I’ve just finished reading a book that’s been on my shelf for a very long time… and I’m very, VERY glad I did. It’s called, “A Call to Spiritual Reformation” by Dr. D.A. Carson. It’s a very thoughtful consideration of some of the prayers of the Apostle Paul that are recorded in scripture. If you want to feel embarrassed about your prayer life, just compare your typical prayers to those of Paul… But it’s a “good” sort of embarrassment, one that motivates you toward change. I think the Bible calls that “repentance.”
Anyway, the “Afterword” of the book was worth the entire read… (not to say the book itself wasn’t good – it was VERY good). It’s a prayer, written by Dr. Carson – that echoes the desire of my heart… See if you feel the same about the portion below…
So we ask you for your blessing, for the power of the Spirit, that we may know you better and grow in our grasp of your incalculable love for us. Bless us, Lord God, not with ease or endless triumph, but with faithfulness. Bless us with the right number of tears, and with minds and hearts that hunger both to know and to do your Word. Bless us with profound hunger and thirst for righteousness, a zeal for truth, and love of people. Bless us with the perspective that weighs all things from the vantage point of eternity. Bless us with transparent love of holiness. Grant to us strength in weakness, joy in sorrow, calmness in conflict, patience when opposed or attacked, trustworthiness under temptation, love when we are hated, firmness and farsightedness when the climate prefers faddishness and drift.
We beg of you, holy and merciful God, that we may be used by you to extend your kingdom widely, to bring many to know and love you truly.
Grant above all that our lives will increasingly bring glory to your dear Son, our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.
May the God of peace, who through the blood of the eternal covenant brought back from the dead our Lord Jesus, that great Shepherd of the sheep, equip us with everything good for doing his will, and may he work in us what is pleasing to him, through Jesus Christ, to whom be glory for ever and ever. Amen.