from the devotional book, PICTURES OF GOD
Read Matthew 6:5-15
Tucked away in the middle of the Sermon on the Mount is the Lord’s Prayer. It has enriched my relationship with God in uncounted ways. But for our purposes here, let’s look at the Lord’s Prayer and focus on just one question: How does having God as our Father change the way we pray?
1. When you talk to your Father, be simple. Be direct. Be honest. You don’t need to beg Him or badger Him into submission or bury Him in words. He already knows what you need before you ask. Just ask, then trust that He will give you what is best. He is your loving Father. Simple faith requires only simple prayer.
2. Since your Father is perfect in power, wisdom, and love, what we need is always and only His best. The key to prayer is wanting only what God wants, and that should be the focus of every prayer. Pray for His glory, His kingdom, and His will. That should always be the deep cry of your heart.
3. As you trust your Father, your usual needs and worries are boiled down into one request: Give us this day our daily bread (Matthew 6:11, NASB). Remember His promise:
“Seek first His kingdom and His righteousness, and all these things [the necessities of life] will be added to you.” (Matthew 6:33, NASB)
4. Weak and imperfect creatures like us cannot live in intimate relationship with our holy Father without confession and dependence:
Forgive us our debts, as we also have forgiven our debtors.
And do not lead us into temptation, but deliver us from evil.
(Matthew 6:12-13, NASB)
Admit your neediness to live as He wants. Without Him, sin is a debt we cannot pay and a trap we cannot avoid. But rely on Him:
God is faithful, who will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able, but with the temptation will provide the way of escape also, so that you will be able to endure it. (1 Corinthians 10:13, NASB)
Jesus’ simple prayer models the naturalness of living in the presence of a holy God when He is our loving Father.