Thou knowest my great unfitness for service, my present deadness,
my inability to do anything for Thy glory, my distressing coldness of heart.
I am weak, ignorant, unprofitable, and loathe and abhor myself.
I am at a loss to know what thou wouldest have me do, for I feel amazingly deserted by thee,
and sense thy presence so little;
Thou makest me possess the sins of my youth, and the dreadful sin of my nature, so that I feel all sin,
I cannot think or act but every motion is sin.
Return again with showers of converting grace to a poor gospel-abusing sinner.
Help my soul to breathe after holiness, after a constant devotedness to thee,
after growth in grace more abundantly every day.
O Lord, I am lost in the pursuit of this blessedness, and am ready to sink because I fall short of my desire;
Help me to hold out a little longer,
until the happy hour of deliverance comes, for I cannot lift my soul to thee if thou of thy goodness bring me not nigh.
Help me to be diffident, watchful, tender, lest I offend my blessed Friend
in thought and behavior; I confide in thee and lean upon thee, and need thee at all times to assist and lead me.
O that all my distresses and apprehensions might prove
but Christ’s school to make me fit for greater service by teaching me the great lesson of humility.
[This prayer, “Need of Grace,” is from The Valley of Vision, edited by Arthur Bennett]