a-Lenten-prayer-a-day, day 26, Thursday, March 30, 2017

my-hands-2-27-17Note: As a personal, spiritual discipline, I write a prayer for each of the forty days of Lent; each petition focusing on a theme, truly, relating to a care or concern weighing on my mind and heart, at times, vexing my soul and spirit…

On my one, mine only one consoling thought: O Blessed Trinity, I take heart in this one, mine only one consoling thought: Your Changeless Faithfulness…

For I am neither changeless nor faithful…

Throughout my days, e’en with the best of my intentions, I find myself failing to do the things that I ought to do and flourishing[1] in doing those things that I ought not to do and, in both, falling prey to manifold temptations. Some new. Most old. This latter, these olden compulsions, I (I must confess) know all too well; for, o’er time and through my experience, well-rehearsed have they been and have become …

In (all!) this, I find myself falling short, well (truly, unwell!) short of progress toward the good, Your Good…

In a word, O Blessed Trinity, if I were to reckon myself changeless, then it is in the faithfulness of my unfaithfulness to You…

Thus, daily, I must sing:

Great is Thy faithfulness…

There is no shadow of turning with Thee;

Thou changest not, Thy compassions, they fail not

As Thou hast been Thou forever wilt be.[2][3]

To which I alway then say: amen, amen, amen!

Footnotes:

[1] Here, I use the word “flourishing” not in the good sense of prospering or thriving, but rather to connote my accomplishing or succeeding in the doing of those things that I ought not to do.

[2] Words by Thomas Obadiah Chisholm (1866-1960)

[3] When I contemplate God’s unfailing “compassions”, I am led to read and reflect on the Epistle to the Romans. To wit: I find it to be a law that when I want to do what is good, evil lies close at hand…Wretched man that I am! Who will rescue me from this body of death? Thanks be to God through Jesus Christ our Lord…There is therefore now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus…Likewise the Spirit helps us in our weakness; for we do not know how to pray as we ought, but that very Spirit intercedes with sighs too deep for words…What then are we to say about these things? If God is for us, who is against us? He who did not withhold his own Son, but gave him up for all of us, will he not with him also give us everything else? Who will bring any charge against God’s elect? It is God who justifies. Who is to condemn? It is Christ Jesus, who died, yes, who was raised, who is at the right hand of God, who indeed intercedes for us (Romans 7.21, 24-25a, 8.1, 26, 31-34; my emphases). I marvel at this truth: That when I most condemn myself for my unfaithfulness, the One Who can condemn me unto eternity is the One Who already has saved me!

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3 thoughts on “a-Lenten-prayer-a-day, day 26, Thursday, March 30, 2017

  1. Thanks Paul!! This is just the heartfelt prayer We all need in Lent!! We all fail, especially with old temptations!! That’s one of the things I love about Lent! It gives me so much time to reflect on what I need to work on, and more importantly it allows me to really focus on making commitments to improve. I typically never make New Year’s resolutions because I’d rather want until Lent when I can get much more serious about myself and my relationship with God. People are rarely serious about God at New Years…it’s all about losing weight etc and that typically lasts all through January before becoming an epic fail. I’m grateful for God’s faithfulness in us, because as bad as we can be at times He still never turns away!! This prayer series keeps me focused and thus I don’t want to turn away, like I’ve done with resolutions in years gone by.

    Thanks and love as always!!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Love always to you!

      The more I delve into the depths of prayer via this vehicle of writing a prayer a day (and still I am not entirely sure how or why it was given to me to do this!), the more I behold and believe in God’s faithfulness in response to my faithlessness. Paradoxically, I find this realization to be both a humbling (being greatly aware of my brokenness) and exalting (being greatly aware of God’s goodness unto me) experience.

      Like

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