Several years ago I was introduced to a wonderful book called The Valley of Vision. Edited by Arthur Bennett, it is a collection of prayers from a dozen well-known Puritans including John Bunyan, David Brainerd, and Charles Haddon Spurgeon. These prayers all follow a poetic structure (which my inner grammarian loves,) and I love to read through them as my heart echoes their words to God.
A prayer about the family is my current favorite, especially this excerpt:
Let those that are united to me in tender ties be precious in thy sight and devoted to thy glory. Sanctify and prosper my domestic devotion, instruction, discipline, example, that my house may be a nursery for heaven, my church a garden of the Lord, enriched with trees of righteousness of thy planting, for thy glory. (from The Valley of Vision: A Collection of Puritan Prayers & Devotions, edited by Arthur Bennett.)
This has been my prayer lately. I need constant reminders that my “domestic devotions” of laundry, cleaning, cooking, etc. are a means that God uses to sanctify me. I need to remember that my purpose in instructing and disciplining Piper is her eventual salvation and sanctification. I love the image of my home being a nursery for heaven where I am raising and training future saints. And the last part reminds me that everything I do as a woman, a wife, and a mother is for His glory.
Good stuff. I’m thankful for the Puritans and the way that centuries later, I can echo their prayers and “amen” their words.