By Flannery O'Connor
"I want to write a gorgeous prayer," writes the younger Flannery O'Connor during this deeply religious magazine, lately stumbled on between her papers in Georgia. "There is an entire brilliant global round me that I may be capable of flip in your praise." Written among 1946 and 1947 whereas O'Connor used to be a scholar faraway from domestic on the college of Iowa, A Prayer magazine is a unprecedented portal into the inner lifetime of the good author. not just does it map O'Connor's singular courting with the divine, however it exhibits how entwined her literary hope used to be along with her craving for God. "I needs to write down that i'm to be an artist. now not within the feel of aesthetic frippery yet within the feel of aesthetic craftsmanship; differently i'm going to believe my loneliness always . . . i don't are looking to be lonely all my lifestyles yet humans in simple terms make us lonelier via reminding us of God. pricey God please aid me to be an artist, please enable it bring about You."
O'Connor couldn't be extra undeniable approximately her literary ambition: "Please support me pricey God to be a very good author and to get whatever else accepted," she writes. but she struggles with any hint of self-regard: "Don't enable me ever imagine, expensive God, that i used to be whatever however the software on your story."
As W. A. periods, who knew O'Connor, writes in his creation, it was once no twist of fate that she begun writing the tales that might develop into her first novel, Wise Blood, through the years while she wrote those singularly imaginitive Christian meditations. together with a facsimile of the total magazine in O'Connor's personal hand, A Prayer Journal is the checklist of a super younger woman's coming-of-age, a cry from the guts for romance, grace, and art.
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Additional info for A prayer journal
The entries themselves could be simple, intimate, at moments childlike. At the same time, they could dramatize desires that were Olympian, astonishing for their range and depth of observation about human life and destiny—and perhaps too astonishing for earlier readers and guardians of the sheaf of handwritten pages buried for more than half a century. But to whom did she write these letters, these entries? Who was this lover she identified as such? In the journal, she generally named this presence God.
And at every dry point, I will be reminded Who is doing the work when it is done & Who is not doing it at that moment. Right now I wonder if God will ever do any more writing for me. He has promised His grace; I am not so sure about the other. Perhaps I have not been thankful enough for what has gone before. The desires of the flesh—excluding the stomach—have been taken away from me. For how long I don’t know but I hope forever. It is a great peace to be rid of them. Can’t anyone teach me how to pray?
This way I have it every instant. I can feel a warmth of love heating me when I think & write this to You. Please do not let the explanations of the psychologists about this make it turn suddenly cold. My intellect is so limited, Lord, that I can only trust in You to preserve me as I should be. Please help all the ones I love to be free from their suffering. Please forgive me. My dear God, I am impressed with how much I have to be thankful for in a material sense; and in a spiritual sense I have the opportunity of being even more fortunate.