After a while I start to feel lazy when posting quotes and prayers from other people. But this prayer from Scotty Smith is a good one. I love his prayers for their humanness. I like The Valley of Vision as much as the next guy, but somewhere along the way the prayers take on a kind of formality, presumably in the antiquated language. But here in Scotty Smith’s prayers there is something I can identify with much more. There an informality, a hesitation (check out all those ellipses) that seems just like the way I pray.
This prayer is premised on Isaiah 26:3-4: “You will keep in perfect peace him whose mind is steadfast, because he trusts in you. Trust in the LORD forever, for the LORD, the LORD, is the Rock eternal.”
Most kind and trustworthy Father, you haven’t promised me a storm-less, hassle-free disappointment-empty life. You offer me no formulas for decreasing the probability of sad things happening around me or disillusioning things happening to me. But you have promised me something that transcends the chaos and fear of uncertainty.
Father, you’ve promised to keep me in perfect peace, in the midst of whatever happens. O, how I treasure the promise of being kept by you. For there are times I simply cannot keep myself… I have no boot straps to pull up… no magic happy pill to take… no fix-it button to push. Thank you for being a Father who will never forget or abandon your children… who will never forget or abandon me.
And how I praise you for the promise of being kept, not just in peace… but in perfect peace… as I mind and mine your trustworthy-ness. For you are the LORD–the eternal Rock that is higher than me… the Rock of refuge… the Rock of ages! This leads me to cry out for greater steadfastness of mind… for more gospel-sanity… for more power to bring my wandering, distractible, unbelieving thoughts into captivity to you.
Yet I will not despair when I am weak in concentration and focus. Indeed, Father, you’re not calling me to trust in my ability to trust, but to trust in you… in your trustworthy-ness, not in my trust-ability. For you’ve even promised your children a peace that passes… surpasses… even by-passes all understanding. Hallelujah!
What a God you are! There is none like you, Father, no not one! How great are your mercies… how profound your kindnesses… how more-than-sufficient your grace! So very Amen, I pray, in the name of Jesus, the Prince of Peace… the basis and bounty of all my peace.