A preacher-boy’s prayer

Who am I that I should be your child, Father? I am awed in your presence, to the point of anguish in my soul. Oh Lord, I do not deserve your mercies. If you were to throw me into hell, you would be justified! And yet, oh God, you have called me to speak for you?!

Woe! The mercy of God is terrifying! I would run, but for your call. I would flee, but am drawn to your terrible and loving face. God of Heaven, Lord of hosts, deliver me! Lift me up from where I have fallen as a dead man before your gaze. Strengthen my feeble knees and wretched arms so that I will not be crushed beneath your merciful and generous calling.

Oh God, who am I to go for you?! Who am I to speak your words!? I tremble in my very heart. My teeth are on edge at the unbearable glory of your presence. Who am I, Father? I cannot stand beneath your calling; I cannot live outside of it. I cannot accomplish what you ask of me, and so you must guide me and uphold me like a newborn child. There is no strength in my arms. There is no endurance in my legs. My words are more fragile than dust; they taste like death in my mouth. Oh Lord, carry me by your Spirit! Wield your sword by your own strength as I stand in your power. Speak your own honey-sweet, all-satisfying words as I open my mouth. Do not abandon me and leave me to my own devices. Take not your Spirit from me, or I will die.

Who am I, Lord, to go in the power of your name? Yet I will. Not for my glory (may Jesus Christ destroy the desire for it), but for the sake of your name and in your power.

Who am I, Lord? I am yours; your own to do with as you desire. In prosperity or starvation, I am yours. In honor or in shame, I am yours. In life and in death, I am yours.

Blessed be your name!


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