I read this prayer by A.W. Tozer this morning and it felt like I was reading a foreign language. Not because of the author's use of old English words like "Thy" and "Thou" but because the prayer itself was so humble and self-effacing. How often do I pray for my own success and take credit for my own achievements? How often do I secretly wish that others (the ones I don't like or disagree with) wouldn't do quite so well or would flat out fail? (Look at all the reality shows which play up when people lose, make a mistake, trip and fall and how we are urged to have a nice, long laugh at their expense.) Or during the political season where the candidate's goal is not only to build themselves up, but to tear the other person down? Then here's Tozer talking about praying for the success of others and not focusing on his great attributes (of which he had many) but instead focusing on being a humble servant of God and giving God the glory. Refreshing indeed!
Here's the powerful prayer by Tozer:
"Dear Lord, I refuse henceforth to compete with any of Thy servants. They have congregations larger than mine. So be it. I rejoice in their success. They have greater gifts. Very well. That is not in their power nor in mine. I am humbly grateful for their greater gifts and my smaller ones. I only pray that I may use to Thy glory such modest gifts as I possess. I will not compare myself with any, nor try to build up my self-esteem by noting where I may excel one or another in Thy holy work. I herewith make a blanket disavowal of all intrinsic worth. I am but an unprofitable servant. I gladly go to the foot of the class and own myself the least of Thy people. If I err in my self judgment and actually underestimate myself I do not want to know it. I purpose to pray for others and to rejoice in their prosperity as if it were my own. And indeed it is my own if it is Thine own, for what is Thine is mine, and while one plants and another waters it is Thou alone that giveth the increase."
The Price of Neglect, 104-105.
Amen (So be it) Tozer, AMEN!
-Hope A. Horner
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A.W. who? http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/A_W_Tozer )