Thursday, March 18, 2010

Ravishingly Lenten

"Hear my prayer, O Lord, and let my crying come unto thee." This text is set to an unfinished piece by Purcell. It's a shame he didn't get to complete it, as the extant portion shows tremendous promise. This recording is somewhat slower than many others, but the conductor beautifully draws out the luscious dissonances. Enjoy.

Hearing that, it's impossible not to recall Amulek's instruction on prayer:

Therefore may God grant unto you, my brethren, that ye may begin to exercise your faith unto repentance, that ye begin to call upon his holy name, that he would have mercy upon you;

Yea, cry unto him for mercy; for he is mighty to save.

Yea, humble yourselves, and continue in prayer unto him.

Cry unto him when ye are in your fields, yea, over all your flocks.

Cry unto him in your houses, yea, over all your household, both morning, mid-day, and evening.

Yea, cry unto him against the power of your enemies.

Yea, cry unto him against the devil, who is an enemy to all righteousness.

Cry unto him over the crops of your fields, that ye may prosper in them.

Cry over the flocks of your fields, that they may increase.

But this is not all; ye must pour out your souls in your closets, and your secret places, and in your wilderness.

Yea, and when you do not cry unto the Lord, let your hearts be full, drawn out in prayer unto him continually for your welfare, and also for the welfare of those who are around you.

And now behold, my beloved brethren, I say unto you, do not suppose that this is all; for after ye have done all these things, if ye turn away the needy, and the naked, and visit not the sick and afflicted, and impart of your substance, if ye have, to those who stand in need––I say unto you, if ye do not any of these things, behold, your prayer is vain, and availeth you nothing, and ye are as hypocrites who do deny the faith.

Therefore, if ye do not remember to be charitable, ye are as dross, which the refiners do cast out, (it being of no worth) and is trodden under foot of men.

And now, my brethren, I would that ... ye come forth and bring fruit unto repentance.

Appropriate thoughts as we continue to prepare for Holy Week––remembering to pray with our hands and feet, as well as on our knees.

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