too late to do with redoubled energy what yet remains to be done.
To shake off the lethargy of spiritual indifference, to renounce all unmanly and ignoble selfishness, to respond to the call of duty, to begin a life of earnest, active beneficence, to crowd our days with deeds, and, God helping us, in what remains of life to be as good and to do as much good as we can – for this at least it is not too late.
The harvest indeed is past, the summer is over and gone! Gone are the sweet days of innocence, gone the vernal time of youthful ardor, gone the sunny harvest hours of manhood’s effort and activity! But, oh, still happy you are, if when the sands of life are running out, in that supreme moment when earth and earthly things shall be passing forever from your sight, you can look back on this last period of your earthly probation with the blessed consciousness that, that at least has not been given in vain.
And may God forbid that when the last comes to the last, as we lie waiting the inevitable summons, it should be with the terrible conviction that for all the higher purposes of existence, for all the ends for which God has given us our life, our life has been a failure, a failure for which there is now no place of repentance. — John Caird
O LORD, our Heavenly Father, almighty and everlasting God, who has safely brought us to the Beginning of this Day; defend us in the same with Your Mighty Power, and grant that this Day we fall into no Sin, neither run into any Kind of Danger; but that all our Doings may be ordered by Your Governance, to do always what is righteous in Your Sight, through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen
O Righteous Lord, who hates iniquity, I your sinful creature cast myself at your feet, acknowledging that I most justly deserve to be utterly abhorred and forsaken by You; for I have drunk iniquity like water, gone on in a continued course of sin and rebellion against you, daily committed those things you forbidden and leaving undone those things you Commanded; my heart which should be a habitation for Your Holy Spirit, is become the seat of unclean thoughts, of soul and disordered affections and out of this abundance of the heart, my mouth speaks, my hands act; so that in thought, word and deed I continually transgress against you. Nay, O Lord, I have despised that goodness of Yours which should lead me to repentance, hardening my heart against all those means You have used for my amendment. Now, O Lord, what can I expect from You but judgment and fiery indignation, that is, indeed, the due reward of my sins? But, O Lord, there is mercy with you, that you may be feared; O fit me for that mercy, by giving me a deep and hearty repentance; and then according to Your goodness, let Your anger and Your wrath be turned away from me: look upon me in Your Son, my blessed Savior, and for the merit of His sufferings pardon all my sins. And, Lord, I beseech you, by the power of Your grace, so to renew and purify my heart, that I may become a new creature, utterly forsaking every evil way and living in a constant sincere universal obedience to You all the rest of my days; that, behaving myself as a good and faithful servant, I may by Your mercy at the last be received into the joy of my Lord. Grant this for Jesus Christ’s sake. Amen.
[Taken out of the whole Duty of Man.]
We thank You, Lord our God and universal Ruler, for that You have created light and darkness, and caused them to alternate to the well-being of all Your creatures. For it is Your power gives light to the earth and to them that dwell thereon, renewing day by day the wonders of creation. How manifold are Your works, O God! and You have formed them all in consummate wisdom, the earth is full of Your bounties. The origin of all things proclaims Your greatness, so that from aforetime You are praised and glorified by Your works. Lord of the Universe, let Your love always rule upon us. that we may never cease to tender our dutiful gratitude to You as the Lord of our strength, the rock of our refuge, our shield and our salvation.
Accept our humble thanks, Almighty Ruler, for the Majesty of Your handiwork and for the beautiful luminaries of the skies You have formed.
In Your all-encompassing love, O God, You have revealed Yourself to us, Your people; Your majesty and Your glory to us are clear. To our ancestors You gave precepts of life, You also extend Your mercy by making us receptive to them. All-merciful Father, inspire our hearts with affection and earnest zeal for knowledge and perception, that we may lovingly cleave to the teachings of Your law, understand them and esteem them, learn and teach them, observe and do them in affectionate devotion. Enlighten our eyes in Your law, confirm our hearts in Your precepts and let us unite, in the love of You and reverence for Your name, with all our fellowmen. In Your great and holy name we trust that You will give us with Your salvation and we will rejoice. For You are the source of all enlightenment, and You have chosen us of all races and nations to come nearest to You in the knowledge of Your being, and to proclaim You, One forever and indivisibly One. Be praised then, O God, our Lord and universal Ruler, for You have chosen us in love, to preach You and to praise You. Amen.
Book: Jewish Home Prayer Book (1887)
IN GOD’S IMAGE.
And God said, Let Us make man in Our image, after Our likeness; and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea and the fowl of the air and over the cattle, and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creeps upon the earth.. And God created man in His own image, in the image of God created He him; male and female created He them.
—Gen. 1: 26,27.
What a stupendous fact! Man created in the image of God! How few seem to grasp its significance! What light it throws on the great problems of human life! What a wide chasm it makes between man and all lower orders of created being! Here is a base fact without which there can be no true theology or anthropology. Surely here is sacred ground. Let us remove the sandals from our feet while we meditate reverently on the meaning of this marvelous truth. With bowed heads let us invoke the guidance of the Holy Spirit while we seek to understand the lesson contained in these wonderful words.
“Let us make man in our image, after Our likeness.” This is the divine counsel and purpose which lies back of the great mystery of human life and. all its pages of tragic history. It is a purpose formed deliberately and in full view of all its mighty consequences—sin, suffering, sorrow, conflict, death, the incarnation, Gethsemane, Calvary, the open Sepulcher, redemption! “God is love.” Out of all this struggle, discord and misery, then, there are to flow results which will more than vindicate the wisdom and goodness of God. Let this sweet reflection comfort our hearts until life’s conflicts shall issue in eternal peace.
