February 10, 2019

A Sunday Prayer

Eternal God, though we cannot see you with our eyes
or touch you with our hands,
grant us this day
a clear conviction of your reality and your power in our lives.
Let us not enter this new week
believing only in the world
as we are told to experience it—
a world of statistics, of dollars and cents,
of political expediencies and shallow entertainment.
But give us grace to understand
that we are called to a new reality—
greater and deeper and more loving—
and that this new reality is the most real and enduring of all.

Though our lives are lived in time,
help us to live for the eternal.
Though we must care for the needs of our bodies,
help us to care even more for the needs of our souls.
Though we need to deal with things material,
keep us mindful that behind them are things spiritual,
which transcend the boundaries between self and clan and nation.
In this way, make us increasingly aware
that the calling
that lies behind all other voices clamoring for our attention
is to truth and honor and meekness and helpfulness,
to a peace that passes human understanding,
and an unselfish love for you and for our neighbor.

Make us truly grateful this day
for the power you have given us to lay hold of things unseen;
for the strong sense that no flag
can claim our ultimate loyalty;
for restless hearts that are constantly seeking.
Make us grateful for the unsettling presence of your Spirit;
for the ways that human love is a reminder of your grace;
for the fullness of your glory
outpoured in the simplicity and humility of the Man of Nazareth.
As we, pilgrims of eternity, bow before you this morning, O Holy One,
let us never seek to deaden or destroy
the desire for you that disturbs our hearts.
Let us, rather, yield to its constraint and follow where it leads us.
Make us wise to see things and situations and people as you see them,
that—constantly aware of your eternal Realm—
we may have courage to face the life-changes required
when we acknowledge your call to us and your claim on our lives.
through the grace of our Jesus Christ, Sovereign of our lives. Amen.
—after John Baillie, A Diary of Private Prayer

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