by: Dick Cain
God has used the Book of Common Prayer and its wonderful collects (prayers of preparation) written mostly by Thomas Cranmer to enrich my own prayer life and walk with God.
The prayer written for the Sunday closest to November 16 is my personal favorite:
Blessed Lord, who has caused all Holy Scriptures
to be written for our learning,
grant us that we may hear, read, mark,
learn, and inwardly digest them
in such a way that by perseverance
and encouragement of Your holy Word,
we may embrace and ever hold fast
the blessed hope of everlasting life,
which You have given us in our Savior Jesus Christ. Amen.
Paul Zahl, in his book The Collects of Thomas Cranmer, offers us a rationale for this short prayer: “To love and learn the Bible, not for its own sake, but for the sake of the cause for which it was written: Our salvation, perseverance and comfort” (2 Timothy 3:14-15; Romans 15:4)
Jonathan Edwards expressed this same commitment to love and learn God’s Word, in one of his 70 resolutions which he started writing when he was 19 years old back in 1722 AD.
“Resolved to study the Scriptures so steadily, constantly, and frequently as that I may find and plainly perceive myself to grow in the knowledge of the same.”
Pray that God would instill in you and those you love this same hunger for the Word of the Lord. That we would hear it, read it, study it, meditate on it, and memorize it.
May the conviction of truth, the consecration of our hearts, real heart-felt communion with Christ, and greater confidence in his love result in our lives as we open ourselves to the Holy Spirit speaking to us in the Scriptures.