“And God created man in His own image.” Is it possible for the human mind to reach the pinnacle of thought which these words suggest? Not now; but let us pause reverently before them and seek a nearer approach to their full meaning. It cannot be that in His bodily or fleshly nature man is created in God’s image, for God is spirit. The human body is not man, nor any essential part of man. The man exists when His body returns to dust whence it came. It is the condition of man’s earthly existence. It is the house of clay in which the real man dwells for the time. “What, then, is the real man which no mortal eye has ever seen? Is it not the conscious, intelligent ego, that which thinks, chooses, apprehends moral motives, discerns between right and wrong and determines what motives shall influence its action? If so, then man is created in God’s image, (1) intellectually, (2) morally, (3) volitionally. The proof of this is supplied in every man’s own consciousness, in connection with God’s written revelation of His will and character.
That man is created in God’s image in His mental constitution is evidenced by the fact that He can “think God’s thoughts after Him,” as Kepler has so finely said. God’s thoughts are manifest in all the arrangements of the material universe. Everywhere there is plan, method, adaptation, design—the manifestations of the divine mind. Man can see, appreciate and make practical use of these thoughts of God. If His mind were not in the image of God, this would not be possible. God reasons with men and communicates His will to them on the basis of this likeness. Of what use could the ten commandments be to a tribe of chattering apes, or a village of prairie dogs? God can not convey such truths to these lower orders of creation, because there is nothing in their nature to apprehend such thoughts. A man can convey thoughts to the mind of His prattling child that can by no means be conveyed to the most sagacious of beasts, because the child is in His own mental image and the beast is not. There are, of course, thoughts which we cannot communicate to the undeveloped, mind of our children, just as there are truths which God cannot reveal to the greatest intellects on earth, because they are not yet able to receive them. Likeness does not imply equality, but it does open up possibilities of limitless progress.
The proof that man’s moral nature is after the pattern of God’s, may be found in the fact that man approves the moral law of God., however much He may violate it. Nor does He wait until some future judgment for an accuser. His own conscience—God’s vice regent in the human breast, as someone has called it— the reflection of God’s moral nature within man—is His accuser. With the majesty and authority of a supreme judge, it passes sentence on us when we violate that law and approves us when we yield obedience to it. When God says, “ You shall not steal,” “You shall not bear false witness,” 44 You shall not murder,” etc., man’s moral nature approves these expressions of the eternal law of right. If man’s moral nature were unlike that of God, this would not be the case. In that event a man might violate the moral law of God while acting in perfect harmony with the moral law of His own nature. This would destroy all idea of personal accountability, and render a judgment day impossible. The basis of man’s accountability to God is the likeness of His moral nature to that of God. But if man be created in the moral image of God, marred though that image be by sin, what glorious possibilities of righteousness and holiness are open before Him, and what fearful responsibility rests on Him who debauches that nature!
That man is endowed with will, and has the power of choosing, is at once His crown of glory and His chief danger. God wills and it is done. His will is the law of the universe. When He made man in His own image, He clothed Him with the sublime and fearful prerogative of determining His own destiny—of choosing between motives. Confused with the subtle discussions of the schoolmen about “free will and necessity,” we turn to our own consciousness as a witness, and it testifies that every day and every hour, of our conscious existence, we are choosing between motives and deciding between this and that course of action. And when under the blinding influence of passion, appetite or ambition, we yield to the lower instead of the higher motive, no plausible fallacy about the necessity that controlled our action suffices to protect us against the accusations of our conscience. We feel and recognize our guilt. We had the power to choose otherwise and we know it, else there would be no consciousness of guilt. All this is assumed, too, in the provisions which God has made for man’s salvation. As sin is a matter of choice, so is salvation. God saves no man against His will. “ Choose ye this day whom ye will serve,” is His command in all times and to all peoples. Christ does not cross the threshold of man’s volition uninvited. “Behold, I stand at the door and knock. If any man hear my voice and open the door, I will come in to Him, and will sup with Him and He with me.” Rev. 3:21
Here, then, is the solution of the dark problem of the origin of sin, so far as it is given us to know it. It is the abuse of freedom —of the power of choice. Here, too, is the great underlying reason of the incarnation and of the cross. The world must have a more perfect representation of God than the sinning race exhibited. Christ came as “the effulgence of His glory and the very image of His substance.” Heb 1:3 Man, a moral being, and a free, self-determining agent, must be won to God by moral motives. The stubborn will must be conquered by supreme love. Hence Gethsemane and Calvary. Why did God not save man by His naked omnipotence, without the awful tragedy of the cross? Because God created man in His own image, and such a being must be wooed and won by love, not driven by force.
In the light of these truths I can answer the question asked by David, who, on surveying the magnitude of the material universe, was led to inquire,
“ What is man that You are mindful of Him, And the Son of man that You visit Him?” Ps 8:4
What is He? He is God’s child—in His own image. That is why He is mindful of Him, and why He has visited Him in the person of Jesus Christ. My own parental heart teaches me why God would spare no effort to save His lost and erring children. O how this magnifies the cross and honors man!
O my soul, consider well Your high origin, the image which You wear, and weigh the responsibilities which come with such high endowments! Here, in the hush of this solemn stillness, alone with God, let me hear Your loving voice, dear Savior, and open the door of my heart and let You in, that I may sup with You and You with me!
