Elder's Prayer - August 6, 2017
Please find below the notes from the Elder's Prayer this past Sunday.
I was disappointed with my heart’s response to a situation this past week. I was a bit troubled in my spirit with my frustrations and anger. As I was thinking through, I realized that every day, God gives me a clean slate and I promptly return to my folly of sin as if I learned nothing from the previous day. The resident evil in all of this is not that I don’t remember what I learned from the sins of my youth, committed, eons ago but the sins that I committed, confessed and have been forgiven of, from yesterday.
This experience reminded me a basic truth in our sanctification that “apart from Christ, we can do nothing”. We need to abide in Christ in order to be Christlike in our responses to life’s situations. I came across this beautiful prayer by one of our puritan fathers that I’d like to use to lead us this morning, which helped me to seek God’s help. Let’s pray.
BLESSED GOD, Ten thousand snares are mine without and within, defend thou me;
When sloth and indolence seize me, give me views of heaven;
When sinners entice me, give me disrelish of their ways;
When sensual pleasures tempt me, purify and refine me;
When I desire worldly possessions, help me to be rich toward thee;
When the vanities of the world ensnare me, let me not plunge into new guilt and ruin.
May I remember the dignity of my spiritual release, never be too busy to attend to my soul, never be so engrossed with time that I neglect the things of eternity; thus may I not only live, but grow towards thee.
Form my mind to right notions of religion, that I may not judge of grace by wrong conceptions, nor measure my spiritual advances by the efforts of my natural being.
May I seek after an increase of divine love to thee, after unreserved resignation to thy will, after extensive benevolence to my fellow creatures, after patience and fortitude of soul, after a heavenly disposition after a concern that I may please thee in public and private.
Draw on my soul the lineaments of Christ, in every trace and feature of which thou wilt take delight, for I am thy workmanship, created in Christ Jesus, thy letter written with the Holy Spirit’s pen, thy tilled soil ready for the sowing, then harvest.
In your Son’s name we pray, Amen.