Sunday, October 12, 2014

The Pocket Power Prayer

The effective prayer that Jesus modeled has traditionally been seen as The Lord's Prayer. It's actually a prayer model that Jesus suggested to his disciples to use when they prayed (Matthew 6 NKJV). He also admonished them to not use vain repetitions, which raises a question. If we pray this prayer regularly, aren't we using repetition?

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The answer is in Verse 9, where Jesus encourages them to pray "in this manner."
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He does not tell them to pray that prayer. In this manner means that he was providing a template, a format for them to use in creating their own prayer to God the Father

It is easy for man to get in a rut and to perform actions without thinking or feeling. Man also faces the danger of performing to receive glory from others, and to make a good impression. Jesus says that the only value that is received for that kind of behavior is what is gotten from others at that moment. There is no long term, spiritual benefit from performing vain repetitions to impress others. If we perform for others, it is easy to use vain repetitions because there is no heart in our display.

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If we pray in private, making our prayer session between us and God alone, it is easy to use his prayer model to construct our own prayer, because our innermost feelings are drawn out.
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It would be beneficial for you to create a prayer in your own words, using Jesus' model. I call it the Pocket Power Prayer, because it packs a lot of power in its small size. You would then pray it often, adding extra thoughts and feelings to it whenever they come up in your spirit. In this way, you will reduce the chance of making it repetitious.

This prayer model is useful when we don't know what to pray, but want to commune with God. I was on my knees and wanted to pray once, but just felt tired and uninspired. I decided to pray The Lord's Prayer, because I had heard that it covers everything.

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I prayed it from the heart, carefully pronouncing each word and thinking deeply about the meaning of each phrase.
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The most interesting thing happened! When I finished, I wanted to continue praying, adding more to cover all of my concerns of that moment, but I could not pray anything else. When I began to say a statement, it felt like I'd already prayed it. I felt that it was already covered. So it is true that when Jesus spoke this prayer model to his disciples, he presented a perfect prayer format.

This is my prayer rewrite. You are welcome to use it whenever you would like, but I encourage you to write your own. Just rewrite each phrase of The Lord's Prayer in your own words. There are no perfect or right words or sentences. Just follow Jesus' format. As long as it makes sense to you God will understand and commune with you, because as Jesus said, "For your Father knows the things you have need of before you ask Him" (Matthew 6:8 NKJV). This does not replace our open lines of communication with God, or our short or long prayers to God at any time.  It's an additional tool. If you look closely, you can see how I have followed Jesus' model for praying to God.

Dear Father, who lives in heavenly places that we can't yet see. May we respect your name continuously. May your inner glory fill us and your outer glory consume the world in due time. We embrace your daily plan in our lives and all around us, and throughout the world, just as your plans are carried out in the heavenly places. Thank you for providing food today, in whatever way it shall come.

We choose to forgive everyone who has misused, damaged or failed us. We know that in return we have your forgiveness, through your Son Jesus' sacrifice, for our sin state and all that it entails. Thank you for providing a way out of cowardice when we are tried, so that we can hold on and endure the testing. In this way, we know that we will be delivered from the evil of faithlessness and fear.  We know that you own everything, Father. You possess power over all things, and all glory belongs to you. Amen

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Image Credit: Wallpapers Wide
Scriptures Taken From: Bible Study Tools

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