Book: Alone with God
Author: Br. James H. Garrison
Publisher: St. Louis: Christian Publishing Company 1891
Almighty God, our most gracious heavenly Father, when I consider with what powers and capacities You endowed Your creature, man, and for what high and holy service You have qualified Him, I am filled with shame and confusion at the remembrance of all my sins and short-comings. I confess before You, my transgressions, and all my faults and frailties, and beseech You, in the name of Your well- beloved Son, to grant me Your pardoning mercy and sustaining grace. I thank You for all my bodily and mental faculties, and especially for that moral nature which most allies me to You, and which I have so much abused. I bless Your holy name that You pity us, in our fallen condition, and send us Your only begotten Son, full of grace and truth, through whom we regain fellowship with You. Lord have our sinful nature renewed, and enter into Your most blessed service. O God, be pleased to so quicken me by Your Spirit, and uphold me, by Your right hand, that I may fill the purpose for which You have created me. Help me to use diligently all the means of grace which You have provided, and so grow continually both in grace and in the knowledge of the truth. Enable me to see the folly and the emptiness of all earthly allurements which would draw me away from You. Help me to understand more fully that, created as I am in Your image, You alone can satisfy the needs of my soul. May this thought of the dignity and worth of a human soul not only lead me to more earnest efforts for my own salvation, but may it give me far greater concern for the salvation of others. O You blessed Savior, who stooped from heaven to earth, and drank the bitter cup of death, for sinful and lost humanity, infuse me with more of Your spirit, that I may be willing to enter into the fellowship of Your sufferings and do all in my power for the salvation of my fellow-men! And finally, O Father, when we have finished the work You have given us to do, and it seems good to You to call us home, give us, we beseech You, an abundant entrance into Your everlasting kingdom through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen!
Book: Alone with God
Author: Br. James H. Garrison
Publisher: St. Louis: Christian Publishing Company 1891
O God who hears prayer, bend low Your ear to hear the faintest whisper of one of the weakest of Your children. I come to You, O loving Father, because You have bid me come, and because I feel my need of You. You, O God, You alone can supply my needs. I am unworthy of the least of Your mercies, but I come in the name of Jesus, and beseech You, for His dear sake, to hear and answer my prayer, and to accept my thanksgiving and praise, which I offer in His name.
I thank You, most gracious Father, that You have called me into fellowship with You and with Your Son, Jesus Christ, our Savior. I thank You for a place in Your family, and the privilege of calling You Father, and feeling that You care for me, even me.
Now, I ask You, to grant that I may hunger and thirst after righteousness; that I may seek daily to feed on the divine manna which came down from heaven. O that my soul may be watered with the dew’s of Your salvation! As You nourish all the living things of nature and cause them to grow, so, O Lord, will You nourish this soul of mine which You have created. Lord stir up within me new thoughts of duty and new desires of holiness. Cause me to delight in Your word, in Your house, in the communion of saints, in the fellowship of Christian work, and in prayer. May I learn to love and to look forward to these precious moments of communion with You, where I can find the grace and strength for my daily need.
In the plenitude of Your mercy, O Father, forgive my past sins and strengthen me with might by Your Spirit in the inner man, that I may overcome all my evil inclinations and triumph over every evil habit. So feeding on Your word, meditating on Your goodness, and communing with You, may I grow up into the image of Him who is our living head, even Jesus Christ. And this I ask for His name’s sake. Amen!
Book: Alone with God
Author: Br. James H. Garrison
Publisher: St. Louis: Christian Publishing Company 1891
O LORD, open my lips, and my mouth shall declare Your praise.
Lord, hear my prayer, and let my cry come to You.
In the Name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost
O God, make speed to save us: O Lord, make haste to help us
Our Father who art in heaven, Hallowed be Your name. Your kingdom come. Your will be done on earth, as it is in Heaven. Give us this day our daily bread, and forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass against us. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil.
O God, whose mercies fail not, but are new every morning, pardon the sins that I have committed against You, in thought, word, and deed; make me to be sorry for them with the godly sorrow that works repentance unto salvation; put far from me all evil ways and works; save me from the enemy of my soul; and grant me Your peace all the days of my life; through our only Savior and Redeemer, Jesus Christ.
O Lord, I give thanks to You, for You have kept me in the past night from all evils, bodily and spiritual; and I beseech You for Your mercies’ sake, to raise me up at the Last Day to life everlasting. Give me grace, now in the time of this mortal life, to cast off the works of darkness, and to walk as a child of the light; and do You preserve me this day from all sin, from all perils and dangers, for Jesus Christ’s sake.
I commend to You, 0 Lord, my soul and my body, my thoughts, words, and works, my life and my death: the Church and my pastor, my parents and relations, [here name them, and any for whom you wish to pray,’] and all the world.
Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Ghost. Amen
If you have time, read some verses of the Bible, or a Psalm from the Psalter, or a Hymn. But never omit to pray
CHRIST JESUS, my Refuge, my Lord, I believe and hope in You, and with my whole heart I love You. Whom have I in heaven but You? There is nothing on earth that I desire in comparison of You. What shall I desire? What shall I fear? I know not my going out, or my coming in; but You know. Do with me what pleases You. My times are in Your hands. In death, or in life, I will lift up mine eyes to You. To whom shall I look but unto You, O God? I will wait in silence for Your salvation ; and I beg this of You, that I may love You more and more. O Blessed Jesus, Who is with the Father I trust in You! –– Rev. W. E. Heygate
Behold, O my God, I am the man who went down to Jericho and fell among thieves; sorely have they wounded me and left me lying half-dead. Come, Lord, You faithful Helper, raise me up and heal me.
I have sinned heavily in my whole conduct, and done evil in Your sight; I have not exercised myself in the knowledge of You; I have been unthankful for Your many benefits, and have not praised Your name rightly. Often and in many ways have I abstained from uttering Your truths, and when You have stood and knocked at the door of my heart I have been slothful, and have not welcomed You as I ought. This body, which fades like a shadow, and shall be the food of worms, I have cherished too much; I have defiled my lips with unseemly words, and I have been negligent and careless about Your wholesome Word. I have not ever and always turned away my eyes from beholding vanity, nor kept my ears from listening to unprofitable things. Many a time my hands have not served my neighbor in his need, while my feet were swift to evil. Need I say more, my God? From the crown of my head to the sole of my feet there is no health in me.
