PRAYERS BEFORE SLEEP
Prayer of St. John of Damascus
Orthodox Prayer Book
(To be said pointing at the bed.)
O Lord, Lover of men, is this bed to be my coffin, or wilt Thou enlighten my
wretched soul with another day? Here the coffin lies before me, and here death
confronts me. I fear, O Lord, Thy Judgment and the endless torments, yet I cease
not to do evil. My Lord God, I continually anger Thee, and Thy immaculate Mother,
and all the Heavenly Powers, and my holy Guardian Angel. I know, O Lord, that I
am unworthy of Thy love, but deserve condemnation and every torment. But,
whether I want it or not, save me, O Lord. For to save a good man is no great
thing, and to have mercy on the pure is nothing wonderful, for they are worthy of
Thy mercy. But show the wonder of Thy mercy on me, a sinner. In this reveal Thy
love for men, lest my wickedness prevail over Thy unutterable goodness and
mercy. And order my life as Thou wilt.
(As sleep is the image of death, at night we pray for the departed.)
With the Saints give rest, O Christ, to the souls of Thy servants where there is no
pain, no sorrow, no sighing, but life everlasting.
(When about to lie down in bed, say:)
Lighten my eyes, O Christ God, lest I sleep in death, and lest my enemy say: I
have prevailed over him.
Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit.
Be my soul's Defender, O God, for I step over many snares. Deliver me from them
and save me, O Good One, in Thy love for men.
Now and ever, and to the ages of ages. Amen.