To Pray as Jesus taught us
Sometimes the only thing to do is pray
But what do I pray? You may ask.
There is so much that is overwhelming me
I am too busy for my own good
Or too sad for my health
Have things really changed since Jesus was alive?
Not a lot!
Q: Why did Jesus put this prayer on his curriculum?
A: From a direct request from His students!
The disciples had watched Jesus communicating with his Father through prayer, the language of God and they had witnessed the answers from the Father – and they wanted to have the same relationship.
Jesus wanted his followers to be persistent in praying – and it doesn’t matter if the only prayer you ever say, is the one He taught us.
Jesus wanted us to have patience, courage and hope but always to know the availability of God, your Father, with an open door pass just for you.
So Pray – as Jesus taught
We begin with Our Father as a good reminder that we share in this loving God. Though you can change it the possessive adjective of ‘My’, but by using ‘Our’ gives the true relationship, an opening statement that you share this Father with Jesus. Already Jesus in his opening words connects with you and says you are my sister or brother, because we share the same spiritual Father.
Father – definition. He is there for us and will never forsake us. This is His promise and His oath, and He always keeps them. God the Father cannot be compared with our earthly or biological fathers. He is so much more and wants you to share in His Kingdom and Glory.
Who Art in Heaven
The place we associate with God – although He is omnipresent, for our human minds to understand, Heaven is regarded as His home address.
Hallowed by Thy Name
Following the first commandment, to have no other Gods, and Jesus’ commandment, to love the Lord your God, with all your mind, spirit and soul. Respect, awesome fear and honour go into the word of ‘hallowed’.
Thy Kingdom Come, Thy Will be Done, On Earth as it is in Heaven
Christians know there is a better life, and a fervent prayer of asking for the second coming, for the return of Jesus to earth and God’s Kingdom to reign
His ways are best and if his rules were accepted as the norm, what a different world we would have. In fact, it would turn earth into heaven!
Give us this day our Daily Bread
Forgive us our Trespasses (sins)
We love it when we receive God’s mercy and grace and He forgives us when we do wrong, acknowledge it and are remorseful. There is a kicker to this line, with the conditional next one,
As we forgive those who trespass against us
If we expect God to forgive us then we have to do the same for others. It is no good holding onto grudges and maintaining our right to be hurt by others, we have to forgive them. If we don’t, then the first part of asking God to forgive our mistakes, wrongdoing and willful actions cannot be forgiven either. So, by the measure of forgiveness you have in your heart for others, God will use that as His starting point!
Sobering thought eh?
The next time someone hurts you, instead of telling everyone how much you are hurt and how much you have been wronged by that person – forgive them instead!
Strangely enough you will feel better and less bitter by forgiving – even those who are hurt you dreadfully. It is the Father who will punish them and not us!
And lead us not into temptation
Perhaps a strange wording, as I can’t see how God would lead us into something that is not good for us. It might be the phraseology that is odd here, ‘lead us not’. It means, don’t let us get caught out by temptation.
We very easily fall for temptation, such as:
- looking for an easy way round something,
- going alone in our own strength or
- just wanting something which deep down we know is not good for us.
Mark understands this, stating that the spirit is willing, but the flesh is weak!
But deliver us from Evil
Asking God for His protection is the best way to ask for help. He is the only one that evil will walk away from, the person who can rescue us and we need this protection desperately.
For thine (or yours) is the kingdom, the power and the glory
Acknowledging that it is HIM who has everything necessary for a good life, and it has nothing to do with us. It was King David who gives the best example of exalting God’s majesty, splendour and greatness.
Forever and ever
As we love to say, God is the same, yesterday and today and forever.
We agree with everything that we have just prayed.
There is a contemporary and a Traditional version but really the only differences are, using the word Your in the Contemporary rather than Thy (Trad.) and Sins (Contemporary) instead of trespasses (Trad.)
Our Father, who art in heaven,
Hallowed be thy name;
Thy (Your) kingdom come;
Thy (Your) will be done;
on earth as it is in heaven.
Give us this day our daily bread.
And forgive us our trespasses (sins),
as we forgive those who trespass (sin) against us.
And lead us not into temptation;
but deliver us from evil.
For thine (yours) is the kingdom,
the power and the glory,
forever and ever.
A prayer, which is over 2000 years old, joining us with millions of others who also say it. It is the prayer said from our hearts to the heart of our Father God.
Once Jesus was in a certain place praying.
As he finished, one of his disciples came to him and said,
“Lord, teach us to pray, just as John taught his disciples.
Luke 11:1 (NLT)
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