Arrow prayers are, essentially, one-line (or two) prayers said in the moment. They are characterized as very heartfelt and sincere petitions that sum up the problem nicely. The term, arrow prayer, was coined by Augustine to describe an early Coptic form of monastic prayer.
Since the arrow is mentioned, I will describe these prayers as going to the heart of the matter in a most swift and efficient manner.
What do you think?
One of these days I want to set aside some time to sit down and come with some of my own. But, perhaps, setting some time aside to sit down and create these would be defeating the purpose — they are supposed to be spontaneous, and instant in their creation, after all.
Here are some examples:
O Lord, you know how busy I must be this day; if I forget you, do not forget me: for Christ’s sake. – Jacob Astley, before the battle of Edge Hill in 1642
O Lord, baptize our hearts into a sense of the conditions and needs of all people. – George Fox
O God, help us not to despise what we do not understand. – William Penn
Make us remember, O God, that every day is your gift, to be used according to your command. – Samuel Johnson
Those things, good Lord, that we pray for, give us thy grace to labor for. – Thomas More
Teach us to pray often, that we may pray oftener. – Jeremy Taylor
Thy will be done, though in my own undoing. – Thomas Browne
And so I sometimes think our prayers
Might well be merged in one;
And nest and perch and hearth and church
Repeat, “Thy will be done.” – Thomas Browne
My God, I love you. – Deathbed words of Therese of Lisieux
O Lord, let us not live to be useless, for Christ’s sake. Amen. – John Wesley
Pardon, O gracious Jesus, what we have been; with your holy discipline correct what we are. Order by your providence what we shall be; and, in the end, crown your own gifts. Amen. – John Wesley
O God who made this beautiful earth, when will it be ready to receive your saints? How long, O Lord, how long? – George Bernard Shaw
O Lord, I do not pray for tasks equal to my strength: I ask for strength equal to my tasks. – Phillips Brooks (author of “O Little Town of Bethlehem”)
O Lord, deliver us from the need to build ourselves up by cutting others down. – Ernest T. Campbell
From silly devotions
and from sour-faced saints,
good lord, deliver us. – Teresa of Avila
Keep us, Lord, so awake in the duties of our callings that we may sleep in your peace and wake in your glory. – John Donne
O Lord Jesus Christ, save us from the error of wishing to admire you instead of being willing to follow you and to resemble you. – Soren Kiekegaard
Especially we pray to make Christianity more Christian. – Harry Emerson Fosdick
Lord, take, take my lips and speak through them. Take my mind and think through it, take my heart and set it on fire for love of you. – W. H. Aitken
think through me
till your ideas
are my ideas. – Amy Carmichael