“Save Me Whether I Want It or Not”

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A Prayer to Our Lord Jesus Christ

My most merciful and all-merciful God, O Lord Jesus Christ! In Thy great love, Thou didst come down and become flesh in order to save all. Again, I pray Thee, save me by Grace! If Thou shouldst save me because of my deeds, it would not be a gift, but merely a duty. Truly, Thou aboundest in graciousness and art inexpressibly merciful! Thou hast said, O my Christ: “He who believes in me shall live and never see death.” If faith in Thee saves the desperate, behold: I believe! Save me, for Thou art my God and my Maker. May my faith replace my deeds, O my God, for Thou wilt find no deeds to justify me. May my faith be sufficient for all. May it answer for me; may it justify me; may it make me a partaker of Thine eternal glory; and may Satan not seize me, O Word, and boast that He has torn me from Thy hand and fold. O Christ my Savior: save me whether I want it or not! Come quickly, hurry, for I perish! Thou art my God from my mother’s womb. Grant, O Lord, that I may now love Thee as once I loved sin, and that I may labor for Thee without laziness as once I labored for Satan the deceiver. Even more, I will labor for Thee, my Lord and God Jesus Christ, all the days of my life, now and ever and unto ages of ages. Amen.

From the Morning Prayers

About Fr. Stephen Freeman

Fr. Stephen is a priest of the Orthodox Church in America, Pastor Emeritus of St. Anne Orthodox Church in Oak Ridge, Tennessee. He is also author of Everywhere Present and the Glory to God podcast series.



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20 responses to ““Save Me Whether I Want It or Not””

  1. Alyssa Avatar
    Alyssa

    “Grant, O Lord, that I may now love Thee as once I loved sin”

    AMEN!

  2. Dave Wells Avatar
    Dave Wells

    Father, a beautiful prayer – as well as a rejoinder to our evangelical Protestant neighbors who think that Orthodox and Catholics believe in “works righteousness”. Thank you for sharing it!

  3. Fr Stephen Avatar
    Fr Stephen

    I do not know the history of this prayer. It may very well have had some influence from Protestant concerns (not unusual in the past few centuries) but this in no way makes the prayer less Orthodox.

  4. Jim N. Avatar
    Jim N.

    The first time my wife and I used a prayer book with the prayer, we were both so struck by it! What a cry of desperation ‘…make haste, quick, quick! For I perish…’ and so close to home by the time Friday morning rolls around. 🙂

  5. Edee Avatar
    Edee

    I have been praying for the first time (started 3 years ago when I lost my parent within 30 days to the day of each other)..understand I now am looking to be save because I beleive we are in the end of days..I always beleived in the LORD always always always..AND my voice I know goes up to him every time I cry out..Now would you please guide me further???

  6. Michelle Avatar
    Michelle

    “Grant, O Lord, that I may now love Thee”

    What a relief, to be able to ask God for help in order to love Him, instead of trying to manufacture feelings of loving Him!

    Thank you for writing this blog. My new godmother (I’m a catechumen) introduced me to it recently, and as you can see I’m going right back to the beginning of it. I’ll try not to gobble it up too quickly, but savour it slowly and thoughtfully. 😀 Father, bless!

  7. nehemiah Avatar

    I was looking for a way to redeem myself but can’t quite do it..
    these prayer help me do so. I love Jesus but i have one big weakness
    . Plz pray for me all. And thanks for these beautiful prayer.

  8. Zoe Avatar
    Zoe

    Thank you, Father Stephen for posting this prayer and thank you Nehemiah for directing me to this old post of Father Stephen. I need this kind of prayer too. I will pray for you and for all. Pray for me also, a sinner.

  9. Danni Avatar
    Danni

    I know that god still hears a sinners prayers

  10. fatherstephen Avatar

    It’s the only kind of prayers, generally, that we can offer.

  11. fatherstephen Avatar

    It’s generally the only kind of prayer we can offer.

  12. Danny Avatar
    Danny

    Jesus teach us how to pray. It´s so simple and it contains everything we need to tell God. You don´t have to ´´make´´ and ´´offer´´. I pray God for my needs, and I use His pattern. It´s THAT simple.

  13. Angie Avatar
    Angie

    I need Jesus now, to save me from crashing down and making another mistake in my life. I give Him all my free will, coz what i want may not be what i need, what is good in my eyes may not be good in His for me .. 2 more days, please pray for me father, let our Father’s will be done on earth in my life as done in heaven, amin.

  14. pauljohn Avatar
    pauljohn

    Thank you Lord Jesus Christ for saving me today and let it be everyday so now Ill pray this wonderful prayer. thank you Lord…
    pls pray ” Save me Whether I Want it or Not”By Fr.Stephen. Lord Jesus Christ Help us…… you are Our Savior and Our Provider let them know you were there all the time… We need you in our life.

  15. Emeka Avatar

    I very much like this prayer please fr. And you always remember me in your prayers Emeka Tochukwu.

  16. leo zach Avatar
    leo zach

    I don’t believe in the afterlife and God as is in this day and age. Nonetheless, I love Jesus for what He was and hopefully for what He will be (when the current universe is long gone and a new one is created). He is missing from my life, I wish I could be near Him!

  17. Kenny Scott Avatar
    Kenny Scott

    O Christ my Savior: save me whether I want it or not!

    I am always unsure if I “truly” want it. If God judges us by our actions as with the sheep who give clothing to the naked, I may be OK, but if God judges us by our heart… I am pious, but have many doubts with just a little faith. I hope that bit about the mustard seed hold true.

  18. James Kenyon Avatar
    James Kenyon

    This is Justification by Faith Alone.

  19. Fr. Stephen Freeman Avatar

    Yes. And no. Orthodox theology long predates the Protestant/Catholic debate – such that it’s not at all unlikely to see statements that you might fit in a variety of later categories – and they’re made without fear of contradiction because they speak the language of Scripture.

  20. William Avatar
    William

    Father Stephen,

    This prayer has lifted me out of the mire of many difficult times, and I’ve been searching for its author ever since, but to no avail. I see that as of 3 years ago you didn’t know much about the history of this prayer, but I’m wondering if you have learned anything regarding its origin since then. It appears in many English translations of Russian prayer books, which makes me think it may have originally been a Russian prayer (though I know many of the Russian prayers are themselves Greek in origin), but that’s about all I have to go on!

    Any other clues you could give me would be greatly appreciated.

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  1. I didn’t realize these might be called “arrow” prayers. While I have said something like them (that I’ve made up…


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