Prayer For Good Friday

My Father,
Enlarge my heart, warm my affections, open my lips,
    supply words that proclaim ‘Love lustres at Calvary.’
There grace removes my burdens and heaps them on thy Son,
    made a transgressor, a curse, and sin for me;
There the sword of thy justice smote the man, thy fellow;
There thy infinite attributes were magnified,
    and infinite atonement was made;
There infinite punishment was due,
    and infinite punishment was endured.
Christ was all anguish that I might be all joy,
        cast off that I might be brought in,
        trodden down as an enemy
            that I might be welcomed as a friend,
        surrendered to hell’s worst
            that I might attain heaven’s best,
        stripped that I might be clothed,
        wounded that I might be healed,
        athirst that I might drink,
        tormented that I might be comforted,
        made a shame that I might inherit glory,
        entered darkness that I might have eternal light.
My Savior wept that all tears might be wiped from my eyes,
            groaned that I might have endless song,
            endured all pain that I might have unfading health,
            bore a thorned crown that I might have a glory-diadem,
            bowed his head that I might uplift mine,
            experienced reproach that I might receive welcome,
            closed his eyes in death that i might gaze on unclouded brightness.
            expired that I might for ever live.
O Father, who spared not thine only Son that thou mightest spare me,
All this transfer thy love designed and accomplished;
Help me to adore thee by lips and life.
O that my every breath might be ecstatic praise,
        my every step buoyant with delight, as I see
        my enemies crushed,
        Satan baffled, defeated, destroyed,
        sin buried in the ocean of reconciling blood,
        hell’s gates closed, heaven’s portal open.
Go forth, O conquering God, and show me the cross,
    mighty to subdue, comfort and save.

—The poem Love Lustres at Calvary from The Valley of Vision edited by Arthur Bennett

Prayer For The New Year

Length of days does not profit me except the days are passed
                in thy presence, in thy service, to thy glory.
Give me a grace that precedes, follows, guides, sustains,
                sanctifies, aids every hour,
        that I may not be one moment apart from thee,
        but may rely on thy Spirit
                to supply every thought,
                speak in every word,
                direct every step,
                prosper every work,
                build up every mote of faith,
                and give me a desire
                        to show forth thy praise,
                        testify thy love,
                        advance thy kingdom.
I launch my bark on the unknown waters of this year,
                with thee, O Father, as my harbour,
                        thee, O Son, at my helm,
                        thee, O Holy Spirit, filling my sails.
Guide me to heaven with my loins girt,
                                my lamp burning,
                                my ear open to thy calls,
                                my heart full of love,
                                my soul free.
Give me thy grace to sanctify me,
                thy comforts to cheer,
                thy wisdom to teach,
                thy right hand to guide,
                thy counsel to instruct,
                thy law to judge,
                thy presence to stabilize.
May thy fear be my awe,
                thy triumphs my joy.

—The poem New Year from The Valley of Vision edited by Arthur Bennett

The Comfort of Jesus’ Prayers

One of the most important sources of comfort with respect to the intercession of Christ in behalf of the believer is found in Jesus’ great High Priestly Prayer, which itself was a profound prayer of intercession. Remarkably, even we are mentioned in this great prayer of intercession. We read in John 17:1–9:

Father, glorify me in your own presence with the glory that I had with you before the world existed. I have manifested your name to the people whom you gave me out of the world. Yours they were, and you gave them to me, and they have kept your word. … For I have given them the words that you gave me, and they have received them and have come to know in truth that I came from you; and they have believed that you sent me. I am praying for them. I am not praying for the world but for those whom you have given me, for they are yours.

Look again at verse 9: “I am praying for them. I am not praying for the world but for those whom you have given me, for they are yours.” That’s the crux of the matter. Jesus is praying for all those who belong to God, not for everyone on the planet. The Father has chosen a people for Himself—and the same people belong to Christ as well. None of them is lost except the son of destruction—Judas—who being a son of destruction, was never God’s child to begin with. Those for whom Jesus prays are the people whom God has chosen, and none of them is lost (vv. 10–19). This includes not only the disciples in the Upper Room who witnessed Jesus’ prayer but also those of us who believe in Him today. I said that we are mentioned in Jesus’ prayer, and here we are: “I do not ask for these only, but also for those who will believe in me through their word” (v. 20). We came to believe through the words of the Apostles, and so Jesus prays for us. This is Christ’s prayer. We persevere because we are preserved by our High Priest’s intercession.

If we take great comfort in the intercessory prayer of a friend or of a pastor, how much more comfort can we experience from the full assurance that Jesus is praying for us? We know that Jesus’ prayers never fail. He knows the mind of God perfectly. He knows what to pray for so that we persevere to the end. Moreover, Jesus says the Father will give us whatever we ask for in His name (15:16). If this is so, certainly the Father will not fail to give His own beloved Son what He asks for, and He asks for us to persevere.

—Dr. R.C. Sproul

Via: Ligonier Ministries