A Reflection on Prayer
A Reflection on Prayer
Matthew 6: 6-13
Jesus said :
6 When you pray, go into a room alone and close the door. Pray to your Father
in private. He knows what is done in private, and he will reward you.
7 When you pray, don't talk on and on as people do who don't know God. They
think God likes to hear long prayers.
8 Don't be like them. Your Father knows what you need before you ask.
9 You should pray like this: 'Our Father in heaven, help us to honour your
10 Come and set up your kingdom, so that everyone on earth will obey you, as
you are obeyed in heaven.
11 Give us our food for today.
12 Forgive us for doing wrong, as we forgive others.
13 Keep us from being tempted and protect us from evil.'
God is holy, terrifying, awesome, majestic, eternal ... but he
is also our Father! Has it ever struck you how completely incredible that is?
Some are fortunate enough to have had human fathers that make the idea of God
as father very appealing and accessible. Sadly, for many, fathers are absent,
or present but horrible. Whatever our experience with our human fathers, when
Jesus tells us that when we pray we are talking to our Father, he means it as a
very good thing.
Our Father God sees us. He rewards us (v 6). He knows what we need, even
before we put our requests into words (v 8). He made us, he loves us, he is
totally committed to us. We can talk to him about big things, small things, the
things that trouble us and those that make us happy. Just look at the range of
what is covered in the Lord's Prayer (vs 9-13).
Prayer can be difficult, not least because we are addressing someone that we
can't see (v 6). But if we start by remembering that Jesus taught us to pray to
God in such a personal and loving way that we can address him as Father, then
it may just seem that little bit easier.
Because Jesus dealt with our sin, we can be unafraid and
unashamed as we approach the very throne of God. Imagine yourself coming before
your almighty King. Kneel before him, and feel the awe of being in the presence
of the most royal of all royals. Then, look up into his eyes and say, 'Hello
Dad, I need to talk to you about something'. Share your heart with him knowing
that you are completely safe and loved.
Note - If you find addressing God as 'Dad' too difficult, use whatever
name you find most helpful - God doesn't want any name to stop you from talking
to him !
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