Jesus taught His followers how to pray. Think about that for a second…
He was not giving a magic formula, but He was showing that the way we pray changes our faith. Christ taught a lot on prayer and He gave His disciples a pattern for prayer. We call this the Lord’s Prayer. Not only is this prayer good for reciting, but it also gives us a pattern that can guide all of our prayers: Praise to the Father, Kingdom, Needs, Forgiveness, and Temptation. For the next month, I will be looking at each of these 5 parts and sharing some thoughts. Feel free to share your thoughts, too!
We have a Father in heaven. He is not a distant God or a watchmaker who has left the universe; God is our Father who loves us and knows our needs. We don’t have to babble on in our prayers; we can trust that our God cares for us. He wants to hear from us, and invites us into a relationship with Him through His Son and Spirit. We can hear from God through His Word, and we get to talk with Him in prayer.
We love the Father, and we pray that His Name be kept holy. God revealed His specific name to Moses in the burning bush: “I AM”. God is the center of all being; God’s presence is Life and Love and Light. We pray that His Name be holy – set apart and pure. We pray that God will make His Name known to each person. We pray that we live in a way that brings honor and glory to God’s Name. In each generation there will be many who denigrate the Name of our Father. We pray that the honor of God’s Name will be higher than our desire to see our own names be honored.
How we pray changes our faith. Don’t just pray to “God” – a philosophical abstract of a highest being. Pray to our Father. No matter what your earthly father was like, God is the fulfillment of everything fatherhood is supposed to be. Be wrapped in His arms of love. God is our Father. Pray for His Name to be holy in our world – starting with your own life that is being transformed into love by the Father.
Can you see God as your Father? Do you pray every day for His Name to be holy? How would this change your prayer life?
Next week we will look at Kingdom come.