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Effort in Prayer

By Mary Wilder Tileston

      Continue in prayer, and watch in the same.
      COLOSSIANS 4:2

      BUT if distractions manifold prevail,
      And if in this we must confess we fail,
      Grant us to keep at least a prompt desire,
      Continual readiness for prayer and praise,
      An altar heaped and waiting to take fire
      With the least spark, and leap into a blaze.

      WHEN the set time comes round for prayer, it may be, and often is, the case that the mind is de-pressed, and finds it a hard struggle to raise itself up to communion with God. Your purpose is to hold communion with the Infinite Wisdom and Infinite Love; can you do this, or even attempt this, without coming away from the exercise brighter, calmer, hap-pier, stronger against evil? Make a vigorous effort to throw your whole soul into some very short petition, and the spirit of inertness and heaviness shall be ex-orcised. But if not, and thy mind be dry to the end, do not disquiet thyself. If only thou makest a sincere effort to draw near to God, all shall be well. He sees that thou hast a will to pray, and accounts the will for the deed.

      Pray hardest when it is hardest to pray.

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