Henry Law

Family Prayers

CHOICE EXCERPTS

 

The throne of grace

(by Henry Law)

Holy, holy, holy Lord God Almighty, heaven and earth are full of Your glory! Blessing and honor and glory and power be to You, O Father of mercies, O God of all grace and love.
 

We thank You, that, as vile and sin-soiled as we are—we may come into Your immediate presence, and hold this converse with You, and commune with You concerning all our concerns, all our sins, and fears and hopes and desires.

We are astonished that we, poor sinners on earth, may speak directly to You—our great and glorious God, on Your throne in the heaven of heavens! How wondrous the thought that our poor breathings may fly on the wings of faith, and have instant access to the ears of Your grace!

We thank You that, in the multitude of Your tender mercies and the riches of Your pitiful compassion, You have been pleased to erect this throne of grace before which we now most humbly bow. We bless You that here, free grace reigns. We bless You that, at all times and in all places, we have open access to You through the blood of Your dear Son.

We bless You that the veil is open, and that in His great name we may ever approach and find You ready to hear,  

waiting to be gracious, 

arrayed in smiles of love,  

bidding us to touch the scepter of Your sovereign mercy,  

inviting us to pour out every need and desire of our hearts,  

and promising to give more than we can ask or think.

Grant, oh grant, that we may be wholly consecrated to You. May we, in spirit, soar far above earth. May our hearts be fast barred against admission of worldly thoughts or cares. Send Your peace, passing all understanding, as a flood into our anxious minds.  May our meditations of You be sweet. May we drink deeply of the refreshing streams proceeding out of Your throne. May we feast on the heaven-sent manna of Your precious Word, and thus gather strength for the upward race.

Hear us, answer us, bless us we pray. All we ask is in Jesus' name, and for Jesus' sake. Amen.
 

"Therefore let us approach the throne of grace with boldness, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us at the proper time." Hebrews 4:16

 

~  ~  ~  ~

 

Calvary's stupendous scene!

(by Henry Law)

"It is finished!" John 19:30


Holy Father,
The heavens, the earth, and all that are therein, proclaim Your wondrous goodness. But Your love shines forth in surpassing luster—at Calvary's stupendous scene! At the cross we see Your heavenly grace removing the tremendous load of our iniquities from us—and heaping them all on Your beloved Son! We see Him standing as a transgressor in our place. We see Him, who knew no sin—made sin for us. We see Him, the all-holy One—accounted as a curse! We see Your justice leading the spotless Lamb to the slaughter—and rigorously demanding the full payment for all our sin-debt!

The avenging sword entered into His very heart!

The stream of sin-atoning blood flows!

Full recompense was meted out!  

Divine Justice can ask no more.

Charges against us are all obliterated.

The debt-book is cancelled. If our sins are searched for, they cannot now be found!

The spotless Lamb was devoted to all anguish—that we may be inheritors of all joy.

He was cast off from You—that we may be brought near to You.

He was treated as Your enemy—that we may be welcomed as Your friends.

He was deserted by You—that we may be received to Your everlasting favor.

He was surrendered to hell's worst—that we may attain heaven's best.

He was stripped—that we may be clothed.

He was wounded—that we may be healed.

He thirsted—that we may drink of the water of life.

He was in darkness—that we may rejoice in the glories of eternal day.

He wept—that all tears may be forever wiped from our eyes.

He groaned—that we may sing an endless song.

He endured all pain—that we may rejoice in unfading health.

He wore a crown of thorns—that we may receive a crown of glory.

He bowed His head in death—that we may lift up our head in heaven.

He bore earth's reproach—that we may receive heaven's welcome.

He was tormented—that we may be comforted.

He was made all shame—that we may inherit all glory.

His eyes were dark in death—that our eyes may gaze on unclouded brightness.

He died and rose—that we may escape the second death, and live forevermore.

O gracious Father, thus You spared not Your only begotten Son—that You may spare us! All our sins are cast behind Your back—all are buried in the ocean of reconciling blood!

We can only fall low and cry, "We adore You for the gift of Your Son as our substitute; for the death of Your Son as our ransom!"

Blessed Jesus, we have been standing beneath Your cross. The sight constrains us to the deepest humility. Our vile iniquity—is the cause of Your shame! We cannot fathom the sins which plunged You into such depths of unutterable woe! We cannot estimate the burden of wrath which thus crushed You. We cannot deny that the sins which stain us are evils of infinite malignity, since nothing but Your blood could wash away their guilty stains! As transgressors, we abhor ourselves before You.

While we humbly gaze—may we anxiously ponder, "Why, blessed Jesus—why did You thus die?" May Your precious answer sound through every part of our hearts and souls,
"I died—that you may not die.
I laid down My life—to purchase your life.
I presented Myself as a sin-offering—to expiate all your sins.

My blood thus streams—to wash out all your guilt.

The fountain is thus opened in My side—to cleanse you from all impurity. I thus endured your curse. I thus paid your debt. I thus rescued you from all condemnation. I thus satisfied divine justice for you!"  
 

~  ~  ~  ~ 
 

We meekly knock at mercy's gate

(by Henry Law)

"All of us have become like something unclean, and all our righteous acts are like filthy rags; all of us wither like a leaf, and our iniquities carry us away like the wind!" Isaiah 64:6

Holy Father, Almighty God,
We feel our weakness, our ignorance, our deep corruptions. We meekly knock at mercy's gate. Regard us in tender love—for Jesus' sake. Bend down Your ear—and grant Your smile.

We are blind—be our light.

We are ignorant—be our wisdom.

We are steeped in selfishness—pluck all SELF out of us.

In the deep sense of our guilt—we fly for refuge into the wounded side of Jesus! Be merciful, be merciful unto us—our only hope is in Your unfailing mercy.
 

Our sins rise higher than the heavens—but Your merits on our behalf surpass the very heaven of heavens!

Our unrighteousness would weigh us down to hell—but Your glorious righteousness exalts us to Your heavenly throne!

All things in us call for our damnation—but all things in You demand our forgiveness.

We appeal, then, from Your throne of perfect justice—to Your throne of boundless grace!

Blessed Jesus, we hide ourselves in the sure covert of Your wrath-appeasing wounds!

Grant us to hear Your voice assuring us: that by Your stripes we are healed; that You have been bruised for our iniquities; that You have been made sin for us—that we might have Your divine righteousness; and that all our vile and grievous iniquities are forgiven and buried in the ocean of Your sin-concealing blood!

