O Lord, blessed fountain of all happiness and joy, draw near to me this morning in Your great mercy. All creature-comforts are emanations from You. Your favour is life; Your displeasure is worse than death. In losing You, we lose our all; in having You, we can lack nothing.
I have to acknowledge, with shame and confusion of face, that I have not thus been seeking my true enjoyment in You. I have been in pursuit of fleeting shadows, which one by one have eluded my grasp. I have been worshiping and serving the creature more than the Creator, who is “God over all, blessed forevermore.” Lord, bring me to see that nothing short of Yourself can satisfy the longings and desires of my immortal nature.
Wean me from what is perishable. Let me reverentially acquiesce in whatever means You may employ to bring my wandering heart back to You, O you who are the alone-satisfying portion of my soul. Rather, Lord, would I submit to the hardest discipline than listen to the withering words, “Ephraim is joined to idols: let him alone.” Let me feel that Your presence and love can compensate for the loss of all earthly joys. As prop after prop which has gladdened my pilgrimage totters and falls, may I know what it is to “dwell in the secret place of the Most High, and to abide under the shadow of the Almighty.”
Adapted from the Rev. John McDuff, D.D., The Morning Watches, 1852.