Pray This

You re-create us in Christ, O God, to be holy, to be loving and generous, merciful, kind, and just in all our relationships in life.You re-create us in Christ, O God, so that we might be able to look you squarely in the face, to live with you and enjoy you forever. You re-create us in Christ, O God, simply because you want all of your children to be truly happy now. (Paul Chilcote, from "New Birth" in Praying in the Wesleyan Spirit) One of my favorite guides for praying with other people's words is to use this book by Paul Chilcote. In it, he takes each of John Wesley's 52 Standard Sermons and turns them into 2-3 page prayers. Wesley's sermons are brilliant, and Chilcote mentions in the introduction, if people were to read Wesley's sermons many lives would be changed (not to mention many Wesleyan churches!). But the problem is that you've got to have quite a bit of endurance for 18th century English built up to get through any of them. (Incase you're feeling adventurous, here's the text of the original New Birth sermon.) So, what he's done in this little book is great for anyone who wants to pray, particularly those of us in Wesleyan traditions, as it gives us a chance to dig into Wesley's sermons in a way that he would have been very pleased with: opening ourselves to God through prayer.