We are guilty—yet pardoned!

We are lost in ourselves—yet fully saved in You!

Enable us to cling firmly to Your cross—even as we now seek safety and repose beneath its sin-atoning shelter!

Let floods of sustaining grace from Your inexhaustible treasury, enrich our poor and weary souls.

If the enemy approaches, quicken our steps to flee into the wounds of Jesus as our sure refuge! Sheltered in the ark of safety, may we cease to tremble at all alarms.  

May You, our good Shepherd, lead us this day into the green pastures of Your refreshing Word, and cause us to lie down beside the rivers of Your divine comforts.

These prayers we humbly offer in the name of Jesus Christ, trusting only in His saving merits. Amen.

 

~  ~  ~  ~

 

As we pass along the miry paths of life

(by Henry Law)

O Lord, our Lord, how excellent is Your name in all the earth! You have set Your glory above the heavens. From Your high throne behold with gracious eye—Your humble servants. We would not cross the threshold of this day, without committing ourselves, our souls and bodies, all our concerns, and all our friends—to Your guardian care. We know that we are not our own; we desire to be wholly Yours. Watch over us, keep us, guide us, direct us, sanctify us, and bless us. Incline our hearts to delight in Your holy ways. 

As the potter frames the clay—may You mold us wholly into the blessed image of Jesus! Make us vessels of honor, fitted for Your service. May our lips, as well-tuned harps, sound the sweet melody of Your heavenly praise. May all around take knowledge of us—that we have been with Jesus—that we are dead to earthly vanities—crucified with Christ—yet living by Your Spirit—trampling the world beneath our spurning feet—having no conformity to its lying vanities—but being transformed by the renewing of our minds—clad in Your whole armor—shining as lights in the dark world—and having "holiness to the Lord" conspicuous on our brow!

We do not know with what matters, we may be intermingled with this day. Let no evil soil our hands. Help us, as we pass along the miry paths of life—to keep our garments pure from all spot and stain. While transacting needful concerns, may our affections be high in heaven with You. As the flame tends upward, so may the fire of heavenly love in our souls, kindled and fanned by Your Holy Spirit—be ever ascending in a brighter and purer blaze!
 

Keep our gaze immovably fixed, not on the things which are seen—but on the things which are not seen; for the things which are seen are temporal—but the things which are unseen are eternal. Open our eyes to see "emptiness, fragility and mockery" inscribed on all earth's vanities! They cannot satisfy! As a shadow—they depart and flee away! While we grasp them—they are gone! May we view all things in the 'mirror of eternity!'

Impress on us the solemn truth, that in a little while, "the heavens will disappear with a roar; the elements will be destroyed by fire, and the earth and everything in it will be laid bare!" May we move through this world, with one aspiration ever swelling within our hearts, "Come, Lord Jesus, come quickly!"

 

~  ~  ~  ~

 

We are tied and bound by its enslaving chain! 

(by Henry Law)

"For you know that it was not with perishable things such as silver or gold that you were redeemed from the empty way of life handed down to you from your forefathers, but with the precious blood of Christ, a lamb without blemish or defect!" 1 Peter 1:18-19

Blessed Jesus, we kneel before Your cross, humbly praying that through Your Spirit, power may come forth from it—to show us more deeply, the heinousness of our sin.  

We see You laden with our iniquities. What must iniquity be—if there can be no pardon except that You should thus expire in agony! We see the outgoing severity of divine wrath. What must that evil be—which thus requires it!

In that crown of thorns,
in those pierced hands and feet,
in those bleeding wounds,
in that bruised frame,
in that dying cry
—we are taught the enormity of our guilt!

We know that the worth of Your blood is infinite. Its precious value exceeds all thought! Infinite therefore must be the evil—for which it is the only ransom. Exceeding all thought must be the guilt—which requires such a great price! In Your death—we see the tremendous guilt of our sins. We see it, and we cast ourselves in the lowliest humility before You.

SIN is the malady which so sorely afflicts us. It cleaves to us as our very skin! It is born in our birth. It lives in our lives. It adheres to us when we lie down to die. It follows us as our very shadow! It intermingles in our every thought. When we go forth—it is by our side. When we come in—it still accompanies us. We are tied and bound by its enslaving chain! At Your cross—we are taught how terrible is the evil of sin. We see how unutterable is the wrath which it so righteously deserves.

Laden with our mountains of sins—we come to You for refuge. Looking to You, and striving to estimate more and more the riches of redeeming grace—we loathe and abhor ourselves—as fully sin-soiled and polluted. We marvel that . . .  

  the sun consents to give us light,
  the air consents to supply breath,
  the earth consents to bear our tread,
  the fruit tree consents to nourish us, 

  Your creatures consent to serve our use.
Because of US—the whole creation groans and travails. Justly might all things, animate and inanimate, rise in abhorrence of us!

How much more do we marvel, precious Jesus—
 that Your compassionate heart yearned over us,
 that Your love hastened to our rescue,
 that You endured all our curse, and all our guilt!
We bless You—while we hide our heads in deepest shame!

Gracious Savior, may the sight of Your unutterable sufferings excite in us—due detestation of this monster, sin! Oh, forbid it, that we should ever dally with that foe—which brought You to such anguish. Forbid it, that we should fondle in our breasts that viper—which stung You to death! Forbid it that we should lightly regard that sin, which kindled the flames of hell, from which nothing but Your dying love could snatch us! May we hate it with unrelenting hate! May we abhor it with abhorrence—only exceeded by the infinite love with which we desire infinitely to love You, our adorable Savior!

But while we pray that henceforth we may increasingly abominate all evil—we know that, without Your grace, our traitorous heart will look treacherously back. It has often deceived us. It has often betrayed us. Bind our truant heart more closely to Yourself. Never allow it to stray.

You are our only Redeemer. You are our only help. Repentance, and strength, and pardon are the free gifts of Your grace. We adore You that You are exalted to be Lord and Savior, to give repentance and forgiveness of sins to Your people. Fill us, we beg You, with godly sorrow. From the depths of our humiliation—we cry aloud to the heights of Your mercy! Having died to deliver us from the punishment of our sins, we trust You to deliver us from their power. Hear us, we earnestly beseech You. Amen.  

