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Archive for the ‘prayer’ Category

Paul’s prayer teaches me how to think, feel and pray for other Christians. In all our disappointments and hurts in relationships with one another, if it were our hearts desire to see one another as we are seen by the gospel then we would have joy in one another when we see evidences of God’s Spirit at work in us and through us. That in turn would turn our affections for one another and further motivate us to pray for one another’s love, holiness, righteousness and experience of God’s glory. If we saw one another as co-sharers in God’s grace, confident that he who began this good work in us will bring it to completion, then our relationships would be transformed.

I thank my God every time I remember you.

In all my prayers for you, I always pray with joy

because of your partnership in the gospel from the first day until now,

being confident of this, that he who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus.

It is right for me to feel this way about you, since I have you in my heart; for you share in God’s grace with me.

God can testify how I long for all of you with the affection of Christ Jesus.

And this is my prayer: that your love may abound more and more in knowledge and depth of insight,

so that you may be able to discern what is best and may be pure and blameless until the day of Christ,

filled with the fruit of righteousness that comes through Jesus Christ–to the glory and praise of God.

(Philippians 1:3-11)

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Let thy soul by faith be exercised with such thoughts and apprehensions as these:

"I am a poor, weak creature; unstable as water, I cannot excel. This corruption if too hard for me, and is at the very door of ruining my soul; and what to do I know not. My soul is become as parched ground, and an habitation of dragons. I have made promises and broken them; vows and engagements have been as a thing of nought. Many persuasions have I had that I had got the victory and should be delivered, but I am deceived; so that I plainly see, that without some eminent succour and assistance, I am lost, and shall be prevailed on to an utter relinquishment of God. But yet, though this be my state and condition, let the hands that hang down be lifted up, and the feeble knees be strengthened. Behold, the Lord Christ, that hath all fullness of grace in his heart, all fullness of power in his hand, he is able to slay all these his enemies. There is sufficient provision in him for my relief and assistance. He can take my drooping, drying soul and make me more than a conqueror. ‘Why sayest thou, O my soul, My way is hid from the Lord, and my judgement is passed over from my God? Hast thou not known, hast thou not heard, that the everlasting God, the Lord, the Creator of the ends of the earth, fainteth not, neither is weary? there is no searching of his understanding. He giveth power to the faint; and to them that have no might he increaseth strength. Even the youths shall faint and be weary, and the young men shall utterly fall: but they that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles; they shall run, and not be weary; they shall walk, and not faint" He can make the ‘dry, parched ground of my soul to become a pool, and my thirsty, barren heart as springs of water;’ yea, he can make this ‘habitation of dragons,’ this heart, so full of abominable lusts and fiery temptations, to be a place for ‘grass’ and fruit to himself".

AMEN

Source: John Owen’s Mortification of Sin in Believers, Chapter 14.

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This is a prayer for the sick or for the spiritually-distressed. It allows the possibility that suffering is a form of chastisement from God while celebrating God’s sovereignty and his goodness even through suffering.

Merciful God and Father, You give eternal hope and salvation to the living and eternal life to the dying. You alone have life and death in Your hands, and Christ alone has the keys of death and of the grave. All things are in Your power so that neither health nor sickness, good nor evil, life nor death can happen to us without Your will. We also know that by Your power and direction all things must serve our salvation. Gracious Father, we implore You to grant us the grace of Your Holy Spirit, that He may teach us truly to know our misery and to bear patiently with Your chastisements. If You, O Lord, kept a record of our sins these chastisements should have been ten thousand times more severe. We believe that they are not evidence of Your wrath but of Your fatherly love towards us, that we might not be condemned with the world.

Lord, strengthen our faith by Your Holy Spirit, so that we become more and more united with Christ our Head, since it is Your good pleasure to unite us to Him in both suffering and glory. Enable us to bear what is brought upon us by Your fatherly wisdom. We submit ourselves entirely to Your will, whether You leave us on earth or whether You take us home unto Yourself. We trust that with body and soul, both in life and in death, we belong to Christ, whose resurrection is the guarantee of our blessed resurrection.

Grant that we may experience the comfort of the forgiveness of sins through Jesus Christ. May His innocent blood wash away the dirt of our sins and may His righteousness cover our unrighteousness in Your sight. Arm us with faith and hope, so that we may overcome the assaults of Satan and not be put to shame by any fear of death. When our eyes grow dim, let Your eyes be open toward us. When You take away from us the ability to speak will You then hear the sighing of our hearts. When our hands have lost their strength, continue to support and carry us on Your everlasting arms.

Father, we commit our spirit into Your hands. Deal with us according to Your promise. Never forsake us, but always be with us, even in the hour of death.

source: The Canadian and American Reformed Church web site.

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An evening prayer

Merciful God, in whom is no darkness at all, we come before You at the end of this day. We thank You that You have given us strength for our daily work, and have guided us safely through this day. Bless what was good in our labour and conduct.

Since You ordained that man should labour during the day and rest at night, we pray You to give us peaceful and undisturbed rest so that we may be able to take up our daily task again. Command Your angels to guard us and cause Your face to shine upon us. We cast all our anxieties on You, for You take care of us.

Control our sleep and rule our hearts, in order that we may not be defiled in any way but may glorify You even in our nightly rest. Defend and protect us against all assaults of the devil and take us into Your divine protection.

We confess that we did not spend this day without grievously sinning against You. In Your mercy please cover our sins as You cover the earth in the darkness of the night.

Grant comfort and rest to all who are ill, bowed down with grief, or afflicted with spiritual distress. Your steadfast love, O Lord, endures forever. Do not abandon the works of Your hands.

All this we ask in the Name of Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

source: Canadian and American Reformed Churches http://www.canrc.org/?page=401

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Grant, Almighty God,

that as thou threatens us with severe punishment to restrain us from sin,

we may regard thy judgement, and not abuse thy long-suffering in sparing us for a time;

and also that, whenever thou chastises us, we may seriously consider that we deserve thy displeasure, as we have in various ways provoked thy wrath:

and may we not at the same time despair or be broken down,

but learn so to recomb on thy mercy as not to doubt but that there will be a seasonable end to our evils,

and that thou wilt not only mitigate the rigour of punishment as far as necessary for our comfort,

but wilt also punish our enemies, so that we may know that nothing is better for us, or more desirable, than to be chastised by thy hand, not that thou mayest destroy us, but recall us to the way of salvation, until we be at length made capable of receiving that favour which has been laid up for us in heaven, through Jesus Christ our Lord.

Amen.

Source: Calvin’s Prayer following his exposition on Zechariah 5

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IOUS prayer

 

I — Incline my heart to His testimonies (Psalm 119:36),

O — Open my eyes that I might behold the wonderful things in His Word (Psalm 119:8),

U — Unite my heart to fear His name (Psalm 86:11), and

S — Satisfy me in His steadfast love (Psalm 90:14).

 

source: John Piper

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The Lord’s Prayer

The Lord’s Prayer is a good summary of apostolic teaching.

The honour of God in the ‘Father’

the testimony of faith in the ‘name’

the offering of obedience in ‘will’

the commemoration of hope in the ‘kingdom’

the petition for life in the ‘bread’

the full acknowledgement of debts in the prayer for their ‘forgiveness’

the anxious dread of temptation in the request for ‘protection’.

Source: Tertullian (220 A.D.)

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