Most of my praying is done at night. I’ll admit that is something I should probably change, but I am hardly what anyone would call a prayer warrior. Nevertheless, I want to share with you a nightly prayer I say. Sometimes I drop out of the habit of saying it, but a few months later, I’m in it again. It came largely from thinking about how C.S. Lewis said somewhere that one of the dangers of our life is that we keep picturing God as we think he is so much that we don’t see him as he really is and we need to open up to the fact that our ideas could be wrong.
Take this with Scripture. Perchance someone is a Calvinist. I think it’d be good for them to approach the Scripture and say “Is there a chance that I could be wrong on this?” Let Scripture guide your beliefs instead of your beliefs guiding Scripture. To be sure I’m not going on other people, I am an orthodox preterist. I should read the Scripture and realize I could be wrong and if so, be ready to accept correction as the text is being understood.
Thus, with that in mind, here is the prayer I pray. It’s not word for word, but the same nuances are there every night.
I start addressing the Father and I come up with several terms from Scripture that remind me who he is and some outside of Scripture. Maybe some philosophical ideas that I think show his glory as well. I refer to him as holy and Ancient of Days and the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob for instance. Then, I say “Not as I see you, but as you are, may I see you.”
Then I come to the Son. Again, I say many similar things. I will speak of him being Messiah for instance and Savior and Lord. He is the Son of God, Son of Man, and Son of David. I will then address him and say “Not as I see you, but as you are, may you be to me.”
Next, for good Trinitarians like myself, is the Holy Spirit. Now the Holy Spirit is not given as many titles in Scripture as the Father and Son, but we have some. He is the Parcalette. He is the one that comes alongside us. He is the comforter. I then pray “Not as I see you, but as you are, may you be to me.”
I then come to the Trinity as a whole. I do think it’s important to understand each person of the Trinity to the best of our ability, but it’s good to ponder the nature of the Trinitarian relationship as well. I then pray that not as I see the Trinity, but as the Trinity is, may the Trinity be to me.
After this, I come to other areas. I pray about the world and say “Not as I see the world, but as you see it, may I see it.” This is the world God has put us in to change for his glory. I want to have the best understanding of that world and see it the way God sees it so I will have the passion to do what I am to do.
Then I say the same thing about my neighbor. I want to see my fellow man the way God sees them. Now in each of these, I’m not asking for omniscience. I just believe that God sees things as they are and I want to see them the same way. Of course, I also believe he sees them as they will be, but I want to see them as they are at this point in time.
Then I pray that about myself. We can often have the hardest time seeing who we are. I want to see myself the way God sees me. I want to believe all that is true about me and get rid of all that is false about me. We Christians should be conforming our lives to truth more and more everyday.
Now some of you might not care for this kind of prayer. That’s fine. If you want to use it though, great! Of course, I do still have prayers afterwards of thanks, praise, petition, forgiveness, intercession, etc. This is the one I pray first though as it helps to remind me of the one I am approaching and how I should constantly seek truth.