Ah! my Lord Jesus, have You not died for me on the Cross, and redeemed me, my soul must have perished forever; but now I am a partaker, O merciful Lord, in Your great salvation. Do not reject me, my Savior, for I among those whom You have so dearly purchased with Your precious blood. Behold, I am a wandering sheep, seek me, You good Shepherd, and bear me home to Your fold, according to Your promise. You have promised, to be my Helper. I believe in You, Sweet Jesus. For it is written that whenever a poor sinner shall sigh unto You You will hearken unto him. Now see how humbly I mourn and acknowledge my sins, which are ever before me. In truth, I am not worthy to be called Your son, yet make me, my Savior, to hear joy and gladness, and not to turn Your face from me.
O You Son of the Living God, Only Begotten of Your Father before all worlds! Blessed are those who love You and desire naught else; blessed are those who daily remember You and keep Your ways unto their life’s end. O Holy Bread of Heaven, how rich and bounteous are You; how overflowing are Your gifts! For You exclude no man unless it be that he despises You and refuses to come to You. Is anyone young and small, let him come boldly to You and eat, and he will grow and increase; he will put away his childish mind, and walk in the paths of true wisdom. Is any yet weak, let him hasten to You and eat and he shall soon wax strong. Is any sick, he shall be relieved. Is any dead in sins, let him but hearken to You and he shall attain everlasting life. And though one be strong and full grown, yet will he perceive that he is still in need of many things, and in You will he find abundantly that whereby he may daily increase in them. None can live a moment without You, for it is You alone who give life to all creatures.
O God, the joy and consolation of my heart, my soul is glad in You, and my spirit has a desire for You; for all who turn away from You must pine forever. O You true and invisible Light which never can be quenched, behold me sitting like a poor blind man beside the way, and crying unto You, “ Jesus, You Son of David, have mercy upon me, open the eyes of my soul, that I may see You! Lord, be merciful to me, a sinner. You are my Help and my Confidence, oh lead me unto eternal salvation! Lord, You are my physician, heal me! I am naked, and suffer cold, O You rich Lord, cover me with the mantle of Your righteousness. My soul hungers in this desert. O Lord, the true Food, quicken my heart. My soul is thirsty. Lord, You are the true healing Spring, water and refresh my spirit with Your wholesome comfort. I have come into the deep mire, and my strength fails me; I am far out on the seas, and the floods threaten to swallow me up. I have cried till I am weary and hoarse, and the waters of death are coming into my very soul. Save me, O Lord, my Shield, my Deliverer, my Comfort, my Refuge, my Strength, my King and my God, for Your mercies’ sake. Amen
|St. Jerome 329-420 – A Father of the Latin Church, born in Dalmatia, died at Bethlehem. His Latin version of the Old Testament, from the original language, was the foundation of the Vulgate|
COME sound His praise abroad,
And hymns of glory sing:
Jehovah is the sovereign God,
The universal King.
He formed the deeps unknown;
He gave the seas their bound;
The watery worlds are all His own,
And all the solid ground.
Come, worship at His throne,
Come, bow before the Lord;
We are His works, and not our own,
He formed us by His word.
Today attend His voice,
Nor dare provoke His rod;
Come, like the people of His choice,
And own your gracious God.
O Lord our God, You are very great, You are clothed with honor and majesty. How manifold are Your works, in wisdom and goodness have You made them all. The heavens are Yours, the earth also is Yours; as for the world and the fullness thereof You have founded them. In Your hands is the soul of every living thing, and the breath of all mankind. You open Your hand, they are filled with good. You hide Your face, they are troubled: You take away their breath, they die and return to their dust.
Our Father and God, we thank You for our creation and preservation: it is in You we live, and move, and have our being. We thank You that You have not made us as the beasts that perish, but that there is a spirit in man, and the inspiration of the Almighty gives him understanding. We bless You that You have made us in Your own image, with faculties capable, in some degree, of appreciating Your power, and loving Your excellence.
Inspire our hearts with gratitude for the opportunities which we enjoy of acquiring an education; and grant that while we are gaining that knowledge which will fit us for usefulness in the world, we may obtain that higher and better knowledge which makes us wise to salvation, and shall fit us for eternity. Bless the young in their studies: may the truths of science and literature elevate their minds to the great source of all power and goodness —from the contemplation of the created may they rise to the Creator, and come to know You the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom You have sent.
Your goodness preserved us during the past night, watch over us this day, and by Your power defend us. In firm reliance on Your providence may we ever be able to exclaim, Alleluia, for the Lord God Omnipotent reigns. And, at last, may we be saved with the power of an endless life. Amen! – Manual of Devotions by N. C. Brooks
Blessed are you, Sovereign God,
our light and our salvation,
to you be glory and praise for ever.
Now, as darkness is falling,
wash away our transgressions,
cleanse us by your refining fire
and make us temples of your Holy Spirit.
By the light of Christ,
dispel the darkness of our hearts
and make us ready to enter your kingdom,
where songs of praise for ever sound.
Blessed be God, Father, Son and Holy Spirit.
Book of Common Prayer
“My God shall supply all your need according to his riches in glory by Christ Jesus.”–PHIL. 4:19
O GOD, my Heavenly Father, who has permitted me to see the light and to enjoy the comforts of a new day, I bless You for the liberty of access into Your presence. Bend Your heavens and come down; fill my heart with Your love, as I draw near to the footstool of Your Throne. I thank You for Your gracious assurance that these Gates of Prayer lead to an abounding treasury of spiritual blessing, out of which all my need shall be supplied.
In Jesus, my adorable Redeemer, infinite fullness dwells; and out of His fullness —the riches of Your glory in Him —You are willing to impart even grace for grace. You have supplied all my need in the past. You have been a bountiful, and a wise Provider; presenting me with the blessings of Your goodness, and giving help from trouble, when vain was the help of man. I look to You for guidance and direction in the future. That future is veiled and hidden but it is in Your better keeping. I would say, in simple confiding faith, “Undertake for me.” Hitherto have You been true to Your unfailing promise “As Your day is, so shall Your strength be;” and over every coming need and exigency I may well write “Jehovah Jireh,” “The Lord will provide.”