"Search me, O God, and know my heart; test me and know my anxious thoughts. Point out anything in me that offends you, and lead me along the path of everlasting life!" Psalm 139:23-24
 

~  ~  ~  ~

 

Our tears of penitence cannot remove one blot!

(by Henry Law)

"Where sin abounded—grace did much more abound!" Romans 5:20


Heavenly Father,
Deepen in us this day, contrition for our vileness, as miserable sinners in Your sight. How often without resistance, have we floated down the stream of evil! We cloak not our wretchedness. Our lips are ready to confess—but our hearts are slow to feel, and our feet are reluctant to amend our ways. We bring our hard hearts unto You. Break them by Your Spirit—and then bind them up by Your grace. Wound them to the core—and then pour in the Gospel-balm!

Such is the blindness of our fallen nature—that we cannot see sin's deformity, except as You are pleased to unmask it. Such is our deadness—that we cannot hate it, except as You shall graciously implant abhorrence. Such is our infirmity, that we cannot flee it—except as Your strength enables. Conscious of our total inability—we come to You for light, for help, for strength, for blessing.

Our sins beyond number stare us in the face! They are piled as mountain upon mountain. Their height reaches to the heavens! But their full extent is open only to Your omniscient eye. The burden of our known transgressions weighs us to the dust. But the burden is light, compared to the mass which the scales of Your justice hold. We see but little, because our light is partial and our sight is dim. How must we appear, as seen by You, before whom the very heavens are not clean! You charge Your holy angels with folly. What must be Your estimate of our polluted souls! Humbled for what we see and feel; fearful for what is known only unto You—we meekly cry, "Pardon all our sins—for Jesus' sake!"

We smite upon our breasts, as utterly unworthy of the least of Your gracious and unfathomable mercies. Hear now our cry, and work in us by the omnipotence of Your Holy Spirit, more profound and abiding repentance.

Give us more and more of that godly grief

which ever fears and trembles, and yet ever trusts and loves

which is ever watchful and prayerful, and yet is ever confident and hopeful.  

May the remembrance of the sad past—quicken us to walk in entire newness of life. Grant that through the tears of penitence, we may see more clearly—the brightness and the glories of the saving Cross!

Oh! blessed Jesus—we flee to You!
We cling to You. Our countless iniquities condemn us—but You will wash them all away! Our tears of penitence cannot remove one blot! But Your blood has all cleansing merit. Our prayers can earn no pardon. But Your mercy says, "Your sins which are many—are all forgiven!" The more we loathe ourselves—the more we love You! Our vile demerits—commend Your glorious worth!

 

~  ~  ~  ~

 

The sword of Divine justice buried in His sinless heart!

(by Henry Law)

Holy Father,
We blush to lift up our eyes unto You, O God of all grace and love. Shame and confusion of face humble us to the very dust. Wherever You have been boundless in mercy—we have been abundant in sin! We cannot measure our ingratitude. We cannot estimate our vileness. Each day has added to our guilt. Each scene has witnessed our wicked hearts, our straying feet and our offending tongues. What is there in heaven or in earth, above, around, without, or within—which condemns us not?
 

The sun condemns us, which has seen our misdeeds; the darkness, too, which hides nothing from Your all-penetrating eye! 

The cruel accuser justly accuses us. Your righteous law, Your holy Word, our sin-soiled consciences, our public and our private hours—write dark things against us!  

We make no denial. We frame no excuse. We confess, Father, that we have sinned against heaven and before You—and are not worthy to be called Your sons!

But still we live! We live to fly as contrite penitents to Your extended arms! We know that You will not cast us off—for Jesus brings us near. You will not condemn us—for Your dear Son died in our place. You will not mark the mountains upon mountains of our sins—for the Savior has removed them all. His precious blood has washed out every crimson stain!

Christ's spotless robe of righteousness, covers all our deformities! We put it on by the hand of faith—and we rejoice that we are lovely in His precious loveliness, and beauteous in His matchless beauty.


Open widely the eyes of our faith, that we may see all our justly merited curse, expended on the faultless head of our precious sin-atoning Savior, and the sword of Divine justice buried in His sinless heart!

We come to You . . .
  clinging to His cross,
  sheltered by His side,
  hidden in His wounds,
  cleansed in His blood,
  covered by His spotless robe,
  beautified in His salvation!

 

~  ~  ~  ~

 

We confess with shame

(by Henry Law)

We confess with shame—past hours wasted in unprofitable reading and other worldly entertainments. If other days are ours—guide us that no more time be squandered in vain pursuits.

Impress on our minds the shortness of time—the work to be done—the account to be rendered—the nearness of eternity—the misery of lamps expired, when the voice of the Bridegroom is heard.

May we never forget that . . .
  Your eye always sees us;
  Your ear always hears us;
  Your recording hand commits all to a book of remembrance;
  all hidden works must be unveiled at the judgment day!

Above all things—may we seek Your favor!

Above all things—may we dread Your frown!

May Christ be the pulse of our hearts.

May He speak in every word of our lips.

May He shine in every step of our earthly walk.

Grant our requests for His dear sake. Amen.


~  ~  ~  ~

 

It is the vile monster!

(by Henry Law)

We beseech You to deepen in our hearts—the abhorrence of all evil. May we hate sin with perfect hatred. It is the vile monster which . . .
  defies Your power,
  casts off Your yoke,
  treads down Your lovely law,
  defiles our nature,
  spreads misery throughout this earth,
  brought death into the world, and
  nailed the spotless Lamb of God to the accursed tree!

Teach us to look to Jesus on the cross—and so to estimate its loathsome guilt in Your sight.

Could there be no pardon—but through Your dear Son's death!

Could no cleansing wash out its filth—but Jesus' precious blood!

Could no atonement expiate the evil—but the shame, the agony, the bruises of Christ, the incarnate God!

We see the boundless price—may we read therein the boundless guilt!

In the infinite payment—show us the infinite debt!

Thus may we discern the deadly viper in its real malignity, and tear it with holy indignation from our breasts, and resolutely turn from its every snare, and refuse to hold polluting dalliance with it!

~  ~  ~  ~


May we read the meltings of Your heart towards us

(by Henry Law)
 

You have made us Your favored inheritance, the garden of Your choice delights. You have washed us from all our filth. You have covered us with the spotless robe of Your righteousness. You have adorned us with the glories of Your pure obedience.

