The Most Bitter of Bitter Days–A Prayer for Mercy

CPG 3926: Precatio (ed. K.G. Phrantzoles, Ὁσίου Ἐφραίμ τοῦ Σύρου ἔργα, vol. 2 [Thessaloniki: To Perivoli tis Panagias, 1989], 44-45.

I have sinned against heaven and before Thee, O Lord God Almighty! I am no longer worthy to be called Thy son; nor to look up and behold the height of heaven, because of the multitude of mine iniquities; nor to utter Thy glorious name with my sinful lips. For I have made myself unworthy of both heaven and earth by angering Thee, the good Master.

I beseech Thee, O Lord, I beseech Thee: cast me not away from Thy presence, and depart not from me, lest I perish. For if Thy grace did not protect me, I would have already perished, and I would now be as dust before the wind; I would vanish as one who was never born.

From the moment I forsook Thy path I have not seen a single good day. For where there is sin, even if a day seems good, it is actually the most bitter of days.

But from this day forward I hope in Thy grace, that Thou wilt give heed to my salvation. I fall down before Thee in supplication: receive me—I who have wandered from the path of righteousness.

Pour out upon me the multitude of Thy compassions, as Thou didst upon the prodigal son; for I have brought shame to my life by squandering the riches of Thy grace. Have mercy on me, O God, and forgive me my misspent life. Have compassion on me, as upon the sinful woman, the publican, and the thief. For these, in their life, were rejected by all; but Thou, O Lord, didst receive them and make them inhabitants of Paradise. Receive, then, my repentance also—Thine unprofitable servant. For, I, too, have been rejected by all; and Thou hast come, O Lord, not to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance.

To Thee is due glory unto the ages of ages. Amen.

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