This is the concluding from The Life of God in the Soul of Man by Henry Scougal, amplified and modernized, shared in the hope that it is as convicting and instructive to you as it was to me. Let us resolve together, in this prayer and those like it, to approach God with a renewed and expanded seriousness of purpose and worship…
O most gracious God, Father and Fountain of mercy and goodness. You have blessed us with the knowledge of true joy in your presence and the way of life that leads to it. Excite in our souls only the desires which lead us to diligently pursue knowledge of you, O God, such that we will be content in holiness and discontent without it. Let us neither presume on our own strength, nor distrust thy divine assistance, but while we are chasing the activities of the day (whether perceived as important or mundane), teach us still to depend entirely on You for success.
Guide us into obedience
Open our eyes, O God, and teach us from Your law. Bless us with an exact and tender sense of our duty to You and to our fellow men, and a knowledge to discern perverse things — anything that would twist your will for us and for creation, and change what You made beautiful into a disgust in Your eyes. O that our ways would be directed in all things to keep Your statues, then we would not be ashamed when we evaluate our lives in light of your commandments or when we see You face-to-face. Invade and take possession of our hearts with a generous and holy disdain (a hatred, a disgust) for all the poor (unholy and unsatisfying and unworthy) enjoyments which this world holds out to allure us, that they may never be able to draw us to them, or captivate our hearts, or betray us into sin. Turn away our eyes from beholding vanity, from gazing long and hard on ourselves or others, only at You, and set in stone Your law in our hearts. Fill our souls with such a deep sense and full persuasion of those great truths which You have revealed in Your gospel, as may influence and regulate our whole conversation. Grant to us that the life which we live on earth, from this day forward, we would live through faith in the Son of God, who loves us and gave Himself up for us (Galatians 2:20).
Give us a life-changing love for you
O that the infinite perfections of Thy blessed nature, and the astonishing expressions of Thy goodness and love which we see in your Word and in our lives may conquer and overpower our hearts, that our hearts may be constantly rising toward Thee in flames of the most devout affection. May those affections only enlarge themselves in our hearts, and be revealed in sincere and eager love toward all people around us, for Your sake. And may we cleanse ourselves from all filthiness of flesh and spirit, pursuing holiness in reverent fear, without which we can never hope to behold and enjoy Thee.
Draw us, in humility, to yourself
Finally, O God, grant that the consideration of who and what You are and who and what we ourselves are, may both humble and lay us low before Thee. May this revelation stir up in us the strongest and most ardent aspirations to run to you, to pursue you, to hold on to you. We desire to resign, to surrender ourselves to the freedom of your Holy Spirit in our lives to have His way in all things. Lead us in Your truth, and teach us, for You are the God of our salvation. Guide us with Your intimate counsel as we submit and listen to You, and afterwards receive us unto glory, owing entirely to the merits and intercession (His work on the cross and His righteousness) of Your blessed Son, our Savior.
Amen, and amen!