ESSAY

Week 2

“I Want to Be Better”

By Howard Thurman

The concern which I lay bare before God today is my need to be better:
I want to be better than I am in my most ordinary day-by-day contacts:
With my friends—
With my family—
With my casual contacts—
With my business relations—
With my associates in work and play.
I want to be better than I am in the responsibilities that are mine:
I am conscious of many petty resentments.
I am conscious of increasing hostility toward certain people.
I am conscious of the effort to be pleasing for effect, not because it is a genuine feeling on my part.
I am conscious of a tendency to shift to other shoulders burdens that are clearly my own.
I want to be better in the quality of my religious experience:
I want to develop an honest and clear prayer life.
I want to develop a sensitiveness to the will of God in my own life.
I want to develop a charitableness toward my fellows that is greater even than my most exaggerated pretensions.
I want to be better than I am.
I lay bare this need and this desire before God in the quietness of this moment.