Martin Luther’s Sacristy Prayer

Lord God, you have appointed me as a pastor in your Church, but you see how unsuited I am to meet so great and difficult a task. If I had lacked your help, I would have ruined everything long ago.
Therefore, I call upon you: I wish to devote my mouth and my heart to you; I shall teach the people. I myself will learn and ponder diligently upon your Word.
Use me as your instrument — but do not forsake me, for if ever I should be on my own, I would easily wreck it all. Amen.

This is a prayer that I have posted in the room where I robe and prepare to lead worship. I pray it before every worship service. It is a simple, humble plea for help that never fails to move me, and prepare my heart and mind for the task to which I have been called. It also connects me to many other church leaders over the centuries who have prayed these same words, and who pray them still.

This prayer was translated in 1999 for Project Wittenberg by James Kellerman and has been placed in the public domain by him. You can find more information here:

4 thoughts on “Martin Luther’s Sacristy Prayer

  1. That is a meaningful prayer, and I’m touched that you pray it before every service. I wish I had had something similar taped to the organ console. The organist can make a spectacular mess of a service.

    Liked by 1 person

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