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Prayer on Becoming Responsible as to Religious Duties, by Marcus Heinrich Bresslau (1852)

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Thanks to Thee, heavenly father, for the enjoyment of delight, for the felicitous emotion which my entry into Thy holy covenant renders unto me. Thanks for every pious feeling, which this solemn epoch excites within my soul, for the courage and the confidence with which I shall now commence my more serious course of life. I am fully conscious, that the lofty sentiments which animate me this day, will not be lasting, unless I supplicate Thee, all-just Father, that Thou mayest preserve within me as many of these sentiments as are necessary, to keep me far away from the path of sinfulness, and to stimulate me to the performance of all that is good. O cause the salutary impressions of this day to preponderate over allurements to evil, cause the pious emotions that move my heart, to guide me into the new relations for life, in which I shall have to enter; cause the power of faith to keep me erect even under the heavy burdens of life.

Holy resolves are the sacrifice, which my gratitude offers unto Thee in this hour so sacred unto me; cause, O Lord, that I may continue to be mindful of them, that the perception of their holiness may not perish within me, so that the strength required for their fulfilment may never fail me. I will renew them with the rise of every morning, and at the close of every evening will I conscientiously test by them my disposition and my actions. May Thy spirit remain within me, and enable my good will to accomplish its purpose. Amen.

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