As Christians, we are on a journey, learning how to die to ourselves, our flesh, the things that separate us from God. It’s not always talked about, but there it is. We are learning how to die. In other words, we aren’t here to please ourselves, we aren’t here to follow people, we aren’t here to impress others with our spiritual gifts, we are only here to follow Jesus. But Lord knows, we need Jesus to follow Jesus and prayer helps.
A year ago, I came across the “Prayer of St. Francis of Assisi” while I was in Italy. I was attending a creative school where we learned how to use the arts for missions, and during one of our assignments we were given this prayer and asked to re-create it using music, art, and dance (scroll down to see the prayer).
Although, I liked the idea of re-wording it for the people of today, this assignment was a struggle for me because I felt his original words were perfect enough. I didn’t want to ruin it by trying to make it my own. Yet, as I sat down at my piano, staring at his words, it dawned on me that this man’s prayer to live a selfless life is the same prayer within my heart. For the same Jesus who lived in him then, lives in me now and today.
In that moment, a song came and it was my own prayer, but it was also the desire of God for my life, that I be selfless.
Princesses, God desires that we take up our cross and follow Him (Luke 9:23), that we die to our desires (Galatians 5:24), that like a teeter-totter at a playground, as He becomes greater in our lives, we become less (Mark 8:35).
For we are here not for ourselves, but for Him and for His purpose. We are here to tell others of our glorious Jesus and how He’s transformed us, what He has delivered us from, how real He is, how much He loves us, and most important of all, we are here to know God and to love Him.
There are now four prayers I love to pray! It’s amazing to believe so many of our brothers and sisters, hundreds of years ago, prayed the very words then within our hearts today. Christ was with them then and He is with us now! To live for Christ is to die to ourselves.
O I want to be as the ocean, willing to go where God leads, in or out, as fluid as breath, without hesitation, without grumbling or arguing, without questioning… just face-down at His feet always saying
Lord, have your way.
You are God and I am not.
I am not my own for I am yours.
I have been crucified with Christ. It is no longer I who live, but Christ who lives in me. And the life I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me. – Galations 2:20
Princesses, my prayer is that we always seek Him and seek to know Him, and in our journey, desire to die to the things that would keep us from Him and from His purpose for us. We are His Princesses, beloved daughters whom He loves. May nothing distract us or turn us from His gaze, and may He teach us how to die so we may live. And thank you Lord, for these amazing people who you have given these prayers, which we can hold onto as our own. May we speak these words with conviction and sincerity, truly longing to be used by you in whatever way you desire. We love you, Jesus!! Amen.
Download a printable version of these prayers. :)
1. St. Francis of Assisi Prayer
“Lord, make me an instrument of thy peace.
Where there is hatred, let me sow love;
Where there is injury, pardon;
Where there is doubt, faith;
Where there is despair, hope;
Where there is darkness, light;
Where there is sadness, joy.
O Divine Master, grant that I may not so much seek
To be consoled as to console,
To be understood as to understand,
To be loved as to love;
For it is in giving that we receive;
It is in pardoning that we are pardoned;
It is in dying to self that we are born to eternal life.
2. Wesley Covenant Prayer
“I am no longer my own, but yours.
Put me to what you will, rank me with whom you will;
put me to doing, put me to suffering;
let me be employed for you, or laid aside for you,
exalted for you, or brought low for you;
let me be full, let me be empty,
let me have all things, let me have nothing:
I freely and wholeheartedly yield all things
to your pleasure and disposal.
And now, glorious and blessed God,
Father, Son and Holy Spirit,
you are mine and I am yours.
So be it.
And the covenant now made on earth,
let it be ratified in heaven.
3. Serenity Prayer
“God, give me grace to accept with serenity
the things that cannot be changed,
Courage to change the things
which should be changed,
and the Wisdom to distinguish
the one from the other.
Living one day at a time,
Enjoying one moment at a time,
Accepting hardship as a pathway to peace,
Taking, as Jesus did,
This sinful world as it is,
Not as I would have it,
Trusting that You will make all things right,
If I surrender to Your will,
So that I may be reasonably happy in this life,
And supremely happy with You forever in the next.
4. The Lord’s Prayer
- “Our Father, which art in heaven,
hallowed be thy name;
thy kingdom come;
thy will be done,
in earth as it is in heaven.
Give us this day our daily bread.
And forgive us our trespasses,
as we forgive them that trespass against us.
And lead us not into temptation;
but deliver us from evil.
For thine is the kingdom,
the power, and the glory,
for ever and ever.
- Download a printable version of these prayers. :)