O my Father, I have moments of deep unrest – moments when I know not what to ask by reason of the very excess of my wants. I have in these hours no words for Thee, no conscious prayers for Thee. Yet all the time Thou hast accepted my unrest as a prayer. I know not what I ask. But Thou knowest what I ask, O my God. Thou knowest that because I am made in Thine image, I can find rest only in what gives rest to Thee; therefore Thou hast counted my unrest for righteousness and hast called my groaning Thy Spirit’s prayer. Amen.
Prayer is a vital part of our relationship with Jesus. It is half of the conversation that takes place in this relationship. Prayer is our constant link to the Trinity in all the fullness of God’s glory. We struggle,however, with prayer. Part of the struggle is with the question about prayer and spontaneity. Some how we wonder if prayer has to be spontaneous to be real, while others being more liturgical in their worship and lifestyle think that “a better thought out prayer” is superior to their own and so only use printed prayers.
I believe that there is great value in both. God wants to hear directly from our hearts and so spontaneous prayers is necessary. At the same time many of the prayers we have written for us by saints who have gone before express better what we often need than we actually know ourselves.
So today, second day of Advent, as snow gently blows around here in Middle Tennessee let me offer what has become a prayer that I find highly usable every day and a prayer that often expresses the very desires from my heart. It is adopted from the Book of Common Prayer.
Deliver me, Lord, from the way of sin and death.
Open my heart to your grace and truth.
Fill me with your holy and life-giving Spirit.
Keep me in the Faith and communion of your holy church.
Teach me to love others in the power of the Spirit.
Send me into the world in witness to your love.
Bring me to the fullness of your peace and glory. Amen.