O God of the highest heaven,
occupy the throne of my heart,
take full possession and reign supreme,
lay low every rebel lust,
let no vile passion resist thy holy war;
manifest thy mighty power,
and make me thine forever.
Thou art worthy to be
praised with my every breath,
loved with my every faculty of soul,
served with my every act of life.
Thou hast loved me, espoused me, received me,
purchased, washed, favored, clothed, adorned me,
when I was a worthless, vile soiled, polluted.
I was dead in iniquities,
having no eyes to see thee,
no ears to hear thee,
no taste to relish thy joys,
no intelligence to know thee;
But thy Spirit has quickened me,
has brought me into a new world as a new creature,
has given me spiritual perception,
has opened to me thy Word as light, guide, solace, joy.
Thy presence is to me a treasure of unending peace;
No provocation can part me from thy sympathy,
for thou hast drawn me with cords of love,
and dost forgive me daily, hourly.
O help me then to walk worthy of thy love,
of my hopes, and my vocation.
Keep me, for I cannot keep myself;
Protect me that no evil befall me;
Let me lay aside every sin admired of many;
Help me to walk by thy side, lean on thy arm,
hold converse with thee,
That I may be salt of the earth
and a blessing to all.
~ from Valley of Vision
7 thoughts on “Regeneration: A Puritan Prayer”
Pingback: WHAT I LIKE – April 6 | A DEVOTED LIFE
I’m so not interested in the “Reformed Spirituality” category (yeah, I know where it comes from, generally, and it implies a having arrived at something rather than being in a continual state of reforming), but I’m definitely oh-so-interested and moved by this prayer. Thank you for sharing it.
I can understand why one might be ambivalent about the “Reformed Spirituality” category. I use that heading primarily because some view Reformed Spirituality as being all head and no heart. While many within the Reformed tradition do seem to embody that caricature, I like to show that it erroneous – both to view the Reformed Christianity that way, and even more so to be such a Christian whatever the tradition.
In short, though, I concur with your priority. To experience what the prayer expresses is far more important than any label.
Thanks for your thoughtful reply to my fairly hastily typed comment. You gave me too much credit in attributing “ambivalence” to me. 🙂 I’m actually put off by the “Reformed” label, although I’m probably a half-one-point and one-quarter-another “Calvinist.” Anyway, your use of the label seems admirable. I understand wanting to paint new hues on pictures. My own tradition also seems — in a different vein, but the same nonetheless — “all head” to some. Balance, right?
Personally, I’m moving back toward the head from a prior phase of affirmative action toward the heart, and I’m reluctant to accept those things that come out of subjectivity, but certainly not all “heart stuff” is subjective, and even more certainly, not everyone is where I am.
We used the prayer in our home gathering on Sunday night, and I noted the facial expressions of appreciation all around our room.
I appreciate your pilgrimage – whatever your tradition. As I aluded above, and in agreement with you, it is not just about the head nor just about the heart, it is both (and throw in the hands, too, because faith without expressing itself in love is worthless). But rather than mere balance, I prefer the word synergy. Balance may imply a temporing of either head or heart, while I think the head informs the heart and the heart seeks something substantive….
I am glad to hear your group appreciated the prayer. It is from a collection of prayers in book titled Valley of Vision. (Link provided at end of post.)
Just curious, I wonder what you and/or your group woud think of the poetry of John Newton, expressed in a song I posted some time back: I Asked the Lord to Grow in Grace https://wdennisgriffith.wordpress.com/2012/08/10/i-asked-the-lord-to-grow-in-grace/
That message gets me every time.
Grace & Peace.
Dennis, thank you again. You make a good point about “synergy” over mere, shallow balance.
I probably spend too much energy resisting tradition-systems, including the “Reformed” ones, my own (frontier American Restorationist), all definitely the Roman one, and pretty much all the rest. But I figure someone has to resist, or else the masses will continue blindly to accept superimposed human systems as though they were God’s revealed will. 🙂
The John Newton I’ve seen is certainly good with me, including a scan of the “growth” song (a sort of ballad? interesting tenor!) you pointed me to. Our group (students and my wife and me) has its plate pretty full, but I might work that in to a closing time in 1Thessalonians, which does deal a lot with growth — e.g., “abound all the more.” Thanks.
Pingback: Happy 9th Birthday JoyReturns! | JoyReturns