Monday Matines: The Prayer of John Chrysostom
For the past several years, I have loved reading from the Book of Common Prayer.
If you are unfamiliar with this book, it is an old, old prayer book of the Anglican Church. It contains all of the liturgies from the church year. But the real jewel of the book is the daily office. The daily office is a series of prayers and readings from the Psalms, Old Testament, New Testament, and Gospels. The readings follow the church calendar.
The thing that I have been most impressed by as I read through these texts is the uncanny way in which The texts seem to connect with my life despite the fact that their order has been set for hundreds of years. In particular I love one of the final prayers in the daily office. It is the prayer of John Chrysostom (an ancient saint of the church).
ALMIGHTY God, who hast given us grace at this time with one accord to make our common supplications unto thee; and dost promise that when two or three are gathered together in thy Name thou wilt grant their requests; Fulfil now, O Lord, the desires and petitions of thy servants, as may be most expedient for them; granting us in this world knowledge of thy truth, and in the world to come life everlasting. Amen.
I love this prayer. I love the connection between my personal time with Christ and the corporate nature of our faith. I love the way it acknowledges what our true needs are.
Also while I am talking about the Book of Common Prayer, I want to point out a couple of resources available for the 21st century christian to experience this awesome resources. Mission St. Clare has a great website that has both the written and audio version of each days prayer as well as an iPhoneand Android app that sets the daily office up for you with the scripture already integrated in.