O Lord, grant me to greet the day in peace. Help me in all things to rely upon your holy will. . .Bless my dealings with all who surround me. Teach me to treat all that comes to me throughout the day with peace of soul and with the firm conviction that Your will governs all. In all my deeds and words, guide my thoughts and feelings. In unforeseen events, let me not forget that all are sent by You. Teach me to act firmly and wisely, without embittering or embarrassing others. Give me strength to bear the fatigue of the coming day with all that it shall bring. Direct my will; teach me to pray. . .
I came across a portion of this prayer while reading Elisabeth Elliot’s A Path Through Suffering: Discovering the relationship between God’s mercy and our pain, Regal Books, 1990. This prayer was found in the writings of St. Philaret of Moscow, an Orthodox priest who served during the reign of the Tsars in the early 1800s.
Though the word sovereignty may seem a religious word that has no use outside of a church service or theology discussion, I think it must truly be an everyday word in the life of a sincere Christ-follower. Easton’s Bible Dictionary defines the word:
How I look at the circumstances of my life, of the lives of my friends and family; how I see world events, political regimes, as well as any other category you may imagine, there is one basic question that demands an answer —
Is the God of the universe Sovereign, or is He not?
The honest answer to that question determines:
whether I am truly a bondservant of Jesus, or an entitled Pharisee;
whether I truly believe that the Lord is my Shepherd, or if I am determined to forge my own path;
whether I will be at peace, or whether I will worry and be anxious;
whether I believe that God is for me, and that He is good, or that He has some agenda that is meant to make me miserable, or worse, that He is impotent and out of control.
The psalmist David (later king) wrote this:
I have set the Lord always before me; because he is at my right hand, I shall not be shaken. Therefore my heart is glad, and my whole being rejoices; my flesh also dwells secure. For you will not abandon my soul to Sheol, or let your holy one see corruption. You make known to me the path of life; in your presence there is fullness of joy; at your right hand are pleasures forevermore. Psalm 16:8-11 ESV
I want my behavior to match my theology. I want to truly live my faith, and share my life. My “plea for grace” is that I need Jesus — desperately.