Posted by: ritagone | May 24, 2017

Peter Marshall’s Senate prayer on February 10, 1947:

Another great prayer from my morning devotional book of prayers written and then spoken by Peter Marshall, appointed the chaplain of the Senate in 1946 and serving until his sudden death from a heart attack in 1949.  This prayer was offered on February 10, 1947, and, as usual, I think it is extremely applicable and pertinent to our situation today.  So, read it and pray it for yourself and savor it:



O Lord, teach us to number our days that we may apply our hearts unto wisdom.  Time is short, and no one of us knows how little time he has left.  May we be found using wisely our time, our talents, and our strength.

Break to us this day the “bread of life.”  Our hearts are hungry, as are the hearts of people everywhere.  Save us from thinking, even for a moment, that we can feed our souls on things.  Save us from the vain delusion that the piling up of wealth or comforts can satisfy.

Save these, Thy servants, the chosen of the people, from the tyranny of the nonessential, from the weary round of that which saps strength, frays nerves, shortens life, and adds nothing to their usefulness to Thee and to this Nation.  Help them to give themselves to the important and to recognize the trivial when they see it.  Give them the courage to say “No” to everything that makes it more difficult to say “Yes” to Thee.  For Jesus’ sake.  Amen.



How terse and how tightly Marshall wrote (and prayed), and yet how profound what he had to say.  Little did he know when he wrote this that his own life would end so suddenly in two short years, which makes me wonder if God had impressed on him as he prayed this prayer that this message was for him as well as for those who heard him and those who read the words later.

Timeless encouragement and benefit can be gleaned from Marshall’s closeness to God, and I’m so grateful that I was led to the book that I’m reading little by little each morning.  I am not the same person I was when I began reading it at the beginning of this year, and that’s really saying something.

Go out and encourage someone today.  Say something to them that will change the way they look at themselves, at life, at the world around them.  You never know the ripples that that kind of encouragement might have not only in that one person’s life, but in the lives of many others whose lives are touched by that person you talk to.  Make it your ambition today to number your days and to use this day, this particular God-given day, well.


  1. It’s a beautiful prayer… and a wonderful way to start the day! Thank you for sharing it.
    We’re looking forward to seeing you and Michael in July.xo

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