beach at St. Simons Island
photo by Linda McCloud+
In The Imitation of Christ, written in approximately 1441 by Thomas a` Kempis, we have this prayer which still speaks to those who seek God:
Strengthen me, O God,
by the grace of the Holy Spirit.
Make my inner self strong,
and empty my heart of all
useless anxiety and distress.
May I not be drawn away by conflicting desires,
be they worthless or prized,
but may I consider them all
as passing things and
I too as passing with them.
Nothing under the sun is lasting here
where all is vanity and vexation of spirit.
Oh, how wise is the person who thinks this way!
Give me, O Lord,
heavenly wisdom that
more than anything else
I may learn to seek and to find you,
to taste and to love you above all things,
and to understand all other things as they are,
as your wisdom has ordained them to be.
Give me discretion to avoid
those who puff me up with flattery
and the patience to bear with
those who work against me.
It is great wisdom not to be tossed
thither and yon by windy words
nor to give ear to the falsely flattering serpent.
May we each go confidently
along the path he has started! Amen.
The Rev. Linda McCloud
The Episcopal Church of Our Savior at Honey Creek