Book Talk Tuesday, Introduction to the Devout Life, Part 2, Chapter 10

Book Talk Tuesday, Introduction to the Devout Life, Part 2, Chapter 10

CHAPTER X. Morning Prayer.

BESIDES your systematic meditation and your other vocal prayers, there
are five shorter kinds of prayer, which are as aids and assistants to
the great devotion, and foremost among these is your morning prayer, as
a general preparation for all the day’s work. It should be made in this

1. Thank God, and adore Him for His Grace which has kept you safely
through the night, and if in anything you have offended against Him,
ask forgiveness.

2. Call to mind that the day now beginning is given you in order that
you may work for Eternity, and make a stedfast resolution to use this
day for that end.

3. Consider beforehand what occupations, duties and occasions are
likely this day to enable you to serve God; what temptations to offend
Him, either by vanity, anger, etc., may arise; and make a fervent
resolution to use all means of serving Him and confirming your own
piety; as also to avoid and resist whatever might hinder your salvation
and God’s Glory. Nor is it enough to make such a resolution,–you must
also prepare to carry it into effect. Thus, if you foresee having to
meet some one who is hottempered and irritable, you must not merely
resolve to guard your own temper, but you must consider by what gentle
words to conciliate him. If you know you will see some sick person,
consider how best to minister comfort to him, and so on.

4. Next, humble yourself before God, confessing that of yourself you
could carry out nothing that you have planned, either in avoiding evil
or seeking good. Then, so to say, take your heart in your hands, and
offer it and all your good intentions to God’s Gracious Majesty,
entreating Him to accept them, and strengthen you in His Service, which
you may do in some such words as these: “Lord, I lay before Thee my
weak heart, which Thou dost fill with good desires. Thou knowest that I
am unable to bring the same to good effect, unless Thou dost bless and
prosper them, and therefore, O Loving Father, I entreat of Thee to help
me by the Merits and Passion of Thy Dear Son, to Whose Honour I would
devote this day and my whole life.”

All these acts should be made briefly and heartily, before you leave
your room if possible, so that all the coming work of the day may be
prospered with God’s blessing; but anyhow, my daughter, I entreat you
never to omit them.