WHAT do WE PRAY to god for, WHEN WE ASK him FOR MERCY
Saint Mina’s Monastery – Egypt
Have mercy on us, O God, according to Your great mercy; we pray to You: hear us and have mercy.
We pray for Mercy, Peace, Life, Health, Salvation, Visitation, and Protection of all, as well as for the forgiveness of their Sins, both voluntary and involuntary.
We ask for God’s Mercies. Lord doesn’t punish us as we deserve, but from His reserves of Great Mercy, hear us and extend Mercy to us.
We ask for Peace, because a peaceful countenance will give us the eyes to see our own need for healing. When we are not at peace, our primary thought is to defend ourselves. It is when we are at peace that we can look within ourselves.
We ask for Life, because life affords us the opportunity to Repent and to do the works of Faith. Once Life ends, we have lost the opportunity to Repent.
We ask for Health, both Physical Health and Spiritual Health. The human being is comprised of Body, Mind, Soul, and Spirit. A Healthy Spirit will help maintain a Healthy Mind. A Healthy Mind will help maintain a Healthy Spirit. All of these are intertwined. Thus, we pray for our overall Health.
We ask for Salvation, because this is the primary purpose and goal in life. God’s creation of us, His sending of Lord Jesus Christ to open the path to Paradise, and His Mercies to not reject us, among so many other things, lead us to this ultimate goal: Salvation and Eternal Life in the Kingdom of God.
We ask for Visitation, in other words, to not feel lonely and estranged from God. We ask for Him to visit us, by sending His Spirit on us, and by sending others to us to encourage us and to help us heal.
We ask for protection. No one goes through life unscathed by sin, or sickness, or setback. These things continually wound us. We ask for protection to avoid pitfalls and to be healed from them when they befall us.
And finally we ask for forgiveness of our sins, the ones we did voluntarily and even the ones we did unintentionally or unknowingly. Much of our Spiritual Anxiety (and anxiety in general) comes from guilt and anger over past failings, or because others have failed us. In praying for forgiveness of sins, we are asking God to mercifully wipe away all that we have done wrong towards Him or towards one another.
In praying “Lord, have mercy”, not only are we comforted by the thought of God having Mercy on our lives, we are reminded that we are to have Mercy on one another.
If we expect God to forgive our voluntary and involuntary Sins, then we should be willing to forgive one another in the same way.