What could have been done more for Your vineyard—which You have not done for us! You have loved us more than Your own life. With loving-kindness You have drawn us. You forgive our daily and hourly transgressions. None of our sinful provocations separate us from Your sympathy. You will never leave us nor forsake us. You preserve us until we safely reach the heaven of heavens, and sit beside You on Your glorious Throne!

Now we would go forth to our appointed work, walking by Your side, leaning on Your arm, holding sweet converse with You. May we be as the salt of the earth—a blessing to all around.

 

~  ~  ~  ~


Shall we, then, flaunt proudly in Your sight?


(by Henry Law)

"This is what the LORD says—Let not the wise man boast of his wisdom, or the strong man boast of his strength, or the rich man boast of his riches!" Jeremiah 9:23

Who are we, that pride should swell within us! Our original is the mire beneath our feet. Dust we are—and unto dust we soon return. In material, we do not surpass the most detestable reptile. Whatever difference of form and intellect is ours—is freely granted by Your goodness. Our every faculty of mind and body—is Your undeserved gift.

Thus low as creatures—we are far lower as sinners. We have times without number trampled on Your righteous law. Sin's deformity is stamped upon us; its hideousness darkens on our brow; its loathsome touch has fixed corruption on us. Shall we, then, flaunt proudly in Your sight? The lowest depths of self-abasement is our due place. We are far less than nothing in Your all-seeing eye. Help us to see ourselves—as we are seen by You. Then pride must wither, vanish, decay, and die!

Your Word assures us that You give grace to the lowly. Humble our hearts before You—and then replenish them with Your choicest gifts. May our position ever be the lowliest of the lowly—that our spiritual riches may exceedingly abound.

Enable us to walk on earth—even as Your beloved Son walked. He is our most perfect model. He was meek and lowly in heart. Let His meekness be our all-covering garb. Clothe us entirely with His humility.
 

~  ~  ~  ~
 

We would grope and stumble in the bewildering paths of ignorance and error!

(by Henry Law)

"For who makes you different from anyone else? What do you have—that you did not receive?" 1 Corinthians 4:7

Holy Father, Almighty Lord God, listen to the cry of Your humble servants. Without Your light—our minds are all darkness. We would grope and stumble in the bewildering paths of ignorance and error!

Without Your regenerating Spirit—our wills are wholly depraved, and resolutely bent to resist the good and to espouse the evil.

Without Your distinguishing grace—we would at this moment be . . .
  afar off from You,
  vile among the vilest,
  bond-slaves of the devil,
  grinding in Satan's mill, and 
  earning his wages of eternal woe!
 

~  ~  ~  ~  ~ 
 

We offer His blood to pay the debt

(by Henry Law)
 

Lord God Almighty, Father of mercies, screened from all evil by Your gracious providence, we come to encircle You with grateful praise. We bless You that at every moment, the throne of grace has been opened—and that the scepter of Your love has been extended to us. Pardon us that our prayers have been so few, so poor, so feeble. While You are always ready to hear, and inviting us to close communion—our souls abide amid trifles, and dally with vain follies. We grovel on earth—when we might ascend, through prayer, to heaven and You. Pity us, good Lord. You know of what we are made. You remember that we are dust. O God, make speed to save us. O Lord, make haste to help us.

We come not in our own name, seeking Your compassionate grace. We bring the Name of Your dear Son before You, in the arms of our faith. In whatever we have robbed You of obedience—we offer His blood to pay the debt. Impute to our account:
 

  His worthiness—for our unworthiness;
  His sinlessness—for our sinfulness;
  His purity—for our impurity;
  His sincerity—for our deceit;
  His truth—for our lies; 
  His meekness—for our pride;
  His steadfastness—for our backslidings;
  His love—for our enmity;
  His fullness—for our emptiness;
  His glory—for our shame;
  His perfect obedience—for our incessant disobedience;
  His beauty—for our deformity;
  His devotedness to Your will—for our waywardness;
  His holy life—for our unholy ways;
  His perfect righteousness—for our manifold unrighteousnesses.

We hide ourselves in Him. We flee unto Him as our sure city of refuge. We know that in Him—we have redemption through His blood, even the forgiveness of all our sins. We rejoice that there is no condemnation to those who are in Christ Jesus. Thus we cry, "Abba, Father!" in the name of Jesus, and retire to rest in peace.

 

~  ~  ~  ~

 

Your boundless stores!

(by Henry Law)

Holy Father, Almighty Lord God, listen to the cry of Your humble servants. Our defilements prove that we are miserable sinners. Your forbearance proves that Your mercy reaches above the heavens. We still live to cling to the cross of Your dear Son.

We see the world before us this morning. We know our weakness—and we are prone to fear; but we look up to You—and we fear no more. If we venture to go forth alone—we stumble and fall; but leaning on our Beloved—we are as firm as the everlasting hills! If left to the treachery of our own hearts—we shall bring shame to Your holy name; but enlightened, guided, and upheld by Your Spirit—we shall adorn Your heavenly doctrine.

Hear, then, our prayer, and be . . .
  our arm to support us,
  our light that we may see,
  our strength that we may stand,
  our feet that we may run,
  our shield that we may receive no wound,
  our sword that we may repel each foe,
  our dew to refresh us,
  our sun to ripen each grace.

To enrich us in all fruitfulness and fullness—would not diminish Your riches! To supply all our needs—would not detract from Your boundless stores!  

May Your presence always abash vice, check worldly-mindedness—and diffuse through us the fragrance of pure godliness.

Assist us, by the lamp of Your Word and the piercing rays of Your Spirit—to search every corner of our hearts. Let no Achan-sin escape detection! Let every Agag-sin be hewn to pieces! Let every idol-sin be stomped into powder! Let every rebel lust be nailed to the Savior's cross! Let "holiness to the Lord" be the language of our lips, the sandals of our feet, and the clear engraving on our brows.

 

~  ~  ~  ~


Cast them into the deep ocean of His all-cleansing blood!

(by Henry Law)

We give thanks unto You, O Father, for You are good, for Your mercy endures forever!
 

May Your dear Son, our only Savior, be this day more and more revealed to our adoring hearts. 

We desire to know the breadth and length, the depth and height of His all-surpassing love!  

Help us to gaze more and more with the eye of faith, on Him who was crucified for us—until we are changed into His image from glory to glory.  

