Martin Chemnitz on prayer and the desires of our hearts

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... And therefore the words which we use in praying, do by a kind of advertisement lead us to that consideration, that so the desire of our heart may be rightly informed. Now the heart in prayer ought to be penitent and humble. But because we do for the most part rush upon this exercise of prayer, without due consideration of our sins and unworthiness: therefore the rehearsing of words is profitable, whereunto if the mind give heed, that we may pray with the Spirit and with the understanding also, 1. Cor. 1.15. then will the meditation thereof prepare the heart to serious repentance and to true humility. The desires of our heart are commonly out of order, so as oftentimes men neither think upon the order, nor on the end of those things they are to require: but the words which we use in prayer doe advertise us of those things we are to think upon when we pray.

And doubtless the rehearsing and meditation of God’s promises doth stir up, kindle, and increase our faith. We are often slow to prayer, and in praying cold and drowsy, neither do we come unto God with the devotion of mind we ought to do. But when as in praying we repeat the words, by diligent meditation thereon, and by due consideration of the promise and commandment, our mind is moved to lift up it self unto God, our devotion is kindled, and being once kindled is continued and increased. ...

For more, see Martin Chemnitz on prayer and the desires of our hearts.
 

Reformed Covenanter

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