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Matthew 6:9a

Pray Like This, Part I

9a After this manner therefore pray ye: Our Father which art in heaven, ....

I work primarily in multihousing ministries, and ninety percent of the ministry is with children. I give the kids a lot of memory verses to learn. I try to find the verse's natural rhythm, and then we repeat it over and over like a verse of rap music. It is an effective teaching tool.

However, if a child volunteers to lead a prayer, I will not allow him to say a memorized prayer such as "God is great, God is good....etc" Prayer is not empty, cold repetitions of something we memorized. Prayer is communication with God.

When Jesus said, "After this manner therefore pray ye....", He meant exactly what the words imply. "This is the way you should pray." He did not intend for the prayer to be memorized and repeated back to God every time we pray. What value would there be in that? But, use this prayer as a guide concerning what type of things you should talk to God about and their order of importance.

"Our Father..." tells us that there is a relationship between God and all men. He is the Father of both the righteous and the wicked men of His creation. He brought them into existence and cares for each without any partiality.

He is much more the Father of those who have received Christ as their Savior (John 1:12). He has adopted us to be His children, heirs to His kingdom, and has opened the doors to His throne room for us. We are welcome any time and under any circumstances. He is a Father who enjoys giving to us, correcting us, teaching us, and helping us mature as godly men and women.

In a sense, we possess Him as our own....not like property nor like someone whom we can manipulate, but as our Father whom we love. When I am with Him, He is my Father. He hears everything I say, takes time to understand how I feel, comforts me through His Holy Spirit. He never says, "Wait a minute, Dave, I have to hear Angela's prayers first." He is my God, always there for me!

I would not like it very much, if the only thing my children ever said to me was something that they had memorized. I want to know about them....what they want, how they feel, what they think is funny, and what is bothering them. Our Father in heaven deserves so much more consideration than I.

You may be separated from your earthly father, unable to speak to him every day, abandoned by him or perhaps he has gone on to eternity. But every day can be Father's day when we turn to our heavenly Father in prayer. Let Him know thAt He is YOUR Father.

Before The Throne:

Today when you pray, talk to your Father. Celebrate Him, praise Him, thank Him, be open and honest with Him and enjoy His company. Like any good father, He is anxious to hear from you and to spend time with you. Take advantage of Him, because you will be the one who benefits the most.

For Further Study:

** this. Luke 11:1-2 ** Our. Matt 5:16, 48; Matt 7:11; Matt 10:29; Matt 26:29, 42; Isa 63:16; Isa 64:8; Luke 15:18, 21; John 20:17; Rom 1:7; Rom 8:15; Gal 1:1; Gal 4:6; 1Pet 1:17; ** which. Matt 23:9; 2Chr 20:6; Ps 115:3; Isa 57:15; Isa 66:1;


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