Jesus gave his followers a model for prayer. And up until today, I believed that you simply recited it…wrong.
In Matthew 6:7 it says,
And when you pray, do not use VAIN REPETITIONS as the heathen do…For they think that they will be heard for their many words.
So what Christ was saying is…don’t rely on simply saying the same thing over and over again. Don’t just repeat your words from memory.
Each time you pray should be unique and special. Who wants to have the exact same conversation repeatedly? No one.
For example: If you’ve ever called a customer service dept., the rep answers the line in a scripted way and most times, devoid of any true interest in the caller.
Our prayers should not be scripted. Yaweh is The Almighty God! Do you think that He doesn’t know why you’re praying? How much more insulting could I be…going through the motions of “devotion” by giving Him some scripted entreaty?
NO WONDER WHY MY PRAYERS GO UNANSWERED!
Jesus knew! He knew that in order to maintain a covenant, we’d have to go deeper. But once again, we simply think that reciting the Lord’s Prayer is going to get it.
First, Jesus gave US that prayer! It is not “The Lord’s Prayer”. It is The Lord’s INSTRUCTION for prayer.
8Therefore do not be like them. For your FATHER knows the things you have need of before you ask HIM.
9In this manner, therefore, pray:
HE said “in this manner, therefore, pray:” That means…this prayer is an OUTLINE. An example on how to pray to God. Not necessarily what to say but instead how to say it!
Here is Jesus’ instruction:
10Our Father in heaven
Hallowed be Your name
Your kingdom come
Your will be done
On earth as it is in heaven…
Stop there. I think this section is the most powerful portion of this prayer outline. What Jesus told us to do here: ACKNOWLEDGE
Address your God and acknowledge HIS greatness and all that HE IS. Acknowledge that HIS WILL is above all and that before and above anything else is HIS WILL.
IT(HIS WILL) will be done on the earth as it ALREADY is in heaven.
So each time we pray, we should begin by first acknowledging HIM who we pray to and show respect and admiration of that unequalled greatness. You are talking to the MASTER ARCHITECT of the ENTIRE UNIVERSE after all…that requires all the respect my caps lock can try and identify. He is GOD, Lord of ALL! He can see right through the theatrics so it’s best to leave them out of the equation.
11Give us this day our daily bread
Jesus said to Satan when He was tempted that man should not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceeds from the mouth of God.
In other words, each day we should begin by asking for His guidance for the day. What would He have us do to being honor to Him. How can we be of service for The Master Architect this day?
12And forgive us our debts
As we forgive our debtors
Debts = Sins or offenses
Hello! Forgive us of our sins AS we forgive others. We have to have forgiveness! We cannot ask for what we are unwilling to provide. If we pray to God for money guess what…we have to be willing to give it away.
If we pray for strength, we have to be willing to be strong! Peace? Be a peacemaker….etc.
Holding onto money, selfishness, anger, grief, envy….all of these things may explain what we are constantly praying for love, money, fame.
Instead we should emulate what we are seeking. Basically Jesus made sure to say AS WE…meaning…we and our actions dictate God’s action.
13And do not lead us into temptation
But deliver us from the evil one
For yours is the kingdom and the power and the glory forever,
Each daily conversation/prayer should contain a request for protection. DAILY. Why? Because to protect His children is His glory! Protection signifies that you are His! Protection shows His Power!
In the old testament, the world knew who God’s true followers were by His constant protection. People were thrown into fires and lions and were UNHARMED…which then caused those who tried to harm them to question their own faith!
His protection is a weapon for winning souls! Its in His will and desire to protect you but you have to ask! He gave you the free will to ask….or refuse by not asking.
How do you ask for protection? You start by putting on your armor. No one but fools go in to battle without armor and believe me…spiritual battles are CONSTANTLY raging. Just because its a beautiful day outside doesn’t mean that you will make it home in one peace at the end of the day.
There is a constant battle and struggle for your downfall. You. Personally. Yes you!
12For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against the rulers of darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places.
13Therefore take up the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day and having done all, to stand.
It is so important to cover yourself, your loved ones and everyone…even your enemies with the power of the Blood of Christ. Why? Because your true enemy is the spiritual hosts of wickedness that rule this world. Not your neighbor who wont stop playing his music loud. Not your boss who seems to hate you for no reason.
Your enemy wants to destroy you utterly! These frivolous things of the world are just that. Frivolous! But they are indicative of the spirit. If you have been nothing by kind, patient and understanding but for some reason it doesn’t matter. People curse at you and hate you anyway. Is it because you deserve it? Or are they tools of your enemy seeking to engage you into battle?
Helmet of Salvation
Breastplate of Righteousness
Girdle of Truth
Shoes of Peace
Sword of the Spirit
and above ALL the SHIELD OF FAITH
The Shield is the ONLY way to please God. Without faith it is IMPOSSIBLE to please God.
When you are uncovered, without your armor and faith and without God’s interception you will be destroyed.
Interception. To intercept. If you look at that word and its meaning closely you’ll realize all that He does to preserve you! God is AWESOME!
|Definition:||head off; interrupt|
ambush, appropriate, arrest, block, catch, check, curb, cut in, cut off, deflect, head off at pass, hijack, hinder, interlope, interpose, make off with, obstruct, prevent, seize, shortstop, stop, take, take away
So in conclusion, Jesus gave us everything….everything we would need in one outline of prayer.