Supply that need this day. If called to do battle with evil, let me go forth in Your might, prepared for the conflict. Strengthen me with Your Good Spirit: fortify me against every temptation. In the extremity of my own weakness, may I lean on Your Almighty arm. You hold me up, and I shall be safe. Preserve me from the world’s insinuating, seductive power, and from the treachery and deceitfulness of my own evil heart. Order my steps in Your word, and let no iniquity have dominion over me.
In the discharge of duty, may it be my effort and endeavor to subordinate the secular to the sacred. Keep me ever roused from the low dream of earth, to see, as in the patriarch’s dream, the ladder of God. May Your providence’s be as angels traveling up and down that ladder, and beckoning me nearer to You.” Keep me from whatever would be detrimental to my spiritual interests: from all avarice and selfishness; from all malice and uncharitableness; from all indolence and sloth; from putting off till tomorrow what can be best done, and may only be done, today. If You have given me of this world’s goods, may I seek to be a generous almoner of Your bounties. If silver and gold I have none, may I give You the consecration of the heart, and the answer of the life; knowing that You accept according to that a man has, not according to what he has not. Forbid that my talent, be what it may, should be hid in the earth. May I ever listen to the prompting “How much You owe Your Lord?” and with a quickened sense of my responsibilities to You the Great Creditor, may I be diligent, that I may be found of You in peace, without spot, and blameless.
Supply the need of those whom I love. Wherever my friends are, O You ever-present God, protect and defend them by Your mighty power. If You send them prosperity, keep them from being intoxicated with it: if You send adversity, keep them from being unduly depressed by it. Enrich them with the blessings of Your covenant grace. May we all be bound up together, on the great reaping day of Judgment, in the same bundle of life.
Supply the need of those who are in sorrow. When human cisterns are emptied and human props removed, may they know You as the Portion that cannot be taken from them. May they honor You by being dumb in the midst of perplexing dealings —recognizing these as the ministers of Your will, sent on a mission of wisdom and mercy, and that while they are only planning for time, You are planning for Eternity. May they trust Your sure word of promise, that though now they may see through a glass darkly, —when death shall have rent with his wing the obstructing cloud, in Your light they shall see light. May the Holy Spirit, the Comforter, direct their hearts into the love of God, and into the patient waiting for Christ.
Bless the nations of the earth. Hasten the day when the nameless wrongs of a now groaning and travailing creation shall be redressed when all heathen shrines shall be demolished; when will-worship and superstition shall cease. Turn the world’s sighing’s into songs of gladness. Cause its sinful unbelief, the lust and tyranny of passion, the twin curse of slavery and war, to yield to the benign scepter of the Prince of Peace. Increase the ministry of holy lives, and loving deeds. Purify Your churches more and more. Stimulate them to greater energy in Your service. As witnesses for You may they seek with augmented and ever increasing fidelity to show forth the Word of life: and may Your faithful ministers enjoy at last the blessed testimony, that they have not run in vain, neither labored in vain.
Listen to these my humble prayers, and when You hear forgive and grant me an answer in peace for the Redeemer’s sake. Amen.
The Gates of Prayer
By John Ross MacDuff
Ο Lord, be our protection, for You are our redemption. Direct our minds by Your gracious Presence, and watch over our paths with guiding love; that among the snares which lie hidden in the path in which we walk, we may so pass onward with hearts fixed on You, that by the journey of faith we may come to be where You would have us; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen (Mozarabic Liturgy, A.D. 700.)
PRAISED be God, Almighty Ruler, who makes the day bright with Your sunshine, and the night with the beams of heavenly fires; who has led us through the hours of daylight and has brought us to the quiet hour Listen now to our prayers, and the prayers of all Your people, and forgive us all, both our conscious and unconscious transgressions. Accept our prayers and pour out upon us who are Your heritage, the fullness of Your mercy and Your compassion. Protect us by Your holy angels; clothe us with the armor of righteousness; shield us with Your truth; watch over us with Your power; save us from all calamity, and from the snares of our adversaries; and give us grace to pass this day and all the days of our life, blameless, holy, peaceful, free from sin, terror, and offense. For with You is mercy and plenteous redemption, O Lord Jesus Christ, our Lord and God, and to You we bring our thanks and praise.
O FATHER of Lights, how much cause have we to thank You for the many benefits which You have showered today on us and ours, on all Your people, yea, on the whole world! Every blessing You have given is a fresh testimony to Your overflowing love towards us, who are so far beneath You. Your gifts, O God, are one with Your love, as the warmth is with the light. Therefore we love You, the Giver, and also the gifts which are the instances of Your love; and our lips praise You. O that every complaint of ours, every cry of impatience, might be changed into a song of thankfulness; for even when You tarry with Your help, yet is this very delay a true kindness, teaching us to pray, to seek, to knock more earnestly, and to wait in patience upon Your all-wise Providence. So now this day we ask Your presence among us, O Lord Jesus; when our bodies sleep may our souls rest in You; to Your loving heart, O great High Priest, we commend ourselves and all whom we love, our friends and also our foes; and most especially those who have asked us to remember them in our weak intercessions. Plead for them and for us evermore. Amen. Stark 1756.
Holy Almighty God,I, a poor sinner have now arisen. On the sacred cross, You, the real and patient lamb of sacrifice, did endure for me the most painful death and did redeem me with Your crimson blood from all my sins and from death, satan and hell. O Lord govern my heart by Your Holy Spirit, refresh it with the heavenly dew of Your grace, keep me this day with Your divine love, and hide me, body and soul, in Your holy wounds; cleanse me from all my sins, preserve me in all good works, and guide me out of this veil of tears into Your eternal joy and glory, In the Name of our most faithful Savior, Jesus Christ, my only comfort, hope and life. Amen.
