H.H. POPE SHENOUDA III
O Lord, on the
New Year's eve, I do not want to make many promises, as through my previous
experience, I know that I shall not fulfil any, or start but not perfect!
I do not want to rely on myself; I know my weakness. I know I have many good intentions, "but to perform what is good I do not find" (Rom. 7:18).
The first thing I want, Lord, is to talk to You openly.
I want to present you my heart as it is, not as it should be. And I want to put to You my weaknesses, as they are, so that with Your grace and Holy Spirit, You take charge of them...
I do wrong if I promise that I will repent, but I cry out to You "Restore me and I will return." (Jer. 31:18).
I will be at fault if I promise to do many good deeds, but I ask You to strengthen me so that I may be able to do. I want You to work in me in order to do what You want me to... "For it is God who works in you both to will and to work." (Phil. 2:13).
Lord, at the beginning of this year, I want you to take charge of the whole year, every day of it... and I want You to take all my life Yourself and shape it in the way which conforms with Your goodness and Your holy will...
I want you to reveal to me Your will in my life. "Teach me Your statutes. Make me understand the way of Your precepts." (Ps. 119:27). "Open my eyes, that I may see wondrous things from Your law." (Ps. 119:18).
Tell me what You want and give me the strength to do it. If I do wrong and fall, excuse my weakness and hold my hand to rise.
I do not ask only for myself but also for those whom I love, whom You like most, because You chose them temples for Your Spirit. "Holy Father, protect them in Your name Sanctify them by Your truth." (John 17:11&17).
I want their names to be written in the Lamb's Book of Life.
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