Confirm me, Lord, by the grace of the Holy Spirit, and give me grace to be strong inwardly in soul and to cast out from it all unprofitable business of the world and of the flesh, that it may not be led by unstable desires of earthly things. And grant that I may behold all things in this world as they are – transitory and of short abiding, and I myself also to pass away together with them, for nothing under the sun can long abide, but all in vanity and affliction of the spirit.
Therefore, O Lord, give me true heavenly wisdom, that I may learn to seek you and to find you, and above all things to love you, and to understand and know all other things as they are, after the direction of your wisdom, and not otherwise. And give me grace, also, to withdraw myself from those who flatter me, and patiently tolerate those who grieve me so that the way I have begun will bring me to a good and blessed ending.
- From The Imitation of Christ by Thomas a Kempis
Found in A Guide to Prayer for Ministers and Other Servants, p 256.