Daily Archives: January 8, 2011

Prayer: What Is Prayer?

Prayer is the soul’s sincere desire,
Uttered, or unexpressed–
The motion of a hidden fire
…That trembles in the breast.

Prayer is the burden of a sigh,
The falling of a tear–
The upward glancing of the eye,
When none but God is near
Prayer is the simplest form of speech
That infants lips can try–

Prayer the sublimest strains that reach,
The Majesty on high.
Prayer is the contrite sinner’s voice
Returning from his ways,
While angels in their songs rejoice,

And cry, “Behold, he prays!”
Prayer is the Christian’s vital breath–
The Christians’s native air–
His watchword at the gates of death–
He enters heaven with prayer.

The saints in prayer appear as one
In word, and deed, and mind,
While the Father and the Son
Sweet fellowship they find.

Nor prayer is made by man alone–
The Holy Spirit pleads–
And Jesus, on the eternal throne,
For sinners intercedes.
O Thou by whom we come to God–
The life, the truth, the way!
The path of prayer Thyself hast trod;
Lord, teach us how to pray!

~ James Montgomery