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The Prayer of Surrender

By William M. Clow


      "...Moses knew not that the skin of his face shone while he talked with him"

      (Exod. 34:29).

      But there is a height in prayer above communion. What shall I call it? It may be named the prayer of surrender. Very few ever utter that prayer to its utmost syllable. Few ever really lay themselves, spirit and soul and body on God's altar. We are always withholding something, keeping back from God some dear and cherished possession, some gift or talent or power, some love or pleasure or passion. We will not yield up some one dear and tightly held joy Yet when we do pray this prayer we pass on to an experience, which seals us with a seal that cannot be broken, to the service of God for ever. Then on the transparent mirror of the face the light leaps and flashes, and some of it abides. That is the secret of that heavenly and almost intolerable radiance on the face of Moses which men feared to look upon. He had come out of that most holy place and offered up his prayer of surrender in those solemn words, "But if not...blot out my name from Thy book." That is why Stephen's face shone in the council. His clear and discerning mind saw his martyr death before him, and he yielded himself up to God's will. Could we have seen Paul's face when he heard God's words, "My grace is sufficient for thee," and meekly accepted God's will, we would have seen the sheen of the transfiguring light also upon it. He did not know whether he was "in the body" or "out of it." That is why Christ's face shone as He prayed. And that is how our faces also shall be transfigured.

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