One of the things I’ve been doing lately is reading through the prayers and meditations of the Puritans from the book “The Valley of Vision.” In fact, Julie and I utilize them many nights as exactly that—prayers that we pray aloud. We also enjoy the prayers that were written for specific days of the week, and have found them to be effective in helping our whole family focus on what’s ahead. Reading a morning one before the day begins or an evening one at dinner can be just the ticket that brings perspective. Not surprising — that’s what prayer does in all moments (Phil 4:6-8)!
One that was especially encouraging is entitled “The Mover,” and I want to share a few lines here simply to encourage us all to begin and end each day with God in his “high and lifted up” place as our focus. Why? I’ve discovered that as he is rightfully seen, we’ll be humbly secure. Here’s a portion of this prayer to that end.
Thou dost not move men like stones,
but dost endue them with life,
not to enable them to move without thee,
but in submission to thee, the first mover.
O Lord, I am astonished at the difference
between my receivings and my deservings,
between the state I am now in and my past gracelessness,
between the heaven I am bound for and the hell I merit.
Who made me to differ, but thee?
For I was no more ready to receive Christ than were others;
I could not have begun to love thee hadst thou not first loved me,
Or been willing unless thou hadst first made me so.
O that such a crown should fit the head of such a sinner!
Such high advancement be for an unfruitful person!
Such joys for so vile a rebel!
NOTE: “The Valley of Vision” is published by Banner of Truth Trust.