Monday, August 26th, 2013
Sermon On The Mount (Part 17)
The Model Prayer
In this manner, therefore, pray:
Our Father in Heaven,
Hallowed be Your Name.
Your kingdom come.
Your will be done
On Earth as it is in Heaven.
Give us this day our daily bread.
And forgive us our debts,
As we forgive our debtors.
And do not lead us into temptation,
But deliver us from the evil one.
For Yours is the kingdom and the power and the glory forever. Amen.
Matthew 6:9-14 (NKJV)
The Lord's Prayer is simple and profound. It is a reflection of Christ Himself: humble and bold, loving and limitless. It is triumph in a handful of Words. It invites the coming of Christ--within us, His church and Earth itself. Its power is profound.
Called 'The Model Prayer,' it molds our hearts into vessels fit for a King: personal, reverential, kingdom-minded, obedient, considerate of all creation, hungry for Jesus, contrite, merciful, dependent on God's leadership--and His strength, submissive to God's sovereignty, enforcement and illumination.*
When The Model Prayer is said with a full heart, we begin to look like the Role Model Who created it: 'And we all, who with unveiled faces contemplate the Lord's glory, are being transformed into His Image with ever-increasing glory, which comes from the Lord, Who is the Spirit' (2 Corinthians 3:18).
Before Jesus came to Earth, God gave us another role model: King David, a man after His 'Own Heart' (Acts 13:22). He prayed a lot, too. Within the psalms, we find many examples: heartfelt prayers of praise, anguish, confession and repentance--pleadings to God, and trust in Him for deliverance and victory.**
'I will exalt You, Lord, for You lifted me out of the depths and did not let my enemies gloat over me. Lord my God, I called to You for help and You healed me' (Psalm 30:1-2).
True prayer comes from your heart--not your head. Humility is essential. For hearts like mine was before Jesus--for hearts that are proud, hard and turned toward themselves--brokenness is a blessing: 'The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit, a broken and a contrite heart--These, O God, You will not despise' (Psalm 51:17).
Put your heart into your prayer and watch in wonder--as God puts His Hand into your life: to transform it, and by your witness--to transform the lives of others around you.
To Be Continued...
** 'Praying the Psalms': http://www.persevering.org/psa_pray.html
P.S. To read the other devotions in this series, please see the Sermon On The Mount series.