May we learn at His cross—the exceeding vileness and dreadful deceits of sin. We would be taught to measure the infinitude of His tender pitifulness—by the infinitude of His sufferings in our place. We would bring every sin of every moment of our lives—and cast them into the deep ocean of His all-cleansing blood!

Blessed Jesus, through You we have access to the Father. Through You we now draw near. Ever adored be Your grace for this ready way, opened through the rent veil of Your crucified body.
 

Great High Priest, ever pleading at God's right hand, receive our sin-soiled prayers, cleanse them in Your precious blood, perfume them by the sweet savor of Your merits, and obtain acceptance for them. Extend Your wounded hands in our behalf. Behold us in the depths of our need—and pour down blessings on our waiting souls.

May Your Word go forth, conquering and to conquer. Strengthen it as a hammer—to break our rocky hearts into pieces.

Nothing exceeds Your power.

Nothing is too good for You to give.

Infinite is Your might!

Boundless is Your love!

Limitless is Your grace!

Nothing is too great for You to accomplish!
 

Put forth Your power, and may . . .
  sinners be repenting,
  prodigals be restored,
  outcasts be brought in,
  rebels be subdued,
  backsliders be reclaimed,
  Satan's captives be released,
  blind eyes be opened,
  broken hearts be bound up,
  the desponding be cheered,
  the self-righteous be stripped of their vain pleas,
  the formalist be driven from a refuge of lies,
  the ignorant be enlightened, 
  brands be plucked out of the fire, 
  Your saints be built up in their most holy faith, and fitted for their eternal glorious inheritance!

We ask great things—but we ask of You—our great and awesome God, all in the name of our glorious and almighty Savior, even Your own Son, Jesus Christ, our infallible Mediator and Redeemer. Amen.

 

~  ~  ~  ~

 

Our besotted faculties are dull to comprehend You!

(by Henry Law)

Father of heaven, God of all grace and love,
We thank and adore You for the priceless inheritance which You have reserved for Your children—which is kept in heaven for us, pure and undefiled, beyond the reach of change and decay! Keep us by Your mighty power, unto the full enjoyment of the pleasures at Your right hand for evermore!

Ofttimes have our longing thoughts gone forth to the eternal day—when we shall see You as You are, without one cloud of unbelief, without the interruption of one straying thought, without the downcast look of shame—but when there shall be one bright blaze of glory forever! We thank You that the lapse of another day—has brought us one day nearer to our glorious eternal home! Ofttimes have we panted for fuller knowledge of You, our God. But we have only seen You through a glass darkly. Our besotted faculties are dull to comprehend You; but then we shall see You face to face, and know even as we are known!

We look forward to that day when we take our last breath—we shall knock at heaven's gate in the name of Jesus. We shall present ourselves washed from earth's every stain, in His all-cleansing blood. We shall draw near to Your majestic throne, screened entirely in Jesus—the Lord our righteousness!

 

~  ~  ~  ~

 

Shall our eyes be dry?

(by Henry Law)

Father of heaven, God of all grace and love, help us now to lie low in supplicating cries.
 

We come humbly—because we come as wretched sinners in ourselves.

We come boldly—because we come in the mighty name of Jesus. Strengthen our faith, that we may refuse to let You go—until You bless us with all blessings.

We are pained by our graceless hearts. We bewail our prayerless prayers. We know that whatever we ask in prayer believing—we shall receive. It is because of our vile sin—that we are so poor in grace. We are sluggards in the heavenly race, we are grovelers in the mire, when we should be soaring to the heights of heaven, on the eagle-wings of faith!

What great things have we lost, because we have not drawn near to take them! Pardon the deadness of our poor hearts. On the knees of our hearts—may we be incessant in telling You our sincere needs and our desires. Grant that our life may be one sweet savor of devotion!

Did Your dear Son weep when He saw Jerusalem in the gall of bitterness and unbelief—and shall our eyes be dry when we contemplate the perishing multitudes of this sin-sick world! Our spirits should be stirred within us, when we reflect that the devil reigns as a tyrant over his enslaved dupes!
 

What present misery!

What future anguish!

What desolation now!

What weeping and wailing and gnashing of teeth forever!

Take our humble prayers, and present them with acceptance, O Lord Jesus Christ, our Savior and our all. Amen.

 

~  ~  ~  ~

 

To follow You fully is heaven—before heaven is reached!

(by Henry Law)

"Let us fix our eyes on Jesus!" Hebrews 12:2
 

O Lord Jesus Christ, in the wisdom of Your tender mercy, You have been pleased to proclaim Yourself as Wonderful, Counselor, the mighty God, the everlasting Father, the Prince of Peace! These names are revealed for our peace and joy—that we may acquaint ourselves with You, and find rest unto our souls.

Help us by Your Spirit, entirely to know You according to Your Word. Open widely the eyes of our understanding, that we may fully grasp . . .
  the wonders of Your person;
  the wonders of Your love and grace and power;
  the wonders which You have already achieved by Your sin-atoning death; 

  the wonders which You are achieving by Your unfailing intercession;
  the wonders which are yet to come when You shall appear again in power and great glory! Let Your counsels sound sweetly in the ear of our faith, and may we yield in humble obedience to Your sacred precepts. To follow You fully is heaven—before heaven is reached!

Pardon us, that with such bright revelations of Yourself in the pages of Scripture—we have been so slow to learn, and so prone to forget. When by this time, we should have climbed the highest heights of spiritual perception. But alas! we are groveling in low depths of ignorance! We are blind—while light shines around! Take away all 'scales' from our eyes. Grind to dust—all remnants of the evil heart of unbelief.

Make it our chief joy . . .
  to study You,
  to meditate on You,
  to gaze on You,
  to hold communion with You!
Enable us to experience that Your flesh is food indeed, and Your blood is drink indeed. May we be . . .
  like Mary—sitting meekly at Your feet;
  like the beloved disciple—leaning on Your breast;
  like Paul, counting all things as loss, for the excellency of knowing You;
  like Peter, appealing to You, who knows all things—that we indeed love You.

Let not our faith cease from seeking You—until it vanishes in unclouded sight!

Answer us, for Your love's sake. Amen.

 

~  ~  ~  ~


Hold me up!

