I have a fifteen minute radio program that is broadcast at 10:45 AM and 6:00 PM daily. I have been working my way through the pattern of prayer that Jesus gives us in “the Lord’s Prayer.” I believe most of us realize that this isn’t a prayer that we are to just repeat, but that it is a pattern for the way we should pray. This morning on the broadcast I read the words of an unknown author. See if they apply to your prayer.
- I cannot say “our” if I live only for myself in a spiritual, watertight compartment.
- I cannot say “Father” if I do not endeavor each day to act like His child.
- I cannot say “who art in heaven” if I am laying up no treasure there.
- I cannot say “hallowed be Thy name” if I am not striving for holiness.
- I cannot say “Thy kingdom come” if I am not doing all in my power to hasten that wonderful day.
- I cannot say “Thy will be done” if I am disobedient to His Word.
- I cannot say “on earth as it is in heaven” if I will not serve Him here and now.
- I cannot say “give us . . . our daily bread” if I am dishonest or an “under-the-counter” shopper.
- I cannot say “forgive us our debts” if I harbor a grudge against anyone.
- I cannot say “lead us not into temptation” if I deliberately place myself in its path.
- I cannot say “deliver us from evil” if I do not put on the whole armor of God.
- I cannot say “Thine is the kingdom” if I do not give to the King the loyalty due Him as a faithful subject.
- I cannot attribute to Him “the power” if I fear what men may do.
- I cannot ascribe to Him “the glory” if I am seeking honor only for myself.
- I cannot say “forever” if the horizon of my life is bounded completely by the things of time.
This prayer goes much deeper than most of us ever consider. By meditating on each of the phrases in the prayer and the statements above we realize that this prayer is ALL about God. I know these thoughts were challenging to me. Hopefully they will challenge others.