Sunday, August 28, 2011

Trading Prayers

I was alone in the chapel when the young woman came in, and she sat quietly while I finished saying the rosary. Then she turned to me and spoke: “Can I ask you something?” And so she asked me questions about God and His love, and spoke of recent difficulties in her life. And in God’s presence, I spoke words which I pray were ones He would offer to this searcher, to give her hope.

When we finished speaking I offered her a copy of two of my favorite prayers. For me, they speak from my heart to God, and I feel Him return the conversation. She then took out a copy of her favorite prayer. Reading it, I offered how I could see that it easily could become a favorite of mine also.

She went out of her way, and a couple of nights later came back to the chapel to give me a copy, and thank me for our talk.

Who knows what opportunities present themselves to us when someone says: “Can I ask you something?” And who knows how well our answers will be? Perhaps the better answers are not ones we give, but God gives, as we speak to Him in prayer.

And so here below is one of my new favorites, courtesy of my late-night friend. Reading and praying it, I can feel God listening. I look forward to His response.

(I’m reasonably sure I read this prayer before, although I don’t remember when. Searching the internet, I found no one attributed to its first writing, although it seems to have been around since the early 1900’s.)

No One Needs Thee More Than I

Dearest Jesus, all Thy creatures are more worthy of Thy grace,
Than the vile and wretched sinner who now kneels before Thy Face;
Yet one claim I have upon Thee which Thou never wilt deny:
In the bounds of Thy creation no one needs Thee more than I!

Other souls have been more faithful and have served Thee better far,
Many spotless hearts more fitting for Thy gracious presence are;
Many lips devout a greeting far more fervent can supply,
But, dear Master, well Thou knowest no one needs Thee more than I!

Many loving hands have carried richer offerings to Thy Shrine,
Many generous hearts have loved Thee with a purer love than mine;
These Thy chosen ones approach Thee as the doves to covert fly,
I am utterly unworthy, but none needs Thee more than I.

Sins unnumbered, unatoned for, have made havoc in my soul,
And against me stands as witness the recording angel's roll;
All untilled has been my vineyard and its soil is hard and dry.
O my God! my only Refuge, no one needs Thee more than I!

For without Thee I am helpless, fast in sin's strong fetters caught,
Blinded by my evil passions, swayed by impulses untaught;
I can do no good unaided, it were worse than vain to try;
Come Thyself to me, sweet Jesus, no one needs Thee more than I!

Thou didst leave Thy Father's bosom to reclaim and save the lost,
Thou didst take upon Thee freely our redemption's awful cost;
Thou Thyself has called me to Thee, Thou wilt hearken to my cry;
In the bounds of Thy Creation no one needs Thee more than I!


  1. My pleasure, Elizabeth.

    Speaking of pleasure, I glanced at your blog and am happy to find someone else who enjoys reading. If you don't mind, I shall follow along.