The past year has continued to be a theme of learning how to pray. Talking to God, listening to God and developing confidence in this tool He created to develop a deeper relationship with Him. This past week I have been reflecting over Jesus’ teaching on prayer from Matthew 6. A common prayer that I have recited since childhood. A few thoughts that I am learning as I look at these words.
Our Father in heaven, hallowed by your name.
Acknowledging who God says He is if the first and foremost filter that I must train myself to think through. He is God and there is no other.
Your kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven.
Do I trust His will? In all areas of life, with all dreams, with all hopes, can I truly lay my everything in His hands and trust His will? Do I believe He knows best? Do I know that He has my best interest in mind? Do I believe that the bigger picture He has is worth it?
Give us this day our daily bread
What is it that I think I need? Do I trust He will provide with what I need? Do I trust that the means He uses to provide for me is actually what I need most?
and forgive us our debts, as we also have forgiven our debtors.
Forgiveness effects relationships. All relationships. Do I trust Him with the injustices? Do I trust Him with how I have been mistreated? What about me being validated? What about me feeling control again? What about me being protected from pain?
And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil.
Do I want to be delivered from evil? Am I aware of the evil that surrounds me? Am I aware of the deception and the superficial attractions that pull at my desires and thoughts? Do I want to cling to His truth more than to things of this world? And when He leads, will I actually follow and turn away from the thoughts, sights, and actions that would lead me astray? Do I hesitate?
I am feeling very challenged by this prayer.