Looking forward to the New Year

As we say goodbye to 2006 and look ahead to 2007 I am reminded of the prayer found in The Valley of Vision: A Collection of Puritan Prayers & Devotions. May our hearts have the same desire in the year to come:

"O Lord, 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, aides 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 your calls,
my heart full of love,
my soul free.

Give me grace to sanctify me,
thy comfort 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."

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