Feb 21, 2006

walking humbly before god

Saint Francis of Assisi (1181-1226) had his problems just like the rest of us, yet whatever the circumstances, he was able to pen some of the most inspiring thoughts ever recorded. The following prayer while attributed to him is not completely verified; whether he wrote it or not, it's a winner:
Lord, make me an instrument of your peace.
Where there is hatred, let me bring love.
Where there is injury, let me bring pardon.
Where there is discord, let me bring union.
Where there is doubt, let me bring faith.
Where there is error, let me bring truth.
Where there is despair, let me bring hope.
Where there is sadness, let me bring joy.
Where there is darkness, let me bring light.

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 that we are born to eternal life.
Since our actions are being watched by unbelievers, it's critical that they observe us patterning our lives after Jesus, and not merely living as hypocrites differing little from the lost. Two short Saint Francis Quotes that help me understand how important it is for the Christian to walk in the footsteps of Jesus every day while living before an unbelieving world:
It is no use walking anywhere to preach unless our walking is our preaching.
Preach the Gospel at all times and when necessary use words.
And lastly, his most famous quote (IMHO) most of us recognize immediately. This quote is hanging on many of our walls, and in some of our hearts:
Lord grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change,
the courage to change the things I can, and the wisdom to know
the difference.


jettybetty said...

What a great reminder!! St. Francis has some great stuff.

JP said...

I second that, its by far my favorite prayer, I have it framed sitting right in front of me as I type.