Prayers from Some Dead People

Prayers from “Orthodox Daily Prayers” by Anonymous (public domain)

As you read through these brief prayers below, the idea is not to just copy them. You could, but I believe they would be hollow prayers. Don’t copy them because words like “thee,” “thou,” “givest,” and “woe” occur and most of us don’t speak that way. We should speak to God in the manner we normally speak and not make up some language to speak to God.

Please do read these prayers and see what sorts of things you should be praying about and how we can address God. Look for the heart behind what is prayed! Learn to pray by looking at the prayers of others… this is acceptable! No one was born knowing how to pray (except maybe John the Baptist, Luke 1:15) and so the rest of us need to observe, learn, practice, do, and improve in our prayer lives. After the prayers, there are some questions to ponder to help you process the prayers.

Some prayers for your consideration:

“1st Prayer, by St. Macarius the Great. O God, cleanse me a sinner, for I have done nothing good before Thee. Deliver me from the evil one, and may Thy will be in me, that I might open my unworthy lips without condemnation and praise Thy holy name, Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, now and ever and unto ages of ages. Amen.”

“3rd Prayer, by St. Macarius the Great. Having risen from sleep, I run to Thee, O Master, for Thou lovest mankind, and I rush to accomplish Thy work. Help me, I pray Thee, at all times and in all things. Deliver me from every evil thing of this world and from works of the devil. Save me, and lead me into Thine eternal Kingdom. Thou art my Maker, The Provider and Giver of everything good. All my hope is in Thee and I glorify Thee, now and ever and unto ages of ages. Amen.”

“7th Prayer, also by St. Basil. We bless Thee, most high God and Lord of mercies, Who ever doest great and unfathomable things for us—glorious and awesome things without number. Thou givest us sleep for the repose of our frailty, relieving the labors of our over-burdened flesh. We thank Thee for not destroying us in our lawlessness. Instead, Thou hast shown Thy usual love for mankind, and raised us, as we lay in despair, to glorify Thy Reign. Therefore, we implore Thy boundless goodness: enlighten our thoughts and eyes, and awaken our minds from the heavy sleep of laziness. Open our lips and fill them with Thy praise, that we may unwaveringly hymn and confess Thee, the God glorified in all and by all, Father without beginning, with Thine only-begotten Son and Thine all-holy, and life-giving Spirit, now and ever and unto ages of ages. Amen.”

“O Lord, grant that I may meet all that this coming day brings to me with spiritual tranquility. Grant that I may fully surrender myself to Thy holy Will. At every hour of this day, direct and support me in all things. Whatsoever news may reach me in the course of the day, teach me to accept it with a calm soul and the firm conviction that all is subject to Thy holy Will. Direct my thoughts and feelings in all my words and actions. In all unexpected occurrences, do not let me forget that all is sent down from Thee. Grant that I may deal straightforwardly and wisely with every member of my family, neither embarrassing nor saddening anyone. O Lord, grant me the strength to endure the fatigue of the coming day and all the events that take place during it. Direct my will and teach me to pray, to believe, to hope, to be patient, to forgive, and to love. Amen.”

“Have mercy on me, O God, have mercy on me! O woe is me, a sinner! I am the most wretched of men! There is no repentance in me! Grant me tears, Lord, that I may weep bitterly over my deeds.”

QUESTIONS TO PONDER

What words or phrases jumped out at you as important in the prayers?

What are the emotions expressed in the prayers and how was that done?

Is there something you should add in your times of prayer based on these example prayers?

Is there something you should subtract in your times of prayer based on these example prayers?

How do these prayers address God or describe Jesus and how can you add these thoughts humbly in your own prayers?

What do you still want to understand about prayer and when will you look up a proper resource to help you?

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