(by Henry Law)

Almighty Father,
Conscious of our own weakness, trusting only in Your grace and power, we beseech You this day to increase and multiply Your mercy upon us. We are going forth to tread on slippery ground—may You uphold us. Our march is through a land of which Satan is the prince—may You protect us. Snares at each turn await our steps—may You guide us. We look around—and fear. We look up to You—and take courage. By Your grace alone can we stand. If Your grace should fail us—instantly we fall. Our earnest prayer is, "Hold me up—and I shall be safe!" Psalm 119:115

 

~  ~  ~  ~

 

The old man yet lives!

(by Henry Law)

O ever-watchful Shepherd of Your flock—lead us, guide us, safely tend to us this day. Without Your restraining rod—we shall err and stray like lost sheep. Hedge up our paths—lest we be misled into the unwholesome pastures of the world, and drink of its poisonous streams. Direct our feet—lest we be entangled by some secret snare of the devil, or stumble into his hidden pitfalls. Encircle Your fold by Your protecting power, that the roaring lion may not devour, nor any cruel foe assail. Remember Your ransomed flock. Protect and preserve it as the purchase of Your dear Son's blood.
 

O Lord, we beseech You now to defend us, not only from outward adversaries—but especially from ourselves! We have foes which cleave closer to us than our very skin! We cannot escape them. Help us to elude their enticing wiles. In public and in private, when we come in or go out, whether we rise up or sit down—they cling to our heart. Deliver us from their constant baits and traps. The old man yet lives within us and is powerful. Help us to nail him to the cross of Jesus! We earnestly desire to put him off with all his foul deeds—and to put on the new man, which is created in righteousness and true holiness. If You speak the word—the victory is ours!

Our best strength, is utter weakness. Our firmest resolves, are as fleeting as the morning cloud and early dew. In our flesh there dwells no good thing—it is the vile abode of every corrupt desire. It is the den in which all vile passions lurk. Left to ourselves, we fall. But Your Spirit is omnipotent. Oh! then, bid Your Spirit to arise in all His might, and crush our indwelling opponents!

How often do we mourn that, when we would do good, evil is present with us. The good that we would do—we cannot do; the evil that we would not do—that we do. We look to You to deliver us from the body of this death. Strengthen us with heavenly aid in the inner man, lest we faint and be weary in the conflict—and yield to our bosom-foes. The enemy is within the citadel! Come with Your almighty power and subdue him. Enable us, therefore, by Your Spirit, to mortify all the deeds of the body.

O Jesus, we are Yours! Other lords have had dominion over us—but now we are Your willing servants. O come, then, You who are our Lord, pierce to the death—utterly destroy—abolish in us every particle of carnal self!

 

~  ~  ~  ~

 

Our hearts are Yours!

(by Henry Law)

"My son, give Me your heart, and let your eyes observe My ways." Proverbs 23:26
 

Holy Father, Almighty God,
We desire to give our hearts to You, without one shadow of reserve. We beseech You to take full possession of them.

Expel mightily every opposing foe.

Crush every rebel lust.

Mortify each traitorous passion.

Annihilate each earth-born desire.

Our hearts are Yours—for You have created them.

They are Yours—for You have redeemed them by the most precious blood of Your only begotten Son.

They are Yours—because in free love You have renewed them by Your Holy Spirit.

They are Yours—because You have conquered them by Your grace.

They are Yours—because we willingly surrender them to You.

Occupy them wholly by Your presence.

Exclude every intruding rival.

Reign supreme within them.

We would love You now, and forevermore, with all our hearts, and all our souls, and all our might, and all our strength. You are worthy of infinitude adoration, far beyond what our dull hearts can yield. Is love among men awakened by genius, wisdom, worth, and seeming perfection? You are the very perfection of all perfections. All intellect is derived from You. Our scanty rivulets flow from Your unfathomable fountain.
 

Compared with You—the sun is darkness, all beauty is deformity, all knowledge is folly, the best goodness is most faulty. You, the great Creator, who inhabits eternity, are high above all creatures. So invigorate our love, that it may worthily rise to You and tightly entwine itself around You!


~  ~  ~  ~
 

While we mourn over our many maladies

(by Henry Law)

"This is the victory that has overcome the world, even our faith." 1 John 5:4
 

While we mourn over our many maladies—we see that increase of faith would be the grand remedy! Our hearts are often . . .
  the cage of every unclean bird,
  the fount of every loathsome desire,
  the deadly fruit of every poisonous tree,
  the open wayside of every earthly lust and passion.
This is because our faith sleeps. Awaken it, good Lord—give it more strength, until it brings all heaven into the soul—and all impurity is cast out.

We now go forth to intermingle with the world. This foe is artful to entrap us. It will approach in an enchanting guise. It will extend many a gilded bait, and will present many a poisoned cup. Lord, increase our faith—and we shall scorn every painted bauble, and trample down every bewitching snare! We shall then be more than conquerors, for this is the victory that has overcome the world, even our faith!

May our hearts be entirely weaned from the world, dead to its outward enticements, and wholly consecrated to You. Help us by Your grace—that we may live with You, and to You, during the little speck of our earthly sojourn.  

Oh! hear the cry of our anxious hearts, and increase our faith, through the merits and for the sake of Jesus Christ. Amen.

 

~  ~  ~  ~
 

This Heavenly Visitor

(by Henry Law)

O Lord Jesus Christ, most gracious Savior, with grateful joy we come to You. We know Your boundless love—and believe that You delight over us. We look to Your cross—and we see how You have loved us!

We remember Your wondrous word, "I will ask the Father, and He shall give you another Comforter, that He may abide with you forever—even the Spirit of truth." We spread before You this most blessed pledge. We present our empty hearts before You—and we meekly beseech You to fill them with Your Holy Spirit.

We earnestly desire to be temples entirely occupied by His presence. We are blind; send Him to give us light. Darkness is around us and within us; may He say, Let there be light, and there shall be light. May He give us faith to see our names engraved on Your heart—our souls assuredly redeemed by Your blood—our lives of sinfulness gloriously covered by Your life of pure obedience. Replenish us with His revealing grace, that we may realize our indissoluble oneness with You—that You have espoused us to Yourself forever in righteousness, and in judgment, and in loving-kindness, and in mercies, and in faithfulness —that we are one with You as branches are one with the stem, as a building is one with the foundation, and that nothing can part us from Your unchanging love.

