The prayer of illumination is one of the most important things we do on Sunday mornings. In this prayer we ask God to reveal His Word to us through the Holy Spirit. This is so very important because apart from the Holy Spirit peeling the scales from our eyes we cannot see the truth of scripture. And apart from the Word of God we cannot be sanctified. And Apart from sanctification we cannot be saved! Praying in reliance of God and God alone is vital to the Christian life when we approach His Word. At Sun Valley Church we typically have a spoken prayer during this time, but as for all the different liturgical elements, we sometimes sing them. Here is a song I rewrote that we use as a prayer of illumination.
O Word of God incarnate, O Wisdom from on high,
O Truth unchanged, unchanging, O Light of our dark sky:
We praise you for the radiance, that from the hallowed page,
A lantern to our footsteps, shines on from age to age.
The church from you, our Savior, received the gift divine,
And still that light is lifted o’er all the earth to shine.
It is the sacred vessel where gems of truth are stored;
It is the heaven-drawn picture of Christ, the living Word.
The Scripture is a banner before God’s host unfurled;
It is a shining beacon above the darkling world.
It is the chart and compass that o’er life’s surging tide,
Mid mists and rocks and quicksands, to you, O Christ, will guide.
O make your church, dear Savior, a lamp of purest gold,
To bear before the nations your true light as of old.
O teach your wandering pilgrims by this their path to trace,
Till, clouds and darkness ended, they see you face to face.
(c) Craig Harris, 2012