Oh God unto whom all hearts lie open, unto whom desire is eloquent and from whom no secret thing is hidden; purify the thoughts of my heart by the outpouring of your Spirit that I may love you with a perfect love and praise you as you deserve. Amen.
Sound familiar? The opening prayer of the "Brief Order for Confession and Forgiveness" in the Lutheran Book of Worship is virtually identical. With this prayer, an anonymous 14th-century English author began his guide to Christian contemplation, The Cloud of Unknowing.
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