Paradoxes

O Changeless God,

Under the conviction of Your Spirit we learn that the more we do, the worse we are,

the more we know, the less we know,

the more holiness we have, the more sinful we are,

the more we love, the more there is to love.

O wretched people that we are!

O Lord, we have wild hearts, and cannot stand before You;

We are like a bird before a man.

How little we love Your truth and ways!

We neglect prayer, by thinking we have prayed enough and earnestly,

by knowing You have saved our souls.

 

Of all hypocrites, grant that we may not be evangelical hypocrites,

who sin more safely because grace abounds,

who tell our lusts that Christ's blood cleanses them,

who reason that God cannot cast us into hell, for we are saved,

who love evangelical preaching, churches, Christians, but live unholily.

 

Our minds are buckets without bottoms, with no spiritual understanding,

no desire for the Lord's Day, ever learning but never reaching the truth,

always at the gospel-well but never holding water.

Our consciences are without conviction or contrition, with nothing to repent of.

Our wills are without power of decision or resolution.

Our hearts are without affection, and full of leaks.

Our memories have no retention, so we forget easily the lessons learned,

and Your truths seep away.

Give us  broken hearts that yet carries home the water of grace.

Amen.