Tag Archives: help my unbelief

Practical Prayers of Agnes Sanford

Matterofprayer: A Year of Everyday Prayers – Monday, March 6, 2017

healing prayer for you

Practical Prayers of Agnes Sanford

When I hear about (or, read about) someone who prays like Agnes Sanford, I tend to be skeptical—a bit. I also hope against hope that her example in healing prayer could be true. I must admit that I do not have lots of faith. A bit of faith, yes. Sometimes, even more than a bit. But, there are times when I say with the man who came to Jesus, “Help my unbelief!”

In the case of Agnes Sanford, I have to take the word of Richard Foster. He gave witness to the fact that he sat and learned how to pray from Agnes, many times. (And, I respect Richard Foster more than I can say.)

How scary to pray, and have God’s power in our words—that’s the Almighty God, who made heaven and earth, who created life and love on a cosmic scale. Yet, that is exactly what we do and say when we pray.

At first, we have the suggestion of praying for a simple, tangible thing first, such as relief from worry, or finding something lost, or the return to health of someone who is sick. As Ms. Sanford said, “How strange it is that people who fear to do this do not hesitate to pray for the most difficult objectives of all, such as the peace of the world or the salvation of their souls!” [1]

So right. Such an odd thing, to have little confidence in God in prayer: “if they have such confidence…that they do not dare to test their powers of contacting God by praying for an easy thing, it is probable that their cosmic intercessions are of little force.” [2]

Ooo. That hits home. That hurts, Ms. Sanford.

Dear Lord, gracious God, help me to have faith like Agnes Sanford. (Or, at least more faith than I do currently.) Thank You for Ms. Sanford’s excellent example, and grant that many may learn from her books and writings. Amen.


Like what you read? Disagree? Share your thoughts with your loved ones and continue the conversation.

Why not visit my companion blogs, “the best of” A Year of Being Kind.  #PursuePEACE. My Facebook page, Pursuing Peace – Thanks! And, read my sermons from Pastor, Preacher Pray-er.

[1] Spiritual Classics, edited by Richard J. Foster and Emilie Griffin. (San Francisco, California: HarperSanFrancisco, 2000), 39.

[2] Ibid.

Give Me a Heart . . . for Thee

Matterofprayer: A Year of Everyday Prayers – Tuesday, October 13, 2015

HEART How-to-Make-a-Stained-Glass-Heart

Give Me a Heart . . . for Thee

The Oxford Book of Prayer contains within its covers an embarrassment of riches in words. From just the few dozen pages I have read so far, I can tell how amazing, how profound and moving are the prayers, the sentiments expressed. And, the people chosen and represented.

For today, I have chosen just a portion of a prayer. A snippet, so to speak, of a prayer by Dag Hammerskjold. The prayer concerns “Thy Will Be Done” (Prayer 248, page 85) [1] The prayer is about Dedication.

“Give me a pure heart—that I may see Thee./A humble heart—that I may hear Thee,/A heart of love—that I may serve Thee,/A heart of faith—that I may abide in Thee.”

Oh, Lord! What lofty sentiments. How can I even think to see You, since my heart is blackened and marred by sin? Yet, as I journey with You, by Your side, I hope to see You more and more clearly.

Humble? Humility? (Yes, I know the book that some would like to write: “Humility, and How I Attained It.” Well, that is not me.) But, I dearly want to draw nearer to You, Lord. I want to be closer to You. That way, I’ll be able to hear Your words.

“A heart of love.” Ah, love! I yearn to be loved. I want to be loved. Yet, my low self-esteem keeps dogging my heels. Thank God, the love You’ve given to me overflows into my inner self, that deep, inner person, deep within.

Faith! And, abiding? Oh, to have more faith! I am reminded of the man from the Gospel of Mark, chapter 9, who said, “Lord, I believe! Help my unbelief!” Dear Lord Jesus, help me to have more faith. Then, perhaps, I will grope my way towards abiding with You.

Lord, in Your mercy, hear my fervent prayers.


Like what you read? Disagree? Share your thoughts with your loved ones and continue the conversation.

Why not visit my sister blogs, “the best of” A Year of Being Kind.   @chaplaineliza And, read my sermons from Pastor, Preacher Pray-er

[1] The Oxford Book of Prayer, edited by George Appleton. (New York: Oxford University Press, reissued 2009), 85.