Belonging to Jesus

This prayer is from Valley of Vision (p. 102-103). I’ve prayed this and meditated on this text this week.

Belonging to Jesus

Teach me to see

that if Christ has pacified thee and satisfied divine justice

he can also deliver me from my sins;

that Christ does not desire me, now justified,

to live in self-confidence in my own strength,

but gives me the law of the Spirit of life

to enable me to obey thee;

that the Spirit and his power are mine

by resting on Christ’s death;

that the Spirit of life within answers to the law without;

that if I sin not I should thank thee for it;

that if I sin I should be humbled daily under it;

that I should mourn for sin more than other men do,

for when I see I shall die because of sin,

that makes me mourn;

when I see how sin strikes at thee,

that makes me mourn;

when I see that sin caused Christ’s death,

that makes me mourn;

that sanctification is the evidence of reconciliation,

proving that faith has truly apprehended Christ;

Thou hast taught me

That faith is nothing else than receiving thy kindness;

That it is an adherence to Christ, a resting on him,

Love clinging to him as a branch to the tree,

To seek life and vigor from him.

I thank thee for showing me the vast difference

between knowing things by reason,

and knowing them by the spirit of faith.

By reason I see a thing is so;

by faith I know it as it is.

I have seen thee by reason and have not been amazed,

I have seen thee as thou art in thy Son and have been ravished to behold thee.

I bless thee that I am thine in my Savior, Jesus.

 

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Puritan Prayer: Vocation

Heavenly Father,

Thou hast placed me in the church
which Thy Son purchased by His own blood.
Add grace to grace that I may live worthy
of my vocation.

I am a voyager across life’s ocean;
Safe in heaven’s ark, may I pass through
a troubled world
into the harbour of eternal rest.

I am a tree of the vineyard Thou hast planted.
Grant me not to be barren, with worthless
leaves and wild grapes;
Prune me of useless branches;
Water me with dews of blessing.
I am part of the Lamb’s bride, the church.
Help me to be true, faithful, chaste, loving,
pure, devoted;

Let no strong affection wantonly dally
with the world.
May I live high above a love of things temporal,
sanctified, cleansed, unblemished, hallowed
by grace,
Thy love my fullness,
Thy glory my joy,
Thy precepts my pathway,
Thy cross my resting place.

My heart is not always a flame of adoring love,
But, resting in Thy Son’s redemption,
I look forward to the days of heaven,
where no langour shall oppress,
no iniquities chill,
no mists of unbelief dim the eye,
no zeal ever tires.

Father, these thoughts are the stay, prop, and comfort of my soul.

~from The Valley of Vision: A Collection of Puritan Prayers, edited by Arthur Bennett

Puritan Prayer: “First Day Morning”

O Lord,

We commune with thee every day,
but week days are worldly days,
and secular concerns reduce heavenly impressions.
We bless thee therefore for the day sacred to our souls
when we can wait upon thee and be refreshed;
We thank thee for the institutions of religion
by use of which we draw near to thee and thou to us;
We rejoice in another Lord’s Day
when we call off our minds from the cares of the world
and attend upon thee without distraction;
Let our retirement be devout,
our conversation edifying,
our reading pious,
our hearing profitable,
that our souls may be quickened and elevated.
We are going to the house of prayer,
pour upon us the spirit of grace and supplication;
We are going to the house of praise,
awaken in us every grateful and cheerful emotion;
We are going to the house of instruction,
give testimony to the Word preached,
and glorify it in the hearts of all who hear;
may it enlighten the ignorant,
awaken the careless, reclaim the wandering,
establish the weak, comfort the feeble-minded,
make ready a people for their Lord.
Be a sanctuary to all who cannot come,
Forget not those who never come,
And do thou bestow upon us
benevolence towards our dependents,
forgiveness towards our enemies,
peaceableness towards our neighbors,
openness towards our fellow-Christians.
~From Valley of Vision

“New Year”: A Prayer from The Valley of Vision

O Lord,
Length of days does not profit me
except the days are passed in Thy presence,
in Thy service, to Thy glory.
Give me a grace that precedes, follows, guides,
sustains, sanctifies, aids every hour,
that I may not be one moment apart from Thee,
but may rely on Thy Spirit
to supply every thought,
speak in every word,
direct every step,
prosper every work,
build up every mote of faith,
and give me a desire
to show forth Thy praise;
testify Thy love,
advance Thy kingdom.

I launch my bark on the unknown waters of this year,
with Thee, O Father as my harbour,
Thee, O Son, at my helm,
Thee O Holy Spirit, filling my sails.
Guide me to heaven with my loins girt,
my lamp burning,
my ear open to Thy calls,
my heart full of love,
my soul free.

Give me Thy grace to sanctify me,
Thy comforts to cheer,
Thy wisdom to teach,
Thy right hand to guide,
Thy counsel to instruct,
Thy law to judge,
Thy presence to stabilize.
May Thy fear by my awe,
Thy triumphs my joy.

The Gospel Way

from The Valley of Vision

Blessed Lord Jesus,

No human mind could conceive or invent the gospel.

Acting in eternal grace, thou art both

its messenger and its message,

lived out on earth through infinite compassion,

applying thy life to insult, injury, death,

that I might be redeemed, ransomed, freed.

Blessed be thou, O Father, for contriving this way,

Eternal thanks to thee, O Lamb of God, for opening this way,

Praise everlasting to thee, O Holy Spirit, for applying this way to my heart.

Glorious Trinity, impress the gospel on my soul, until its virtue diffuses every faculty;

Let it be heard, acknowledged, professed, felt.

Teach me to secure this mighty blessing;

Help me to give up every darling lust,

to submit heart and life to its command,

to have it in my will,

controlling my affections,

moulding my understanding;

to adhere strictly to the rules of true religion,

not departing from them in any instance,

nor for any advantage in order to escape evil, inconvenience or danger.

Take me to the cross to seek glory from its infamy;

Strip me of every pleasing pretence of righteousness by my own doings.

O gracious Redeemer,

I have neglected thee too long,

often crucified thee,

crucified thee afresh by my impenitence,

put thee to open shame.

I thank thee for the patience that has borne with me so long,

and for the grace that now makes me willing to be thine.

O unite me to thyself with inseparable bonds,

that nothing may ever draw me back from thee,

my Lord, my Saviour.

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