2010-09-29 - The Lord's Prayer
Part 1 ~ Originally Published 2001-01-27
Matthew 6:9-13 After this manner therefore, pray ye: Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be Thy name. Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done in Earth, as it is in Heaven. Give us this day our daily bread. And forgive us our debts as we forgive our debtors. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil: For Thine is the kingdom and the power and the glory, forever. Amen
I was listening to the kids in the Sunday School class that I teach. Often, during the lessons, I will quote verses, and sometimes they say them with me. The one they know by heart is John 3:16 -- "For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life."
I noticed that as they said it, they sort of went into a sing-song tone, and they quit thinking about the words. The words and phrases just spilled out of their mouth, without any thought or meaning behind them. They were just saying long-ago memorized words. Just "yadda-yadda-yadda." A couple of the kids kind of wagged their head back and forth and rolled their eyes as they said it, almost as if to say, "Here we go again, blah, blah, blah."
I started thinking about another set of words that are much the same way. We call it "The Lord's Prayer", although it's a pattern for prayer that Jesus gave us, not really His prayer. How often, when we say the words, do we think about the meaning behind what we are intoning?
I think that a lot of the habits that we have would be eliminated, if we thought about what these words really mean - and what the should mean to us. Stick with me in this series, as we examine what is behind those words -- they're not just words!
Father, they say that familiarity breeds contempt. I see it all around me, especially towards You and Your word. Father, here in the United States of America, we are surrounded with more than one copy of the Holy Bible per person living here, in every translation and version of it. Yet, as a whole, the "Christian American" doesn't really have a clue what You really have to say in it. Maybe a verse, maybe two, but we, as a whole don't read Your word. Our enemy has us believing that You are too hard to understand. Father, wake us up. I ask that every Christian would blow the dust off the cover, and begin to listen to You through Your word. I ask that lives would be changed, and that we would make a difference -- in our neighborhoods and in our homes. In the Precious name of Jesus, Amen