In the midst of our sorrows—may His comforts cheer us. In all our trials—may His strength sustain us. When we are disposed to faint and be weary, may the dew of His blessing revive us. May His presence render us very fruitful trees of holiness. By His might establish within us, the reign of righteousness and peace and joy. Send Him as the Searcher of hearts to show us more of our utter corruption, that in deep self-abhorrence, realizing our worse than helplessness, we may flee to You, cling more closely to You, and receive You, as the beginning and the end, the first and the last of our salvation.

By Your Spirit, kindle within us the undying flame of adoration, so that our heaven of praise may commence on earth, and that the endless hallelujahs may be no new song to us. So dispose our hearts, that when He shall seek us with all these blessings on His wings—that we may never vex Him by our indifference and waywardness, never grieve Him by our cold welcome, never resist Him by our harsh rebellion; but may we lift up the gates of our souls that this Heavenly Visitor may come in, and occupy the throne and rule forever!

Especially may Your Spirit aid us when we search the Scriptures. The depths are very deep; the heights are exceeding high. We have no lines to fathom, and no wings to soar; but by His gracious help may we be enabled to explore all truth, to love it with all our hearts, to embrace it with all our powers, and to engraft it in our lives. Thus may we daily become more spiritually-minded, which is life and peace.

Accept and answer our humble petitions, for Your great name's sake. Amen.


~  ~  ~  ~

 

Soon our last grain will fall through the hour-glass!

(by Henry Law)

"Redeeming the time, because the days are evil." Ephesians 5:16

Time is very short. Soon our last grain will fall through the hour-glass! Grant that we may gather up the fragments which remain, that no more may be lost.

O King, eternal, immortal, invisible, the only wise God—be glorified in us and by us this day and forever, through Jesus Christ our Mediator and Advocate. Amen.

"Teach us to number our days aright—that we may gain a heart of wisdom." Psalm 90:12

~  ~  ~  ~

 

A little speck, a breath, a vanishing shadow, a fading flower 

(by Henry Law)  

"Redeeming the time, because the days are evil." Ephesians 5:16

We humbly pray that all the occurrences of this departing day may work together for our good. A little stage of life is passed. Its end should find us riper in grace—and more fit to see Your face. But we have left many duties undone—may this condemning thought strip us more and more of all self-righteousness; and deepen in us the resolve, that, if other days are ours, they shall, Your Spirit helping us—be more devoted to Your gracious service.

Past opportunities can never be recalled. They once were ours to use, and their misuse adds to our overwhelming guilt. While we plead Your dear Son's atonement as our hope of pardon—may we be quickened to more constant and watchful care. Help us to redeem the time, knowing that to us it is very shorta little speck, a breath, a vanishing shadow, a fading flower. And seeing that we have no merit of our own, may we prize more intensely the inestimable merits of Christ Jesus our Lord, whom we rejoicingly receive as our wisdom, our righteousness, our sanctification, and our redemption.
 

"Teach us to number our days aright—that we may gain a heart of wisdom." Psalm 90:12

Many temptations have beset our path. Grant that in each we may see the deceit, the subtlety, the bitter enmity, and the wily power of our deadly adversaries. May the experience of this day lead us to stand with a more wary eye on the watch-tower of faith, and to cling with more determined grasp to the almighty arm of our protecting Lord. Wherever we have fallen, may we smite upon our breasts and hide our sins beneath the Redeemer's sheltering righteousness. Wherever we have escaped, may we ascribe deliverance wholly to Your sustaining grace, and may our grateful songs exalt the Lord our Strength. If we have been permitted to do anything to the glory of Your great name, whether in word or work—be pleased to add Your effectual blessing, and multiply a thousand-fold, the seed so scantily sown.

 

~  ~  ~  ~

 

May we see our sins

(by Henry Law)  

O God the Holy Spirit, have mercy upon us miserable sinners. Move, we beseech You, in our disordered hearts. Remove the deformities of unruly desire and hateful lusts. Chase away the mists and darkness of unbelief. Brighten our inner man with the pure light of truth. Sow abundantly the seeds of righteousness. Make our souls fragrant as the garden of the Lord. Enrich them with every godly fruit. Beautify them with heavenly grace. Be our comforter, our guide, our light, our sanctification.

Especially take of the things of Christ, and show them with enlarged power to our longing souls. May we daily learn more of His love, His grace, His tender compassion, His faithfulness, and His beauty. May we delight ourselves in Him with increased delight. Lead us to the cross, and show us in His wounds—the hateful character of sin. May we see our sins, as . . . 
  the nails which transfixed Him,
  the cords which bound Him,
  the sword which pierced Him,
  the thorns which tore Him,
  the taunts which stung Him.
Help us to read in His cruel death—the reality and immensity of His love. Open to us the wondrous volumes of glorious truth in the cry, "It is finished!"
Our atonement is forever achieved,
our debt is fully paid,
all our guilt is washed away,
all our sins most righteously forgiven,
our persons are redeemed,
our souls saved,
hell vanquished,
the devil crushed,
heaven won, and
eternity of glory our rightful home!

Holy Spirit, deepen in us these saving lessons. Write them with Your finger on the tablets of our hearts. May our walk be one of . . .
  sin-loathing,
  sin-fleeing,
  Christ-loving, and
  God-fearing.

 

~  ~  ~  ~

 

The chosen pleasure-ground of our souls!

(by Henry Law)

O God of patience and consolation, glory be to You, for this throne of grace. Make it ever to us—the chosen pleasure-ground of our souls. May it be the fortress to which continually we flee. Here may we obtain mercy and find grace to help in time of need. Here may we see by faith, Your reconciled smile. Here may we rejoice to plead the name of Jesus. Here may we . . .
  sharpen the sword of the Spirit,
  anoint the shield of faith, and
  put on the helmet of salvation.

By prayer also, may we gather supplies of heavenly manna—even the precious nourishment of Your Word. Thus may we be strengthened for each conflict, nerved for our upward race, and empowered for more than conquest over every foe. We know that Christ is the open channel for all blessings to descend upon us. Help us to beg, until the sluices of mercy widely open, and our souls are so replenished, that there shall be no room to receive more.

We marvel at our cruel folly, that when such enriching favors are within our reach—that we are so slow to extend the hand to take them! Compassionate our deadness for Your great Name's sake. Quicken us, arouse us, stir us up, fill us with holy zeal, put strength into us—that we may strive with You, and refuse to let You go. It is Your glory to be vanquished by the power of prayer. May Your Spirit within us, wrest all blessings from Your yielding hands!
 

