October 18, 2007

Cheerfulness and the Value of Repetition

Every weekday afternoon our entire school prays the office of Vespers, and I use the Collect for the Week each day. So it's sad that it took me until Wednesday of this week to finally understand one of the things being prayed for in the Collect for Trinity 19:

Almighty and merciful God, of Your bountiful goodness keep from us all things that may hurt us that we, being ready in both body and soul, may cheerfully accomplish whatever You would have us do; through Jesus Christ, Your Son, our Lord, who lives and reigns with You and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever.
What grabbed me was the word "cheerfully." We have our callings (vocations), but God does not just give us grace to do them; by the Spirit we are led to do them cheerfully. It made me think how often I do the right thing only because it is my duty. This collect is teaching me to ask that I would be made ready in my soul to accept with contentment and a glad heart what is that duty, and rejoice that it is given to me. It will take a lifetime of prayer, I suspect.

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