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Wednesday, November 09, 2005

Praying before Prayer

I don't know if any of you are like me, but I get so frustrated in my prayer life when my mind wanders and I begin to think of things I need to do whilst uttering prayers to God. I find myself repenting of my prayers! Here is a great prayer that Andrewes would pray before he prayed that I intend to use each day before I pray. I am sure it will help me to keep focused.
O Almighty and everliving God, heavenly Father, to whom it is manifestly known, how inconstant and wandering the minds of men are, in any good actions; and how easily we suffer ourselves to be carried away from the contemplation of thee, by diversity of distractions, and unseasonable thoughts, which take hold of us, in the time of our devotions and prayers unto thee; who also, by thine only begotten Son Christ Jesus, didst prescribe unto his disciples a form of prayer to be offered up to thee, and hast derived the same from them to us. Behold me, most wretched sinner, wholly depraved and corrupt, entreating thee, by the same Son, that for his sake thou wouldest infuse thy Holy Spirit into me, which may adopt me into the number of thine elect: that it may teach me how I ought to pray, according to thy holy will: that it may allay all troublesome and wandering thoughts in me, while I offer up my prayers and praises unto thee: suffer me not to serve thee with my lips, and be absent in heart from thee: but create a right spirit within me, that I being sensible of all thy graces and comforts, may with a joyful and holy zeal, perform my duty to thee: that so, my prayers and desires may appear before thee; and in thy Son’s name, I may effectually be heard, and my petitions may be granted, to the glory and honour of thy most holy name, and the endless comfort of mine own soul, through the same, our only Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. Amen.

6 Comments:

Blogger James the Thickheaded said...

Whew! And for all this time I thought maybe I was the only one...Thanks for posting this!

3:34 am  
Blogger Adam said...

Oh my yes! That is ALWAYS a huge problem for me. The worst/funniest things is that lately I haven't even been praying much, so the problem is not as bad as it was when I was praying more! :)

Thanks for the post.

4:13 am  
Anonymous Ty Seal said...

What a great help! Praying that the Lord help me pray appropriately before I pray. A really helpful post. Thanks Jeff.

3:46 pm  
Blogger Mike+ said...

There is a similar prayer at the top of page 592 of the 1928 BCP. I pray it before the Morning and Evening offices.

9:14 pm  
Blogger James the Thickheaded said...

Jeff:

Having mentioned the value of this passage, let me ask if I may, which work you found this in? Of all the works on Lancelot Andrews, which are you relying on the most?

Thanks!!

1:58 am  
Blogger Jeff said...

James this is from Dr. Marianne Dorman's article on the prayers of Andrewes found at http://anglicanhistory.org/essays/dorman1.html. I am looking at all of his sermons and writings in order to make an analysis of his Eucharistic theology.

11:31 am  

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    O God, most glorious, most bountiful, accept, we humbly beseech thee, our praises and thanksgivings for thy holy Catholic Church, the mother of us all who bear the name of Christ; for the faith which it hath conveyed in safety to our time, and the mercies by which it hath enlarged and comforted the souls of men; for the virtues which it hath established upon earth, and the holy lives by which it glorifieth both the world and thee; to whom, O blessed Trinity (+), be ascribed all honour, might, majesty and dominion, now and for ever. Amen.
    --Bishop Lancelot Andrewes

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