As we journey through these uncertain times, each day Sean will seek to post a thought or reflection, a Bible verse or a prayer.
Friday 2nd July 2020
One of the most important spiritual disciplines of faith is prayer. In its purest form, prayer is a conversation with God that flows from the heart. There is nothing we cannot prayer about, although intercessions about winning the National Lottery are unlikely to be answered!
In this Bible passage, Jesus gives a model for prayer, with five areas of focus.
That God’s name be respected – Father, hallowed be your name.
That God’s kingdom come – God’s kingdom of love will come in all its fullness at the end of time. Until then we see glimpses of the Kingdom – people finding faith, hope, purpose and healing. Churches find spiritual renewal and broken lives are made whole. Prayers sometimes answered in remarkable ways.
In the here and now, God is at work providing us a foretaste of what is to come. Here we also enter into the mystery of God’s will, purpose and providence.
Give each of us our daily bread – the focus moves to the present with God’s provision for our daily needs.
Forgive our sins. Here the focus is on past, present and future. God’s forgives our sins as we forgive the sins of others – past and present.
The present and future focus is a plea to God to help us to resisting temptation.
Luke 11: 1-13
‘Jesus’ teaching on prayer’
One day Jesus was praying in a certain place. When he finished, one of his disciples said to him, “Lord, teach us to pray, just as John taught his disciples.”
He said to them, “When you pray, say:
hallowed be your name,
your kingdom come.
Give us each day our daily bread.
Forgive us our sins,
for we also forgive everyone who sins against us.
And lead us not into temptation.’”
Then Jesus said to them, “Suppose you have a friend, and you go to him at midnight and say, ‘Friend, lend me three loaves of bread; a friend of mine on a journey has come to me, and I have no food to offer him.’ And suppose the one inside answers, ‘Don’t bother me. The door is already locked, and my children and I are in bed. I can’t get up and give you anything.’ I tell you, even though he will not get up and give you the bread because of friendship, yet because of your shameless audacity he will surely get up and give you as much as you need.
“So I say to you: Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives; the one who seeks finds; and to the one who knocks, the door will be opened.
“Which of you fathers, if your son asks for a fish, will give him a snake instead? Or if he asks for an egg, will give him a scorpion? If you then, though you are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in heaven give the Holy Spirit to those who ask him!”
This morning, make the Lord’s Prayer your main focus. Pause between each sentence and consider its meaning and how it applies to your life at the present moment.
Our Father in heaven,
hallowed be your name,
your kingdom come,
you will be done,
on earth as in heaven.
Give us today our daily bread.
Forgive us our sins
as we forgive those who sin against us.
Save us from the time of trial
and deliver us from evil.
For the kingdom, the power
and the glory are yours
now and forever.
May the Father’s hand
keep you from stumbling,
the footprints of Jesus
give you confidence to follow,
and the fire of the Spirit
keep you warm and safe
in your walk with God this day.