Book: The Abridged Treasury of Prayers
An Epitome from the Larger “Gebets-Schatz” Published by Concordia Publishing House, St. Louis, Mo.
Publisher: American Lutheran Publication Board, Pittsburgh, PA. 1906
Edited by Karrol 2016
O GOD the Father, of Heaven: have mercy upon us, miserable sinners.
O God the Son, Redeemer of the world: have mercy upon us, miserable sinners.
O God the Holy Ghost, proceeding from the Father and the Son: have mercy upon us, miserable sinners.
O Holy, Blessed, and Glorious Trinity, three persons and one God: have mercy upon us, miserable sinners.
Remember not, Precious Lord, our offenses; neither deal with us according to our sins; spare us, good Lord, Spare Your people, whom You have redeemed with Your most precious blood: after the multitude of Your great mercies, Spare us, good Lord.
From all evil, especially from the evil of sin; from the crafts and assaults of the devil; from Your wrath, and from everlasting damnation, Good Lord, deliver us.
From all blindness of heart; from pride, self-conceit, and hypocrisy; from envy, hatred, and malice, and all uncharitableness, Good Lord, deliver us.
By the mystery of Your holy Incarnation; by Your cross and passion; by Your precious death and burial; by Your glorious resurrection and ascension; and by the coming of the Holy Ghost, Good Lord, deliver us.
In all the times of our tribulation; in all the times of our wealth; in the hour of death, and in the day of Judgment, Good Lord, deliver us.
We pray to You, Almighty God, for future mercies, let us not forget to acknowledge those which we have already received. We bless You for our creation; we bless You for preserving us till now; we bless You for all Your goodness towards us; but, above all, we bless You for Your great love in sending Your Son Jesus Christ into the world, to die for our sins, and to rise again for our justification. We beseech You to make us so sensible of Your mercies, that our hearts may be truly thankful; and that we may praise You, not only with our lips, but in our lives, by giving up ourselves to Your service; and by walking before You in holiness and righteousness all our days, through Jesus Christ, our Lord, to whom with You, and the Holy Ghost, be all honor and glory, world without end. Amen. – A Selection of Prayers for Families by Edward Jones
O heavenly Father, you have filled the world with beauty: Open our eyes to behold your gracious hand in all your works; that, rejoicing in your whole creation, we may learn to serve you with gladness; for the sake of him through whom all things were made, your Son Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
For All Sorts and Conditions
O God, the creator and preserver of all mankind, we pray to you for all sorts and conditions of people; that you would be pleased to make your ways known to them, your saving health to all nations. More especially we pray for your holy Church universal; that it may be so guided and governed by your good Spirit, that all who profess and call themselves Christians may be led into the way of truth, and hold the faith in unity of spirit, in the bond of peace, and in righteousness of life. Finally, we commend to your fatherly goodness all those who are in any ways afflicted or distressed, in mind, body, or estate; [especially those for whom our prayers are desired]; that it may please you to comfort and relieve them according to their several necessities, giving them patience under their sufferings, and a happy issue out of all their afflictions. And this we beg for Jesus Christ’s sake. Amen
For the Human Family
O God, you made us in your own image and redeemed us through Jesus your Son: Look with compassion on the whole human family; take away the arrogance and hatred which infect our hearts; break down the walls that separate us; unite us in bonds of love; and work through our struggle and confusion to accomplish your purposes on earth; that, in your good time, all nations and races may serve you in harmony around your heavenly throne; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
Eternal God, in whose perfect kingdom no sword is drawn but the sword of righteousness, no strength known but the strength of love: So mightily spread abroad your Spirit, that all peoples may be gathered under the banner of the Prince of Peace, as children of one Father; to whom be dominion and glory, now and for ever. Amen.
From the Book of Common Prayer
O LORD, the great Almighty God, You art the giver of life and strength, and of all grace all goodness; without whom we can do nothing; and through whose gracious assistance it is, that we are enabled to do all things belonging to Your service and our duty. We humbly pray, that You will be graciously present with us, and powerfully assist us this day. Direct and quicken us in all the ways and duties of Your holy service. Lord forgive our iniquities, that separate us between You and our souls; and remember not the sins against us, which may justly provoke You to hide Your face from us. But according to Your mercy, remember us, O Lord, and accept us, and our imperfect services, at the hands, and for the sake of Jesus Christ.
O leave us not to the dullness and hardness, the vanity and deceitfulness of our own depraved hearts but show the power of Your heavenly grace, in working mightily upon these hearts of ours: to bring and keep them in such a holy frame, that we may be fit to attend upon You, and perform more faithful and appropriate service to You and enjoy more of that heavenly communion with You, which You have made us capable of; and which our souls will be forever restless without.
O let us not serve You in formality and hypocrisy, making any duties of course the cover of a vain licentious life. But let our hearts and souls, and all that is within us, be taken up in a reverent, faithful and affectionate attendance upon You. Nor let us serve You out of duty, only because we must; but with all readiness and gladness, and love and delight. Making Your pleasure to be ours, and the daily service of our Lord, the joy and solace of our souls. O help us so to sanctify this day, that Your day may be a means to promote the sanctification of our souls. Let us bestow ourselves in exercises benefitting the holy season; and not profane it to any vain and vicious purposes. But on the Lord’s day may we abound in the work of the Lord; and not do our own works, nor find our own pleasure, nor speak our own words, in the day which You have hallowed for Yourself. Let us rest from all our sinful ways, as well as from our continuous labors; and so delight ourselves in You. O Lord, give us pure hearts, and bless to us Your word, O gracious Father. Give to us all the means of grace, which through Your favor we enjoy, that we may not use them in vain, nor to our hurt: but for the informing of our minds, the reforming of our lives, and the saving of our souls; still growing in grace, and in the knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ; till we attain to be such as Your holy word requires, in all holy conversation and godliness.
