John Wesley’s Sunday Evening Prayer for Families

Wesley’s written prayer for families for Sunday Evening. John wrote morning and evening prayers for families, I am offering paraphrases to my Family Ministry class

To You, the high and holy One who inhabits eternity, You are to be awed and loved by all Your servants. All your works praise You God. We especially give thanks to You for Your marvelous love in Jesus Christ, by whom You have reconciled the world to Yourself (2 Cor. 5:19). You have given us very great and precious promises (2 Peter 1:4). You have sealed them with Jesus’ blood, confirmed them by his resurrection and ascension, and by the coming of the Holy Spirit. We thank You that You have given us so many happy opportunities of knowing the truth as it is in Jesus; this mystery which was hid from ages and generations, but now revealed to them that believe.

Blessed be Your goodness for that great comfort, and for the assistance of Your Holy Spirit. Blessed be Your goodness that we have felt this comfort often in our hearts, inspiring us with holy thoughts, filling us with love and joy, and providing pleasant expectations of the glory You shall reveal. We thank You for graciously allowing us to focus on You in Your public worship. As a result we have begun, any way you look at it, a pursuit of that eternal Sabbath-rest for the people of God (Hebrews 4:9).

We offer up again our souls and bodies to You to be governed, not by our will, but Yours. Let it be always the ease and joy of our hearts to be under the direction of Your unerring wisdom, to follow Your advice, to be ruled in all things by Your holy will. Let us never distrust Your abundant kindness and tender care over us, regardless of what You have us do, or suffer, in this world.

God, purify our hearts, that we may entirely love You, and rejoice in being loved by You; that we may trust in You and absolutely give ourselves to You; and that we may be filled with constant devotion toward You. May we never sink into a carnal love of anything here below, nor be oppressed by the cares of this life. Instead, help us hate what is evil and cling to what is good (Romans 12:9). Help us use this world without abusing it. Give us a humble spirit so we may not think more highly of ourselves than we ought to think. Let our gentleness be known to all. Make us devoted to each other, delighting in doing good, showing all gentleness to everyone. Help us give everyone what we owe them, paying taxes to who taxes is due, revenue to whom revenue is due, respect to whom respect is due, honor to whom honor is due (Romans 13:9) and owing nobody anything, but loving one another. Make us so happy that we may be able to love our enemies, bless those that curse us, do good to them that hate us; to rejoice with those that do rejoice, and weep with those that weep. Craft our spirits to a quiet and steady dependence on Your good providence, so we take no thought of our lives or care for anything. Instead, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, may we make our requests known to You, our God. Help us to always pray and not give up, to give thanks in everything and offer up sacrificial praise continuously, to rejoice in the hope of Your glory, by Your endurance to gain our lives, and learn to be content whatever the circumstances. Help us to known what it is to be in need, and to have plenty in every circumstance. Instruct us to both have abundance or suffer need, enabling us to do everything through Christ, which gives us strength.

May the light of all Christians shine before others so they might glorify You, our Father which art in heaven. Send forth Your light and truth into the dark corners of the earth so all leaders might bow before You and all nations do Your service. Bless these countries and give us grace in time to bear fruit worthy of repentance. Lord, save our leaders and establish their authority in righteousness. Prosper the efforts of all those ministers who faithfully feed Your people and increase their number. May the seed that was sown this day take deep root in all our hearts so, being not forgetful hearers but doers of the word, we may be blessed by our deeds. Help us in the following week to set a guard over our mouth and keep watch over the door of our lips; and help us not be drawn to what is evil or take part in wicked deeds along with those who are evildoers (Psalm 141:3-4). Instead, knowing how we ought to live and please You, may we do this more and more.

Protect us, we urgently ask, and all our friends everywhere this night. Awaken us in the morning with good thoughts in our hearts, so the words of our Savior may abide in use and we in Him, who taught us when we pray to say:

“Our Father
Which art in heaven
Hallowed Be Your Name
Your Kingdom Come, Your Will Be Done
On Earth as it is in Heaven
Give us this day our daily bread
And forgive us our trespasses as we forgive those that trespass against us,
And lead us not into temptation but deliver us from evil
For yours is the Kingdom, power, and glory forever Amen”

About Dean G. Blevins

Dr. Dean G. Blevins currently serves as Professor of Practical Theology and Christian Discipleship at Nazarene Theological Seminary. An ordained elder, Dean has ministered in diverse settings and currently also serves at the USA Regional Education Coordinator for the Church of the Nazarene. A prolific author, Dr. Blevins recently co-wrote the textbook Discovering Discipleship and edits Didache: Faithful Teaching, a journal for Wesleyan Education.
This entry was posted in Discipleship, Family, Homes, Practical Theology, Spiritual Formation, Wesley. Bookmark the permalink.

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