O Thou loving and tender Father in heaven, I confess before Thee, in deep sorrow, how hard and unsympathizing is my heart; how often I have sinned against my neighbor by want of compassion and tenderness; how often I have felt no true pity for his trials and sorrows, and have neglected to comfort, help, and visit him. O Father, forgive this heavy sin, and lay it not to my charge. Give me grace ever to alleviate the crosses and difficulties of those around me, and never to add to them; teach me to be a consoler in sorrow, to take thought for the stranger, the widow, and the orphan; let my charity show itself not in words only but in deed and truth. Teach me to judge, as Thou dost, with forbearance, with much pity and indulgence; and help me to avoid all unloving judgment of others—Amen.
Johann Arndt (1555–1621).