Great peace have they that love Your law. O Lord, increase our love of Your word, which the angels desire to look into. Make our souls pliable and submissive, to be turned and ruled by it, till we become in all things agreeable to it.
Bless us, our Father, and command a blessing upon all our pious designs and performances this day: and bless Your servants whom You have appointed to break the bread of life to our souls, that they may speak Your word and give to everyone their portion in due season. And that Your word, which they deliver, may be to our conviction, edification and comfort, and the savor of life to our souls. O You that has the key of David, and opens and no man shuts, You that speaks to the heart, and gives the increase, open our understandings to receive Your truth, both in the light, and in the love of it. And set it home so powerfully in our hearts that it may take root deep in our souls, make the fruits of Your Spirit be seen in our lives. Let us not be forgetful hearers but faithful doers of Your word.
And grant, O God, that our services this day be such, as may tend to our advantage and in the great day of Your appearing and that we may so hallow these Sabbaths on earth, that hereafter we may be attend the joyful celebration of the eternal life in Your kingdom of heaven: therewith all the church triumphant, to magnify Your glorious name, and to enjoy Your love, and sing Your praise forever. For the addition of this Sabbath to all the rest, for the benefit of Your word, and the ordinances of Your worship, and all the means of grace, and hopes of Your eternal glory, to You, the God of all grace, be the praise, and honor, and glory rendered by us, and by all .’ thine, from this time forth, and fοrever. AMEN.
— A collection of Family Prayers and Devotions
O God, whose name alone is Jehovah. You are the Most High over all the earth; and You have set Your glory above the heavens. All Your works praise You, Ο Lord, and Your saints bless You. You are our father’s God, and we will exalt You. You are our own God, and early will we seek You, for in Your favor is life.
Open our lips, and our mouth shall show forth Your praise. You have made us, and not We ourselves. Yours eye see our substance and in Your book our names are written. You have taught us more than the beasts of the field, and made us wiser than the fowls of the air. There is a spirit in man, and the inspiration of the Almighty gives him understanding. Your providence has watched over us from the womb, supplied all our wants, arranged all our affairs, and determined the boundaries of our habitation.
The lines have fallen to us in pleasant places, yea, we have a good heritage. We live in a land of vision. How superior are our advantages to those of Your ancient people, the Jews. The SUN OF RIGHTEOUSNESS, which was below the horizon to them, has risen upon us with healing in His wings; and we are all the children of the day. Let us not, therefore, sleep, as do others; but while we have the light, may we walk in the light, lest darkness come upon us.
May we ever be impressed with the conviction that where much is given, much will be required and that our greatest danger results from our distinguishing advantages— our Sabbaths; our sanctuaries; the Scriptures of truth; the preaching of the gospel; and all the other means of grace.
What more could have been done for us than You have done? and yet how little fruit have we brought forth. We deserve to be cut down as encumberers of the ground, and cast into the fire. Yet, Ο Lord, spare us, for the sake of Your Son, our Savior; and lengthen out our day of grace. Convict us of sin, of righteousness, and of a judgment to come. May we see our danger, and our refuge too, and be led to believe on the Lord Jesus Christ; and may we find Him to be precious to our souls, the CHIEF AMONG TEN THOUSAND, AND THE ONE ALTOGETHER LOVELY.
May we be made the partakers of Christ, and not only of His righteousness, but of His Spirit. That we may be, not only pardoned, but renewed; and not only have a title to heaven, but a meetness for it. No longer alienated from the life of God, may our meditations of You be sweet, and may we draw near to You with exceeding joy. May we trust in Your promises, and rely on Your constant protection and care. May we be devoted to Your service, and find in it perfect freedom. May we delight ourselves in Your commandments, and forget not Your word, that we may not sin against You.
With afflictions weaned from the world, and with evidences bright for heaven, all the days of our appointed time may we wait till our change comes: may we die, supported by the consolations of the gospel, and surrounded with the glory of God; and have an entrance ministered to us abundantly, into the everlasting kingdom of our Lord and Savior.
Prepare us for our passage, as well as for our end. While we are here, may we fulfil the duties and bear with firmness, the trials of our respective stations; may we glorify our Father, who is in heaven; and serve our generation according to His will.
Continue Your goodness to us as a family. Adapt Your mercies to each of our wants. May those of us who hope in You that we have passed from death to life, walk humbly with God and grow in grace, and may those who are still impenitent, be convinced of sin and become the devoted servants of Christ. Remember our absent friends. Let Your ministers enjoy Your presence; and Your churches be filled with Your glory. Let this nation be under Your care. Ever protect the seat of learning and science; of civil and religious freedom; of social blessedness; and of gospel privileges; shall they be the source of usefulness to the ends of the earth.
May Ethiopia stretch forth her hands to God. And may all nations whom You have made, come and worship before You. For Yours, Ο God, is the power; and Yours shall be the glory, through our Lord and Savior. AMEN. — Rev. Emerson Davis
THE heavens declare Your glory, Ο God, and the raiment shows Your handy work. Day to day utters speech, and night to night shows knowledge. There is no speech nor language, where Your voice is not heard. We behold displays of Your wisdom, power and goodness in all Your works, from the largest to the least.
You have magnified Your word above all Your name; and we can never be sufficiently thankful for the revelation of Your will in the Scriptures of truth. We bless You that this sacred volume has been preserved, and translated, and published, and multiplied, so that we all have it in our possession, and can read in our own tongue Your wonderful works O God. Here we see not only Your greatness, but Your grace; and not only Your pity, but Your rectitude; we see mercy and truth meeting together, righteousness and peace embracing each other. Here You have shined in our hearts, to give us the knowledge of Your glory in the face of Jesus Christ.
