For The Christian Blogger

Saint Ephraim the Syrian (sometimes spelled Ephrem) was a fourth century deacon from the Syrian city of Nisibis. He is also, not coincidentally from the point of view of why this post is appearing, the name-saint I chose for my recent Chrismation.

His prayer:

The holy fathers, who loved God and became accomplished in sufferings and temptations, received from the Heav­enly King imperishable crowns with glory and praise.

But I, who am miserable, sin without any temp­tation; I irritate and embitter my Master.

However, having learned through experience of Thy vast and unutterable compassion, 0 Lord, I beseech the greatness of Thy grace. Save me and grant Thy servant his heart’s request, from the treasures of Thy loving-kindness, that Thy grace might ceaselessly stream forth in my heart and lips like a river; that my heart might, through Thy grace, become a pure and undefiled temple that receives in itself the heavenly King; that the finger of grace might set my tongue perpetually in motion, like the string of a lyre, to the service of Thy glory, 0 Lover of mankind; and that I may ceaselessly, throughout the days of my life, glorify and bless Thee with love with both heart and lips.

O Christ the Savior! Grant me my heart’s request, that my tongue might become like unto a sweet-sounding flute; that by comforting, enlight­ening and educating others I might payoff a small portion of my great debt and, protected by Thy mercy, I might be saved when every soul is set trembling before Thy terrifying glory.

Verily, 0 Master, only-begotten Son of God, hearken unto me and accept the petition of Thy servant as an offering. I, a sinner, am saved by Thy grace. To Thee Who savest a sinner by Thy compas­sion, is due all glory unto the ages.

It seems to me the middle (longer) paragraphs are especially applicable for the task at hand. That before putting our heart, mind, and more importantly before putting our fingers to key we might offer this prayer as he suggested.

This little prayer was taken from Spiritual Psalter or Reflections on God from the Works of our Holy Father St. Ephraim the Syrian, Arranged in the Manner of the Psalms of David, Together with the Life of St. Ephrem

It seems to me this little book should be a best seller. I find it hard to understand how it’s not on almost every bookshelf.

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  1. Thank you for the beautiful prayer. I’ll have to take a look at this book, which such a high recommendation! Thanks for submitting this to the Christian Carnival!

  2. Micky says:

    Over 3 years ago I dropped into a black hole – four months of absolute terror. I wanted to end my life, but somehow [Holy Spirit], I reached out to a friend who took me to hospital. I had three visits [hospital] in four months – I actually thought I was in hell.

    I imagine I was going through some sort of metamorphosis [mental, physical & spiritual]. I had been seeing a therapist [1994] on a regular basis (Family of Origin & EMDR), up until this point in time. I actually thought I would be locked away – but the hospital staffs were very supportive [I had no control over my process]. I was released from hospital 16th September 2004, but my fear, pain & shame had only subsided a little.

    I remember this particular morning waking up [home] & my process would start up again [fear, pain, & shame]. No one could help me, not even my therapist [I was terrified]. I asked Jesus Christ to have mercy on me & forgive me my sins. Slowly, all my fear has dissipated & I believe Jesus delivered me from my “psychological prison.”

    I am a practicing Catholic & the Holy Spirit is my friend & strength; every day since then has been a joy & blessing. I deserve to go to hell for the life I have led, but Jesus through His sacrifice on the cross, delivered me from my inequities. John 3: 8, John 15: 26, are verses I can relate to, organically.

    He’s a real person who is with me all the time. I have so much joy & peace in my life to day – after a childhood spent in orphanages. God loves me so much. Fear, pain & guilt are no longer my constant companions. I just wanted to share my experience with you (Luke 8: 16-17).


  3. DebD says:

    I love my copy, but don’t pull it out as often as I should.