~  ~  ~  ~

 

Let every Agag be hewed to pieces!

(by Henry Law)

"Search me, O God, and know my heart; test me and know my anxious thoughts. Point out anything in me that offends You, and lead me along the path of everlasting life!" Psalm 139:23-24


Holy Father, Almighty Lord God, listen to the cry of Your humble servants. May Your presence always abash vice, check worldly-mindedness—and diffuse through us the fragrance of pure godliness.

Assist us, by the lamp of Your Word and the piercing rays of Your Spirit—to search every corner of our hearts.

Let no Achan escape detection!

Let every Agag be hewed to pieces!

Let every idol be stomped to powder!

Let every rebel lust be nailed to the Savior's cross!

Let "holiness to the Lord" be the language of our lips, the sandals of our feet, and the clear engraving on our brows.

With undoubting faith, we place these our poor prayers in the hands of Jesus Christ, our Mediator and Intercessor. Amen.


~  ~  ~  ~

 

The mirror of eternity!

(by Henry Law)

"But whatever was to my profit I now consider loss for the sake of Christ. What is more, I consider everything a loss compared to the surpassing greatness of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord, for whose sake I have lost all things. I consider them rubbish—that I may gain Christ!" Philippians 3:7-8


Enable us to view every circumstance in the mirror of eternity! Deliver us from all covetousness of filthy lucre. May we weigh all things in the scales of eternity, and regard all worldly things as less than nothing, which have no value in Your sight.

Let us not forget the day of final reckoning, and do all as unto You, and under the power of that sure word, "You O God, see me!"


~  ~  ~  ~

 

We now hide ourselves in our great Redeemer's wounds

(by Henry Law)

O Eternal God, who alone has immortality, ever living in glory, unchanged and unchangeable, bend down Your ear to hear. Hearken and bless us. May the close of another day teach us the rapid flight of time. Truly our life is but a vapor. How soon will our sojourn on earth be done. As the spilled water cannot be gathered up, so lost opportunities return no more.
 

Pardon us that we have so poorly used the hours which have just fled. Pardon us that we have so failed to do Your work and to advance Your glory. We humble ourselves as most unprofitable servants. Our best doings are but filthy rags. Our worst doings—how hateful they must be to You, in whose sight the very heavens are not clean. In shame we now hide ourselves in our great Redeemer's wounds. Clinging to His cross, we supplicate forgiveness of every committed sin and of every omitted duty.


~  ~  ~  ~

 

It would fall short of our vast debt to You!

(by Henry Law)

God Almighty, heavenly Father,
Your eye of love has never failed to watch us. But our eyes have turned from You, to countless vanities! We smite upon our breasts before You—and bewail our waywardness and folly!

It is through Your protecting care alone, that we now kneel in safety in Your presence. Every moment, streams of mercy have flowed from heaven. We confess with shame and contrition, that we are not worthy of the least of all the mercies and all the grace which You have granted to us. If our hearts should burn in one bright flame of love—if our lips should utter no sound but glowing praise—if our lives should be one incense of thanksgiving—it would fall short of our vast debt to You!

We remember the unprofitableness and the iniquity of our past sins. They arise before us, black in guilt, testifying against us, calling for our condemnation. We would silence their accusing voice—by burying them all in the deep grave of the Redeemer's wounds.

We present our empty hearts to You. Be pleased to fill them to overflowing with Your choicest gifts. We bring our blinded understanding; chase away all the mists of ignorance and superstition, by bright beams from the Sun of Righteousness. We would take our seat beneath the great Redeemer's cross; may healing streams continuously descend, cleansing us from all our filth, pouring sweet balm into every grievous wound, and purging our consciences from dead works to serve You, the living God.

 

~  ~  ~  ~

 

Lest the wily serpent should sneak in!

(by Henry Law)

Today, we especially commend our wicked and deceitful hearts to Your watchful care. We know their treachery. We cannot keep them. Guard their every portal, lest the wily serpent should sneak in. Give us quick discernment of his deadly arts. If he approaches us as an angel of light—may we detect the bold disguise, and bid him, "Be gone!"

Holy Spirit, so uncloak the empty vanity of all earthly things, that no conformity to its baubles may bespatter us with mire. Utterly transform us by the renewing of our minds. May our lips be as well tuned cymbals, sweetly sounding Your praise. May a halo of heavenly-mindedness sparkle around us. We are invited to precious delights. The banqueting-house of Your Word is wide open. The voice of the heavenly spouse calls to us: "Eat, O friends; drink, yes, drink abundantly, O beloved. Eat that which is good, and let your souls delight themselves in fatness!" Quicken us to arise and come apart, and regale ourselves amid the rich refreshment of gospel-promises. May we sit down under our Lord's shadow with great delight—and may we find His fruit sweet to our taste!
 

~  ~  ~  ~
 

Permit us to commend their wretchedness to You

(by Henry Law)

Throughout the wide earth, many of Your people this night are lying down in misery and pain. Their consciences accuse of sin; their minds are harassed by tormenting and foreboding thoughts; personal and relative anxieties hold their eyes waking. Permit us to commend their wretchedness to You, their great Creator and Savior. You have . . .
  a balm for every wound,
  a solace for every anguish,
  a remedy for every pain,
  a deliverance from every impossible situation,
  and a peace for all disquietude.

Hear our prayer for these, Your people, and grant help. You can change their 'night of darkness' into joyful light. Holy Spirit, reveal Jesus to them—which will give them unmixed blessedness. We thus implore You, for Jesus Christ's sake. Amen.


~  ~  ~  ~

 

We cling to Your saving cross!

(by Henry Law)

A review of this day, causes us to hide our faces in the dust of shame. Our best works are vile and hateful in our own sight! What, then, must they be in Yours! If our purest worship is unclean—how must our open transgressions rise in condemnation! Have mercy, have mercy upon us, for Your dear Son's sake. Have mercy, have mercy upon us, according to the multitude of Your tender mercies. Have mercy, have mercy upon us, for the great glory of Your great name.

May we retire to our rest this night, O blessed Savior, in the happy assurance that Your blood cleanses from all sin. We know that You will never cast out the people or the prayers of those who flee to You. To You—we now come. We clasp by faith Your precious promises. We cling to Your saving cross! We desire to wrestle with You in the might of faith, not letting You go, until You bless us
!