In the midst of busy days serving in church and community, I struggle to keep my heart and mind centered on Christ. And when conflicts arise and problems call for my attention, the struggle becomes even more difficult.
As I try to keep my eyes on Jesus while navigating the tension between active engagement and humble service, I find this prayer by William Barclay resonating with me:
O, God, our Father, in the life and death and resurrection of Jesus you have given us the remedy for sin. In him you have opened to us the way to forgiveness for all our past sins, and you have given us the strength and the power to live in purity and in truth.
Help us to put away all evil things.
Silence the evil word;
Forbid the evil deed;
Break the evil habit;
Banish the evil thought;
Take away the evil desire and the evil ambition;
and make our lives to shine like lights in this dark world.
Help us to live in purity.
Make all our words so pure
that you may hear them;
Make all our deeds so pure
that you may see them;
Make all our thoughts and desires so pure
that they may bear your scrutiny.
And so grant that we being pure in heart
may see you.
Help us to live in truth.
That we may never speak or act a lie;
That we may never be misled by false or mistaken beliefs;
That we may never evade the truth, even when we do not want to see it.
Grant to us at all times
To seek and to find;
To know and to love;
To obey and to live the truth.
This we ask for the sake of him who is the Way, the Truth, and the Life, even for the sake of Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
May God fill us all with His Spirit so that we may live our days in purity and truth, never forgetting to keep our eyes on Him.