A Prayer for Preachers

This prayer is written by Augustine of Hippo and can be found in his spiritual autobiography Confessions. As a preacher, it’s a prayer that I find myself needing to pray.

“Lord my God, ‘h300px-Sandro_Botticelli_050ear my prayer’ (Ps. 60:2), may your mercy attend to my longing which burns not for my personal advantage but desires to be of use in love to the brethren. You see in my heart that this is the case. Let me offer you in sacrifice the service of my thinking and my tongue, and grant that which I am to offer, ‘for I am poor and needy’ (Ps. 65:15; 85:1). You are ‘rich to all who call upon you’ (Rom. 10:12). You have no cares but take care of us. Circumcise my lips (cf. Exod. 6:12), inwardly and outwardly, from all rashness and falsehood. May your scriptures be my pure delight, so that I am not deceived in them and do not lead others astray in interpreting them… See, your voice is my joy, your voice is better than a wealth of pleasures (Ps. 118:22). Grant what I love; for I love it, and that love was your gift.”

– St. Augustine, Confessions, Book XI. ii (3)

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