Most of you have heard or even know the Lord’s Prayer. It is in the Bible in two different places: Luke 11:1-4 and Matthew 6: 9-15.
Jesus was a man of prayer. He prayed to His Father in heaven every day for help, guidance, comfort and advice. Jesus would rise early in the morning to be alone and pray. The Disciples and others saw Him praying, so one day the Disciples asked Him to teach them to pray, too. Jesus gave them an example and told them to pray like this:
“Our Father, who art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name.” The prayer begins with praise. God is our heavenly Father; hallow means we respect and honor Him as holy.
“Thy Kingdom come. Thy will be done on earth, as it is in heaven.” This speaks of our hope. We know that Jesus will come again, and we want things here on earth to be like they are in heaven — loving and kind.
“Give us this day our daily bread.” We need to depend upon God for everything, not just our food to eat every day. We ask Him to give us the things that we truly need to live a good Christian life and not worry about anything.
“And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors.” A debt is something we owe to someone. God forgave our sins through Jesus Christ on the cross and rising again, so we should also forgive our friends when they hurt our feelings just the same. Forgiveness is very important for us all.
“And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil.” Ask God to keep us from doing wrong and safe from bad things. This speaks of God’s goodness to us.
“For thine is the kingdom, the power, and the glory forever.” We need to always know that God is all powerful and in control of our world.
“Amen.” This means “So be it.”
This is a wonderful prayer to say and learn. Jesus said other things about prayer, too. He said to pray about everything, to never give up praying for those things we feel are important, and to always have faith when we pray. He said God hears our prayers. He loves us and wants us to spend time talking with Him.
Take time to pray and talk to God every day. Beginning with the Lord’s Prayer is a good way to start. Then just tell Him about your day, your wishes, your fears, your joys, your family and your friends.
Let’s say a prayer together now. “Father, thank you for giving us an example of how to we should pray. We know you love to talk with us, so help us to remember every day to talk with you about our cares, concerns and what’s happening in our lives. In Jesus’ name we pray, So be it.”
Ann Moody is coordinator of Christian education for First Presbyterian Church of Gallipolis.