Personally Praying The Lord’s Prayer

The Lord’s Prayer is a biblical treasure we may take for granted because of its familiarity. We often recite it by rote, rather than pray it. The Lord’s Prayer can warm our hearts devotionally, enrich our relationship with God, and aid our intercession. The treasures of this prayer are both fresh and familiar. It is refreshing, encouraging, and insightful. It is the greatest prayer taught by the greatest Person. It starts with the greatest, most personal title for God, our Father.

Praying the Lord’s prayer, not just saying it, can jumpstart a sluggish devotional life and take our prayer lives to a new level. These words of Jesus, rich in personal application, transform us from the inside out. Ask God for the gift of reading slowly. These 60-plus words are worth a lifetime of meditation and application in prayer. What could be more powerful than Christ-modeled prayer?

The Lord’s prayer highlights relationships of prayer: child to Father, worshiper to holy God, subject to King in His throne room, servant to Master, beggar to Provider, sinner to Savior, follower to Guide, dependent one to Protector, and subject to Sovereign Glory. This prayer reflects intimacy in family relationship, reverence for the Name above all names, submission to the sovereignty and will of the King, total dependence and reliance on the Giver of every good gift, cleansing from sin by our Redeemer, victory over temptation and ultimate triumph over the evil one by our Deliverer, and the power and glory of our eternal Lord of lords.

The Lord’s prayer contains a focus of worship, a concise petition for basic physical needs, a standard of forgiveness, and urgent pleas for protection. It contains all the elements for a “Minimum Daily Requirement” prayer (worship, yielding to God’s purposes, guidance, petition, forgiveness, victory over sin, victory in spiritual warfare, and focus on the magnificence of God). On the other hand, it is more than minimum and has limitless opportunities for expansion. God will bring to mind other parts of His Word that we can meditatively bring to bear on each of the index sentences of the prayer. It covers every aspect of life: relationship with God, with others, and to the forces of spiritual warfare that oppose us each day.

Meditate on it before you get out of bed in the morning and throughout the day. It is completely portable. Isn’t this better than idle thoughts, fears, past failures, future worries, and whatever else usually occupies our souls during those otherwise mentally-unemployed times? (SYLVIA GUNTHER)

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