Monday, April 17

A prayer for today: 17p

I bless you, O God who moves the stars, for in your unfathomable love you have intended that spirit can meet with spirit and that I, a weak and erring mortal, may have this ready access to your heart.
With bitterness and true shame I acknowledge before you the uncivilized and selfish thoughts that I so often allow to enter my mind and to influence my deeds.

I confess, O God—
that often I let my mind wander down unclean and forbidden ways:
that often I deceive myself as to where my plain duty lies:
that often, by concealing my real motives, I pretend to be better than I am:
that often my honesty is only a matter of policy:
that often my affection for my friends is only a refined form of caring for myself:
that often my sparing of my enemy is due to nothing more than cowardice:
that often I do good deeds only so they be seen by others,
and shun evil ones only because I fear they may be found out.
O holy One, let the fire of your love enter my heart, and burn up all this meanness and hypocrisy, and make my heart as the heart of a little child.

Give me grace, O God, to pray with pure and sincere desire for others. Let me remember my friends with love and my enemies with forgiveness, entrusting them all, as I entrust my own soul and body, to your protecting care; through Jesus Christ. Amen.

Paraphrase of A Diary of Private Prayer by John Baillie ©1949 Charles Scribner's Sons