A Prayer on Sunday

Prayer in St Peter's Square in the RainAlmighty God, who are ever present in the world without me, in my spirit within me, and in the unseen world above me, let me carry with me through this day’s life a most real sense of your power and your glory.

O God without me, forbid that I should look today upon the work of your hands and give no thought to you the Maker. Let the heavens declare your glory to me and the hills your majesty. Let every fleeting loveliness I see speak to me of a loveliness that does not fade. Let the beauty of the earth be to me a sacrament of the beauty of holiness made manifest in Jesus Christ my Lord.

O God within me, give me grace today to recognise the stirrings of your Spirit within my soul and to listen most attentively to all that you have to say to me. Let not the noises of the world ever so confuse me that I cannot hear you speak. Suffer me never to deceive myself as to the meaning of your commands; and so let me in all things obey your will, through the grace of Jesus Christ my Lord.

O God above me, God who dwells in light unapproachable, teach me, I beseech you, that even my highest thoughts of you are but dim and distant shadowings of your transcendent glory. Teach me that if you are in nature, still more are you greater than nature. Teach me that if you are in my heart, still more are you greater than my heart. Let my soul rejoice in your mysterious greatness. Let me take refuge in the thought that you are utterly beyond me, beyond the sweep of my imagination, beyond the comprehension of my mind, your judgements being unsearchable and your ways past finding out.

O Lord, hallowed by your name. Amen.

(John Baillie, A Diary of Private Prayer, 73, adapted)


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