A Prayer

Dear God, I am so discouraged about my work.  I have the feeling of discouragement that is.  I realize I don’t know what I realize.  Please help me dear God to be a good writer and to get something else accepted.  That is so far from what I deserve, of course, that I am naturally struck with the nerve of it.  Contrition in me is largely imperfect.  I don’t know if I’ve ever been sorry for a sin because it hurt You.  That kind of contrition is better than none but it is selfish.  To have the other kind, it is necessary to have knowledge, faith extraordinary.  All boils down to grace, I suppose.  Again asking God to help us be sorry for having hurt Him.  I am afraid of pain and I suppose that is what we have to have to get grace.  Give me the courage to stand the pain to get the grace.  Oh, Lord.  Help me with this life that seems so treacherous, so disappointing.
— Flannery O’Connor, A Prayer Journal
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