For most of my life, this portion of prayer has been my primary and first address to God. I would dive into asking for things as driven by my immediate circumstances instead of FIRST considering: 1. my familial relationship with God; 2. God’s greatness, and, 3. the vitally important purpose He has given my life. By now, you realize that these are the first three movements of prayer we’ve covered so far. But, the truth is, we ALL tend to pray first about our immediate physical and emotional needs. We are like the child of a very wealthy king who is so unaware of her position, the power of her father and her heritage that she makes short-sighted requests of her father rather than utilizing mega-resources of her heritage.
While God absolutely cares about our physical and emotional needs, we need to remember that we were meant for so much more!
So now let us pray….
“Give us this day our daily bread.”Matthew 6:11
“Give me neither poverty nor riches. Feed me with the food alloted to me; lest I be full and deny You, and say, ‘Who is the Lord?’ Or lest I be poor and steal, and profane Your name.” (Proverbs 30:8-9) Oh Lord, please don’t bless me so much that I forget I need you. But also—give me enough so that I do not have to scrabble to make a living and thus, think you have forgotten me. Help me to be content with what You supply. May wealth and possessions never become more important to me than Your presence.
Lord, supply my needs for today and may I trust You for tomorrow.
“Dear Father, help me not to worry about what I will eat or drink, or what I will wear because You know ALL my needs. Rather, help me seek FIRST Your kingdom and Your righteousness and KNOW everything else will be added to me.” (Matthew 6:31-33) Oh Lord, You created me for a far greater purpose than to worry about my basic needs like food and clothing, but—I know You care. Since You feed the birds of the air and clothe the lilies of the field, I know you will take care of me too. I am created in Your image and Your Son died to redeem my soul. You know what I am going to say before I say it. You know where I am going to go before I go. Show me what I NEED and—if that is different from what I WANT—then change my wants. Be the center of all my needs.
Oh Lord, keep my petitions in line with Your glorious purpose!
“Now this is the confidence that we have in You, Oh God; that if we ask anything according to Your will, You hear us. And we know that You hear us, and whatever we ask, we know that we have the petitions that we have asked of You.” (I John 5:14-15) Oh Lord, may the petitions I bring to you now be only according to Your will. Holy Spirit, guide my prayers. I know it is Your will that none perish from the earth without knowing You, so give me what I need to accomplish Your purpose today. Multiply in me the fruits of Your Spirit. I also bring before you my physical and emotional needs…[get specific here]
Lord, if there is anything I ask NOT according to Your will; don’t give it to me!
We may bring all our petitions to God—great and small. Don’t be afraid to ask—He is Your Father! He will sort out what is good for you and what is not. He desires to give you such great joy!
And now that we have established: 1. Our familial relationship with God; 2. God’s greatness, 3. The vitally important purpose He has given our life; and 4. We have brought our request to Him—it’s time to turn our attention to next part of the Model Prayer:
“Forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors.”Matthew 6:12
Isn’t it interesting that forgiveness is mentioned halfway through this prayer?
Tomorrow we will explore how this portion of our prayer draws us deeper into an extraordinary relationship with God!
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