For in Christ You have reconciled the world to Yourself, not imputing their trespasses to them. You have made Jesus to be sin for us, Jesus who knew no sin. You gave us Your Son that we might be made the righteousness of God in Him. You have raised Him from the dead, and given Him glory, that our faith and hope may be in You, O God. In view of this infinite kindness, may we reign all our unworthy and suspicious thoughts; and placing our confidence in You, return and say Lord, Ι am Yours, save me. Look upon me, and be merciful to me, as You used to do to those that love Your name.
We ask not to be enrolled among the rich and the great of this world, but to be numbered‚ with those who are blessed with all spiritual blessings in heavenly places in Christ. The graves are ready for us; and we shall soon be in a state, that will render it a matter of indifference to us whether we have filled a cottage or a palace — but it ‚will be eternally important to us, that we have been justified by Your grace, and sanctified by Your Spirit, and adopted into Your family. May we, therefore, be wise to salvation: and make it our present, our supreme, our persevering concern, tο obtain those blessings which are spiritual in their nature; eternal in their continuance; satisfying in their possession; and which unerringly indicate that we are the friends of God.
Preserve us from a false estimate of the whole of our character, or any part of it. May we regard our principles as well as our conduct; our motives as well as our actions. May we never mistake the excitement of our passions for the renewing of the Holy Ghost. May we never judge our religion by occasional impressions and impulses; but by our constant and prevailing disposition. May our heart be right with God, and our life such as becomes the gospel.
May we maintain a supreme regard for one another and always strive for a better world. May we feel and confess ourselves to be only strangers and pilgrims in this life. How often by bodily infirmities and pains, and by dissatisfaction’s growing out of every enjoyment —how often have we been taught that this is not our rest. Afford us, we pray, all the assistance we need while passing through the scenes of life. Give us, in large abundance, the supply of the spirit of Jesus Christ, that we may be prepared for every duty: that we may love You for all our mercies; that we may submit to You in every trial. May we trust You when we walk in darkness, and have no light; and amidst all the changes of the present, and the uncertainties of the future, may our minds be kept in perfect peace, being stayed upon God.
Have You not made with us an everlasting covenant, ordered in all things and sure? The very hairs of our head—are they not all numbered? Are not all Your ways mercy and truth? Lord, we believe, help our unbelief. And now to Him that is able to keep us from falling, and to present us faultless before the presence of His glory with exceeding joy: to the only wise God our Savior, be glory and majesty, dominion and power, both now and forever. AMEN. — Rev. Emerson Davis
O GOD, Who is holy, and rest in the holy places, Who is hymned by the Seraphim, glorified by the Cherubim, and adored by all the heavenly powers, Who has vouchsafed Your care over Your humble and unworthy servants. We come to worship and praise You. Receive, Ο Lord, we beseech You, our fervent thanksgiving, and grant that we may serve You in holiness and peace all the days of our life. Blessed are You, Ο Lord God of our fathers, You are to be praised and exalted above all forever. Blessed be Your glorious and holy Name. You, Ο Lord, are the greatness and the power, and the glory, and the victory, and the majesty, for all that is in the heaven and in the earth is Thine. Thine is the kingdom, Ο Lord, and Thou is exalted as Head above all. Yours. We will sing unto the Lord a new song. Ο Lord, You are great and glorious, wonderful in strength and invincible. Let all creatures serve You, for You spoke and they were made. You sent forth Your Spirit and they were created. Ο God, You are worthy to be praised with all pure and holy praise, therefore let Your saints praise You with all Your creatures, and let all Your angels and Your elect praise You forever. Let our souls bless You God, the great King, for worthy is the Lamb that was slain to receive power and riches, and wisdom, and strength, and honor, and glory, and blessing, both now and evermore. Amen.
(St. Chrysostom, A.D. 347.)
Heavenly Father we come to You this morning to praise and worship You. We thank You for the peaceful rest we have had this past night and now that the dawn breaks we are anxiously awaiting the day You have prepared for us. Lord God Almighty we know that You are our strength, our hope, our refuge, our counselor, our guide, our everything. We long for more of You each day. We continually seek Your face and desire that Your will be done on earth as it is in heaven. God watch over our coming and going today that we may not sin against You. Bless our family and relations. May we be a light to the world and a source of comfort to the afflicted. God give us the word’s to say to those that need encouragement. May our business dealings be just and true. Lord our hearts desire is to walk in a manner worthy of our calling as Christians, do not let that desire be thwarted. Now we dedicate this day to You in the name of Jesus Christ our Savior. Amen —Karrol
O GIVE thanks unto the Lord; for He is good: because His mercy endures forever.
The Lord is on my side; I will not fear: what can man do to me?
The Lord is my strength and song, and has become my salvation.
The voice of rejoicing and salvation is in the tabernacles of the righteous:
The right hand of the Lord does all things wonderfully.
I shall not die, but live, and declare the works of the Lord.
Open to me the gates of righteousness: I will go into them, and I will praise the Lord.
COME, my soul, you must be waking!
Now is breaking
O’er the earth another day.
Come to Him who made this splendor;
See You render
All your feeble strength can pay.
Gladly hail the sun returning;
Be the Incense of Your powers:
For the night is safely ended, —
God has tended
With His care your helpless hours.
Pray that He may prosper ever
When your aim is good and true;
But that He may ever thwart you,
And convert you,
When evil you would pursue.
O GOD, mercifully accept the prayers of Your children throughout the world, which shall this day be offered at the footstool of Your throne: give us grace to prepare our hearts, that we may serve You with reverence and godly fear: grant us a true apprehension of Your divine majesty, and a deep sense of our unworthiness; that so, approaching Your presence with lowliness and devotion, we may present an offering acceptable to You, and in the spirit of Him who has taught us how to pray. Amen. — Rush Rees Shippen