9 “This, then, is how you should pray”:
“‘Our Father in heaven,
hallowed be your name,
10 your kingdom come,
your will be done
on earth as it is in heaven.
11 Give us today our daily bread.
12 Forgive us our debts,
as we also have forgiven our debtors.
13 And lead us not into temptation,
but deliver us from the evil one.’”

14 For if you forgive men when they sin against you, your heavenly Father will also forgive you. 15 But if you do not forgive men their sins, your Father will not forgive your sins.

Matt 6:9-15 (NIV)

“Prayer is not so much an act as it is an attitude – an attitude of dependency, dependency upon God.” A. W. Pink

In our verses for today, the Lord Jesus presents us with a model prayer which His disciples are to follow – an example containing elements important for our petitions to include. Christ rightly begins His pattern of prayer with worship. Worship, reverence and thanksgiving to the Holy Father are to be the essence of all of our prayers. It is both fitting and upright to praise the Lord – praising Him in all His perfections. We do not praise Him because He needs it rather we praise Him because He deserves it – it is well and proper for us to praise Him. This gives us the correct perspective of both Who He is and who we are. Certainly we should give God the glory due His Name before we expect to receive His mercy and grace. Everything is of Him and through Him therefore all must be to Him and for Him. Just as the Psalmist declares, we are to enter His gates with thanksgiving and into His courts with praise:

2 Worship the LORD with gladness; come before him with joyful songs. 3 Know that the LORD is God. It is he who made us, and we are his; we are his people, the sheep of his pasture. 4 Enter his gates with thanksgiving and his courts with praise; give thanks to him and praise his name. Psalms 100:2-4 (NIV)

“Be eager for more frequent gatherings for thanksgiving to God and for His glory.” Ignatius of Antioch

“There is a danger of forgetting that the Bible reveals not first the love of God, but the intense, blazing holiness of God.” Oswald Chambers

Certainly there is nothing more pleasing and pleasant both to us and to God than for His children to call Him “Abba Father” Who thankfully pities us in our weaknesses and infirmities as well as denies us nothing that is ultimately for our good and His glory. He is on His throne in heaven and from there maintains a full and crystal clear view of our burdens and needs as well as our weaknesses. God knows us through and through and is fully aware of the attitudes and thoughts of our hearts. He is not only willing but He is also able to help us do great and marvelous things - feats too hard for mere flesh to accomplish. He gladly comes to the aid of those seeking to do right.

“Prayer is not overcoming God’s reluctance, but laying hold of His willingness.” Martin Luther

10 So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand. Isaiah 41:10 (NIV)

4 Since ancient times no one has heard, no ear has perceived, no eye has seen any God besides you, who acts on behalf of those who wait for him. 5 You come to the help of those who gladly do right, who remember your ways. Isaiah 64:4-5 (NIV)

Next, Jesus tells us to seek God’s will in order that He may be glorified and we may be most satisfied. The Lord Jesus came to do His Father’s will setting the example for His disciples to follow. We are to line up our wants with the will of the Fathers. All requests are to be in subordination and pursuant of His righteousness and glory. We are to pray that He may rule us in “your will be done” as a demonstration of trust in Him that He has our best interest at heart. We do well to pray for the knowledge of His will and the ability to obey it – both are necessary for the child of the King. There is no better place on earth to be than in the center of His will – mature and fully assured. Our prayers are for earth to be more like heaven by the observance of God’s will.

12 Epaphras, who is one of you and a servant of Christ Jesus, sends greetings. He is always wrestling in prayer for you, that you may stand firm in all the will of God, mature and fully assured. Col 4:12 (NIV)

"The only way to end up at the right destination is to choose the right road." Warren Wiersbe

Our petitions are to be not only for that which is most wholesome – bread - but also for that which is most daily. We are to speak in a direct and specific manner for the things we both need and desire - always according to His will - and with an expectation to draw from Him upon the unlimited resources of heaven. We need not worry about tomorrow but day by day depend on His mercies and grace – just like He taught the Israelites in the wilderness with the manna. The greatest of men are to be indebted to God for the mercy of their daily needs. The Lord also prays to keep us from temptation and to protect us from the evil one – of which we are powerless apart from Christ to defend ourselves. Lastly, we must pray for our daily pardon. Our hearts prayer to the Father is to be for the forgiveness of our sins – just as we forgive those who sin against us. Believer, do not harbor unforgiveness in your hearts if you desire you own forgiveness.

What I Glean

  • God is holy and I am to approach Him with reverence and thanksgiving.
  • God is fully aware of my needs and is willing to help me.
  • The best pace on earth for me to be is in the center of His perfect and pleasing will.