There have been several times that I have taught through the elements of the Lord’s prayer and I wanted to take a moment and put some of those thoughts here. This is mostly for a recent prayer challenge I have given to our church family at The Shepherd’s Fellowship but it may be of interest to others as well.
In Matthew 6, we find where Jesus is teaching on prayer. He states, “This, then, is how you should pray…” Now I do not believe that Jesus was saying each and every time you prayer, it must be these words, in this order, and don’t mess up (though it is a beautiful prayer). However, if we look at the prayer, I do believe it gives a model that, if followed in honesty and in love will lead you to some of the most incredible prayers you have ever had.
Try it! Find a solitary place and pray through these elements one by one out loud to your God. He’s waiting for you and I will bet you will meet Him there as you give yourself to this prayer.
Our Father who art in Heaven
Hallowed by thy Name
We start with worship….an acknowledgment of who God is…. Spend some time just reflecting and claiming Him!
Interesting side note: Hallowed means “bought by blood”. Hallowed ground is ground from a battle that was bought with the blood of the soldiers. Hallowed is “thy Name” because He has bought you with His blood!
Thy Kingdom Come, Thy Will be done
On Earth as it is in Heaven
Submission! Talk to Him and reveal your heart to turn it all over to Him. Turn over your battles, your fear, your celebrations, your plans, your failures, your successes…. His will be done!
Give us this day our daily bread
Faith! Trust Him that He is going to provide with both spiritual and physical needs… if you are struggling, this is a great statement of faith. If you have plenty, this is a great time of humbleness acknowledging Him
Forgive us our Debts
As we forgive our debtors
Forgiveness! Be careful not to stop at the end of the first line on this one! Forgiveness leads to freedom which God desires for all to have. Submit to His forgiveness and pass it along to others. When you do, the bondage of sin is defeated!
And lead us not into temptation
But deliver us from the evil one
Protection! It’s interesting that this comes right after forgiveness. When you gain freedom from the acceptance and giving of forgivness, the enemy is not going to be happy (to say the least) The “evil one” will try to take you captive again! Here is a wonderful time of prayer to acknowledge this so we are not surprised but at the same time comforted that we have a God who will protect and defend us. We are not alone and our God is victorious!
For thine is the kingdom, the power, and the glory forever. Amen
Let’s end where we started, worship! Now that we have poured out our heart to God, let’s remember who He is! He is our Abba (a passionate form of the word Father)! He is the King!
Try this prayer and be honest and real with God through it. The first time I followed this prayer line, I was left in tears of how much my Abba loves me. Maybe you will have a similar situation or maybe He will do something new with you.
After you try this, if you want to experience it in a different way, consider finding a copy of the song “As it is in Heaven” by Michael W. Smith (itunes or support your local Christian bookstore). Play it when you are in a solitary place and pray through quietly as he sings the different parts. It is a very impactfull experience!
That’s my thoughts for today. Touch base and let me know what God does as the Spirit moves!