When Captain Wentworth writes to Anne at the end of Persuasion, he says: “For you alone, I think and plan.” Anne stands at a window talking with another gentleman, “not very near,” and yet Wentworth can think of nothing but her and the distinct sound of her voice. We later read that Anne’s eyes “devoured” the words in his letter. In perhaps the most romantic scene in all of English literature, we see two people with their eyes and thoughts completely fixed on each other.
Jane paints a similar picture of wholehearted devotion to God in this portion of her prayer: She prays for the “knowledge” of God’s continual presence to teach her to “fix [her] Thoughts” on him. Like anyone who has ever sat down to pray, Jane evidently understood how easy it is to become distracted. She desired, therefore, to pray with “Reverence & Devotion.” Jane’s words also suggest that she wanted God on the throne of her heart and at the center of her vision.
May the knowledge of this, teach us to fix our Thoughts on Thee, with Reverence & Devotion that we pray not in vain.
Is prayer ever difficult due to the distractions and busyness of daily life?