A Simple Prayer for Lent

We've entered into Great Lent.  Most people are familiar with the idea of "giving up something" for lent or fasting but Lent is also a time of increased prayer and almsgiving.

I want to take just a moment to talk about increasing prayer. The other night at the Soup Supper and Talk my priest said that we can increase our prayers through repetitive prayers.  He specifically mentioned the Jesus prayer and the most simplest prayer of all "Lord have mercy".

The Jesus Prayer is a simple prayer that is perfect for increasing prayer during Lent.

The Jesus prayer is "Lord Jesus Christ, Son of God, have mercy on me, a sinner."

If you think in terms of mercy being "not given what you deserve" , then it might seem that our simplest prayer is just a cry to avoid punishment for sins.  That's more a judicial or legal term view.

But the words in Hebrew and Greek that are translated into our English word "mercy" have deeper broader meanings.  The Hebrew word means lovingkindness.  In Greek the word is closely related to the word for oil.  Olive oil is used for food, for lamps, for annointing, and for healing.

When pray "Lord have mercy," we are asking God to pour out his lovingkindness on us to heal us, to illumine us, to bless us and to provide for us.

I love the Jesus prayer.  It is simple. It is beautiful.  It can be powerful.  On Sunday at church the choir sang this prayer as prepared for communion.  I found this version on you tube. This is similar enough that I think you get the idea.

If you would like more information on the Jesus Prayer, I recommend this video with Frederica Matthews-Greene.

I am linking this post up to 40 Days of Seeking Him hosted by Day by Day in Our World.  


  1. Thanks so much for linking up to the 40 Days of Seeking Him meme this week.

    Guess what? You are going to be featured in this coming week's post (live tomorrow!)


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