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.
After showing the disciples what prayer isn’t (see Matthew 6:5-8), Jesus revealed the essence of prayer by teaching them to say, “Our Father…”
Jesus shocks the disciples and us by telling us that we are to approach the Almighty not as subjects but as children. We’re to call Him “Father.” And this is a revolution as well as a revelation. We pray to reaffirm our standing, and enjoy the blessings and privileges of being a child of the King.
A king has many subjects but only a few share his bloodline, making them “royals.” The king’s children don’t just live in the kingdom, they occupy the palace. They live with, and have direct access to, the king himself. By teaching us to address God as “Father,” Jesus is letting us know that just having a “personal relationship” with God is not enough.
In the Kingdom of heaven, God desires kinship.And maybe that’s why we struggle in prayer and have trouble walking in kingdom power. We’re approaching God as King but not as kin.
The implications of this are staggering. If God is our Father, Jesus is our brother! In teaching His disciples to address God the same way He did, Jesus puts us on equal standing with Himself! When I pray, I am at home with God. God is not a “guest” in my home. I am His “home.” (See John 14:20, 23.) We are kin. We live together and prayer is the love language spoken in the family.
Alter Your Altar
Today reflect on the opening line, “Our Father in heaven.” Tomorrow, you’ll do the same with “Hallowed be your name,” etc. Let family members share what these phrases mean to them. If a phrase is hard to comprehend or to relate to, be sure to take time to process it through. Ask what it meant to the disciples when Jesus taught them, and then what it means to us today. Ask Who, What, When, Where, Why and How questions and then use your sharing time to focus your prayers.
Please pray . . .
- For the relationship that “our Father in heaven” desires to have with each of us.
- For Auburn Adventist Academy & Baker View Christian School (currently closed and praying about reopening in two years).
- For our Washington Conference pastors and teachers.