Saturday, May 07, 2005

The Awakened Sinner

O my forgetful soul,

Awake from thy wandering dream;
turn from chasing vanities,
look inward, forward, upward,
view thyself,
reflect upon thyself,
who and what thou art, why here,
what thou must soon be.
Thou art a creature of God,
formed and furnished by him,
lodged in a body like a shepherd in his tent;
Dost thou not desire to know God’s ways?

O God,
Thou injured, neglected, provoked Benefactor
when I think upon thy greatness and thy goodness
I am ashamed at my insensibility,
I blush to lift up my face,
for I have foolishly erred.
Shall I go on neglecting thee,
when every one of thy rational creatures
should love thee,
and take every care to please thee?
I confess that thou hast not been in all my thoughts,
that the knowledge of thyself as the end of
my being has been strangely overlooked,
that I have never seriously considered
my heart-need.
But although my mind is perplexed and divided,
my nature perverse,
yet my secret dispositions still desire thee.
Let me not delay to come to thee;
Break the fatal enchantment that binds
my evil affections,
and bring me to a happy mind that rests in thee,
for thou hast made me and canst not forget me.
Let thy Spirit teach me the vital lessons of Christ,
for I am slow to learn;
And hear thou my broken cries.

From The Valley of Vision: A Collection of Puritan Prayers and Devotions.


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