Here is a question worth asking: Outside of the Bible, what is the earliest prayer we know? Of all the Christians who lived after Christ, who was the first to have a prayer recorded that has endured through the ages? The answer, it seems, may well be Clement of Rome. In the new book Fount of Heaven which shares prayers from the earliest Christians, you’ll find this sweet prayer which dates from late in the first century. Yet, like any good prayer, it could as easily be prayed by any of us today.
Help us to set our hope on your name, Lord. You are the origin and source of all creation. You open the eyes of our hearts so we can know you.
You alone abide highest in the lofty place. You are holy in the holy. You lay low the insolence of the proud, set the lowly on high, and bring down the lofty. You make rich and poor, give life and death. You alone are the benefactor of spirits and the God of all flesh.
You look into the deepest places and see all our works. You help and relieve those who are in peril, and you are the savior of those in despair. You are the creator and overseer of every spirit.
You multiply the nations and have chosen out all who love you through Jesus Christ, your beloved Son, through whom you taught us, honored us, and set us apart. Amen.