Thursday, March 29, 2012

B.O.M. for March/April: The Valley of Vision

If you haven't yet picked up a copy of the book of the month, I strongly encourage you to do so. It will kindle and fuel your prayer life. It will help teach you how to pray. It will help you know what to pray.

One prayer that recently resonated deeply with me is called "The Spirit's Work." Here's a large portion of it (with some editing to update archaic language):

O God the Holy Spirit,

You who proceed from the Father and the Son,
     have mercy on me.
When you did first hover over chaos,
     order came to birth,
     beauty robed the world,
     fruitfulness sprang forth.
Move, I pray, upon my disordered heart;
Take away the infirmities of unruly desires and hateful lusts;
Lift the mists and darkness of unbelief;
Brighten my soul with the pure light of truth,
Make it fragrant as the garden of paradise,
     rich with every goodly fruit,
     beautiful with heavenly grace,
     radiant with rays of divine light.
Take of the things of Christ and show them to my soul;
Through you may I daily learn more of his love, grace, compassion, faithfulness, beauty;
Lead me to the cross and show me his wounds, the hateful nature of evil, the power of Satan;
May I see there my sins as
     the nails that transfixed him,
     the cords that bound him,
     the thorns that tore him,
     the sword that pierced him.
Help me to find in his death the reality and immensity of his love.
Open for me the wondrous volumes of truth in his, 'It is finished'.

Increase my faith in the clear knowledge of atonement achieved, expiation completed, satisfaction made, guilt done away, my debt paid, my sins forgiven, my person redeemed, my soul saved, hell vanquished, heaven opened, eternity made mine.

O Holy Spirit, deepen in me these saving lessons.
Write them upon my heart, that my walk be sin-loathing, sin-fleeing, Christ-loving;
And suffer no devil's device to beguile or deceive me.

If your heart doesn't say "Amen" to that prayer, you may want to check your pulse. Oh that the same Spirit who hovered over the primordial formlessness and void, would hover over our often disintegrated and empty hearts! If God can order and fill a universe, he certainly is able to do the same for us.

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