"I praise you as my constant helper, and call on you as my loving protector."
Living in a hostile world is not easy and often we will find ourselves crying out to God like King David to come to our aid. We need his assistance, but most of all his protection.
One prayer that expresses all of these sentiments is a prayer attributed to Pope Clement XI in 1721. It is usually titled, “A Universal Prayer for All Things Necessary to Salvation,” and perfectly captures the heart which begs God for mercy, love and shelter in times of strife. Below is an adapted version of Clement’s prayer highlighting God’s fatherly protection over all of us who cry out to him.
Lord, I believe in you: increase my faith.
I trust in you: strengthen my trust.
I love you: let me love you more and more.
I am sorry for my sins: deepen my sorrow.
I worship you as my first beginning, I long for you as my last end, I praise you as my constant helper, and call on you as my loving protector.
Guide me by your wisdom, correct me with your justice, comfort me with your mercy, protect me with your power.
I offer you, Lord, my thoughts: to be fixed on you;
My words: to have you for their theme;
My actions: to reflect my love for you;
My sufferings: to be endured for your greater glory.
I want to do what you ask of me: In the way you ask, for as long as you ask, because you ask it.
Lord, enlighten my understanding, strengthen my will, purify my heart, and make me holy. Help me to repent of my past sins and to resist temptation in the future.
Help me to rise above my human weaknesses and to grow stronger as a Christian.
Make me prudent in planning, courageous in taking risks. Make me patient in suffering, unassuming in prosperity.
Put me on guard against my human weaknesses.Let me cherish your love for me, keep your law, and come at last to your salvation.
Teach me to realize that this world is passing, that my true future is the happiness of heaven, that life on earth is short, and the life to come eternal.
Grant this through Christ our Lord. Amen.