A Prayer In The Morning

I keep finding new gems in the 1928 Book of Common Prayer, like this one from the Family Prayer section. (Historical note: When I look online at the versions of the book from the time of Thomas Cranmer, the reformer who spearheaded the Protestant revisions of the Church of England’s liturgy, I don’t see a Family prayer section listed, so I assume it was added later.) I’ve added line breaks to this beautiful prayer of consecration to help you (and me!) focus on each item of praise or request.

Almighty God,
    who alone gavest us the breath of life,
    and alone canst keep alive in us the holy desires thou dost impart;
We beseech thee, for thy compassion's sake, to sanctify all our thoughts and endeavors;
    that we may neither begin an action without a pure intention
    nor continue it without thy blessing.
And grant that, having the eyes of the mind opened to behold things invisible and unseen,
    we may in heart be inspired by thy wisdom,
    and in work be upheld by thy strength,
    and in the end be accepted of thee as thy faithful servants;
through Jesus Christ our Saviour. Amen.

Just as God is the only One who gives and sustains physical life, He is the only One who gives and sustains holy desires in me. When I ask Him to purify my thoughts and actions – to make me holy and set me apart for Him, which is what the term “sanctify” means – He is the One who accomplishes it. He guides me to do what pleases Him; He opens my eyes to see the invisible truths behind the physical world; He gives me the wisdom and strength to serve Him faithfully. My job is to simply to surrender to Him, and as my friend John says, surrender is the hard work of the Christian life!

I'd love to hear your comments:

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