The Template Prayer

Dearly Beloved,

I recently concluded a two-part teaching series expounding what is commonly called ‘The Lord’s Prayer” or “The ‘Our Father’.”  This is the prayer which Jesus gave his disciples when they asked him to teach them to pray (see Luke 11:1-13).  The text of the prayer is also found in Matthew 6:5-15.  

One important point I attempted to make in this sermon is that Jesus was not giving his disciples a set of words to memorize and repeat back to God.  Rather, Jesus was telling his disciples the manner in which they should approach God and the appropriate subject-headings which should be used by his disciples in prayer.  

As part of my concluding remarks on both Sundays I wrote out a contemporary response to Jesus’ teaching on the template prayer.  Below you will find the prayer(s) I shared at the end of each sermon, combined into one text.  I feel compelled to say that my words are an example of how I work through the template, not some kind of definitive example.  Please feel free to write your own.

–geno

P.S.  The recording to the first teaching may be found here.  

A Disciple’s Prayer

Father we commit ourselves to make you famous in all the earth in our generation as we follow you and help those far from you to do he same.

Father, we are a dependent people in need of your daily provision, hungry again, empty again, broken again. Would you grant today, again, your daily bread? I am grateful for your provision, for your sustaining word and for the way you put food on my table. I am grateful to be reminded that you are truly good, a mercy-filled provider eager to bless your children.

I stand in need of forgiveness. I have sinned against you. I am broken and failing to live according to your ways, what I know to be right. Thanks for your mercies, new every morning. Thank you for listening again to the confession of my sins and my failings. Thank you for forgiving me and drawing me near.

I want to live without holding grudges. Help me to let go of the wrong done to me, to forgive the one who has injured me. Let me live without demanding my rights, willing to suffer loss to walk in mercy and grace with those around me. Teach me to forgive like you do.

Father, keep me from the day of trial and testing, but if I must go there, I want to go there with you. Strengthen me. Help me to stand, to pass the test, to say ‘no’ to the tempter and His offer. Rescue me. Deliver me. I also pray for those around me who are being tempted to give up, to give in, to go down the road to destruction. Help each one to make a godly choice, a wise choice, however difficult.

May your name be praised. May you be famous and followed, known as the One who provides, the One who forgives, and the One who rescues.

Amen.

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