Note: As a personal, spiritual discipline, reviving my practice in the Lenten season of 2017, I revise the prayers I wrote then for each of the forty days of this Lent; each petition focusing on a theme, a concern weighing on my mind and heart or a care of my soul and spirit.
On (re-)learning to pray (being a meditation on Luke 11.1-4)…
O Jesus, Your disciples bid, “Lord, teach us to pray.” You answered with what we call The Lord’s Prayer. Though, surely, You did not mean it to be so-named. For, in giving it to us, it is The Lord’s Disciples’ Prayer.
So, O Jesus, countless are the times I have prayed, “Our Father, Who art in heaven…”
Still, O Jesus, numberless, too, are the times when I, thus saying, have continued with a mouth, as the psalmist laments, as dry as a discarded potsherd, and with a gravelly voice laden with care, whose sound I despise, uttering feeble words of rote petitions and intercessions; passionless, lifeless, ghostly orisons without pattern or purpose.
O Jesus, though weak my flesh, as my spirit is willing, I beseech You to refresh my mouth, revive my voice, renew my words!
O Jesus, today, teach me to pray!
Illustration: The Lord’s Prayer (Le Pater Noster), James Tissot (1836-1902)