Thursday, December 17, 2009

He who prays sincerely

There are some forms of spiritual life which are not absolutely essential, but prayer is of the very essence of spirituality. He that hath no prayer lacks the very breath of the life of God in the soul. I will not say that every man who prays is a Christian, but I will say that every man who prays sincerely is so; for, recollect, men may pray after a fashion, and even practice private prayer too, and yet may be deceiving themselves; for as the frogs of Egypt came up into the bedchambers, so doth hypocrisy intrude itself even into the private places where men pretend to worship God; but I do say that a cheerful constancy in sincere private devotion is such a mark of grace, that he who hath it may fairly conclude himself to be one of the Lord’s family.

From a sermon entitled "Daniel's Undaunted Courage," delivered June 14, 1868. Image by elbfoto under Creative Commons License.

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