One day Jesus was praying in a certain place. When He finished, one of His disciples said to Him, “Lord, teach us to pray, just as John taught his disciples.”
He said to them, “When you pray, say:
‘Father, hallowed be your name, your kingdom come.
Give us each day our daily bread.
Forgive us our sins, for we also forgive everyone who sins against us.
And lead us not into temptation.'” (Luke 11:1-4, NIV)
I really like this passage from Luke for a couple of reasons:
- We have an example of Jesus praying. Yes, that Jesus – the Son of God. He raised people from the dead… walked on water… great teacher… and He felt the need to pray to God the Father. Prayer was a regular part of Jesus’ routine, yet I often struggle to make prayer a focused part of my day. If Jesus Himself needed to pray, what makes me think that prayer is an optional activity?
- “One of Jesus’ disciples” was curious. Not only was he curious, but he was BOLD. He saw Jesus praying – probably something he had seen often – and he wanted to know how to pray. He allowed his curiosity to lead him to powerful truths about prayer.
- Jesus answers the request and gives them an example of how to pray. He received the question willingly. I don’t see Jesus being frustrated with this disciple in the passage. I don’t see Jesus making him feel stupid for not knowing how to pray. Instead, I see a willingness to share His wisdom with His friends.
We know prayer is important, and we know we should do it. But, if we are being honest, many of us just don’t know how to pray. Off the top of our heads, we know about the Lord’s Prayer, we pray for our food, we make it a priority to pray for strength and healing, but, sadly, we also know that our prayer lives are usually staggeringly boring and monotonous.
Maybe it’s time to hear some thoughts and ideas on prayer. Sunday morning, June 5th, at 9:30am in Room 230, I am teaching a class on prayer.
I’m still learning a lot about prayer and I’m certainly no expert, but in this class you can expect to learn various methods of praying, hear some stories from fellow believers about how they pray, and get some encouragement for you to connect with God through prayer. Perhaps you are curious, and you need to take a bold step forward in your relationship with God to learn more about prayer. We will see you there!