What helps you to pray?
We say what’s known as the Lord’s prayer every week in Church. It’s an important prayer – because it proves God likes animals with shells – it’s the one that Jesus tortoise (taught us – get it?) Moving on…
It’s also an important prayer because it gives us a pattern to shape our prayers around. Firstly, we can approach our Heavenly Father in prayer full stop. He is the one who cares for us. God is the one who shows us what it means to be a father – even when our earthly ones don’t match up (and none of them ever fully match up, even though there are some awesome dads out there). We can praise him in all his amazingness – hallowed literally means “holy.” We can say that he is holy, set apart, special.
Then we move into some prayer requests. We pray for God’s kingdom to come in all it’s fulness – so the glimpses of glory in healings and miracles that we see now and again would be the daily reality of life. We pray that God’s will – the way he wants the world to be would happen on earth as it already happens on earth. We pray for our needs – our daily bread which doesn’t need to be actual bread but whatever we need food-wise that sustains life. It’s not more than we need, but just a little bit that is enough for each day.
We also ask for God to forgive us our sins, to pardon the wrongs that we have done. But that’s a two way process, as the expectation is that we too would forgive others – to help us to lay down our burdens from the hurts other people have given us and stop carrying them around.
We pray that we would not be led into temptation – it’s not that we can’t have any fun, but that we would know where to draw the lines and not fall into any kind of sin, however interested or exciting it might be. And we pray that we might be safe from the evil one, the devil.
It’s a radical prayer. Why not pray through it slowly, line by line – adding in related requests for each line if they are appropriate?