Thursday, October 22, 2015

How to Pray

     When Jesus's disciples asked Him how to pray, He gave them what we have come to know as The Lord's Prayer.  This prayer gives us a little insight into the nature of God.  "Our Father, who art in Heaven"  He likes for us to acknowledge who He is and His relationship to us.  "Hallowed be Thy name"  He wants us to revere and worship Him.  "Thy Kingdom come, Thy will be done on Earth as it is in Heaven"  He wants us to understand His power and might.  "Give us this day our daily bread"  He wants us to understand He is who provides for us and to be thankful for that.  "and forgive us our trespasses as we forgive those who trespass against us"  He wants us to confess our sins to Him as well as ask for forgiveness and He expects us to love and forgive each other.  "Lead us not into temptation but deliver us from evil"  He is again who leads us and protects us.  "For thine is the kingdom and the power and the glory, forever"  Again we acknowledge His greatness.
     My granddaughter is 7 years old.  Even though I, too, was raised in the church as a child, she seems to have a much greater understanding of who God is than I did at that age.  She wasn't really happy with the traditional blessing kids spout out at meal time and wanted something different.  We sat down and worked on it together  and this is what she now says before every time she eats.  "Father we love You.  Father we praise You.  Thank you for this we are about to receive and help it nourish our bodies so we may serve you better. Help us love one another.  In Jesus's name.  Amen"  The first time I heard her say this by herself, I have to admit it brought tears to my eyes.
     It was pretty amazing and it certainly hit the high points.  She acknowledged who God is by calling Him Father.  She let Him know we love Him and she worshiped Him with praise.  She thanked Him for the blessing of the food and asked only that it nourish us for His sake.  Then she asked for His guidance in loving each other.  What a blessing she is and has been to me.
     Personal prayers are a little touchy for many folks.  Mainly, I would say, just remember to whom you are talking.  It seems many people are afraid to talk to God because they don't know what to say.  My advice to all is to remain reverent and then talk to Him in much the same way you might talk to your earthly father.  He wants us to be close to Him and believe it or not, He is listening more to your heart than He is listening to your words.
I believe that while He is our Heavenly Father and He wants respect for that, He also wants to be our friend.  He does not want us to have any problems we can not bring to Him.  He wants us to be filled with His love and He wants us to know He is always with us. So, what is the most important message here?  Talk to Him.  Just talk to Him.  If you talk to Him, He will listen and you will be surprised at how He answers if you will just open your heart to listen.

No comments: