Life makes us all move quickly, doesn’t it? Work, family, relationships, and responsibilities stack on top of each other like stress legos. Even the strongest people will find themselves exhausted.
In the midst of your commotion and chaos, take some time to slow down. Take a break. Find a quiet place. Retreat. Turn off the notifications. Just be still before God. While your body needs movement, your soul needs stillness.
Prayer helps you slow down and recalibrate your life. It is a direct line to the power of God. There is no greater blessing than going before your cosmic God in direct communication. So, how do you improve your prayer life and get the most out of your time with Jesus?
JESUS TEACHES US HOW TO PRAY:
Let’s explore the words of Jesus when he taught his disciples how to pray. This acts as a framework for our faith formation.
“This, then, is how you should pray: “Our Father in heaven, hallowed be your name, your kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven. Give us today our daily bread. And forgive us our debts, as we also have forgiven our debtors. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from the evil one.”Matthew 6:9-13
Let’s zoom into one phrase in this passage. Jesus says, “Give us this day, our daily bread.” Christ is making two assumptions.
First, that we must pray every day.
This goes far beyond praying before a meal or during church on Sundays. We should allow prayer to be at the forefront of our daily routines. Just like physical health struggles without exercise, spiritual health struggles without prayer. Commit, from this day forward, to pray every single day.
Second, we should pray before we do anything else.
When he mentions “daily bread,” this is likely an allusion to breakfast. Prayer should be the launchpad of your entire day. We should talk to God before we talk to anyone else. Before your next meeting, talk to God. Before you sit at your computer, talk to God. Before you meet up with your gym buddies, talk to God. Let God be the first and last person you speak to. This will radically transform all your relationships.
THE LORD’S PRAYER TEACHES US THREE IMPORTANT PRINCIPLES OF PRAYER:
When Jesus taught us how to pray, the first line says, ‘Hallowed be Your name” (Matthew 6:9). A crucial ingredient of effective prayer is rejoicing. Jesus celebrated God’s character, goodness, and holiness in the very first line. We often approach prayer like a wish list, but it’s actually worship.
Jesus then urges us to reflect on what God’s been doing and where He’s taking us. He achieves this using the language of “Kingdom.” He explains, “your kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven.”
Take some intentional time to reflect on all God has brought you through and what He’s taking you through now. Yes, He certainly knows all about it. Like talking to a counselor or writing in a journal, processing our experiences gives us a renewed attitude of gratitude. Share your concerns. Explain your plans. Talk through your next steps. This is where prayer gets extra personal. As you reflect on your thoughts and feelings, God will step in and direct your steps. Whatever you’re working through, invite God into the process.
We often think of prayer in the context of prayer requests. Prayer requests are good, but they’re only a sliver of a satisfying prayer life. In the last part of the Lord’s Prayer, Christ asks for provision, deliverance, and forgiveness. These are all requests. Be bold in your requests to our almighty God and believe He will move.
When teaching his friends how to pray, Jesus took them from rejoicing to reflecting and then to requesting. We often skip the first two and head right into requesting. It’s a natural temptation. Why? Because life can be hard and uncertain. Thus, we want God to intervene. However, prayer is so much bigger than asking God to change our circumstances. What God ultimately desires is that through a faithful prayer life, He will transform you.
15-Minute Video Bible Studies About Prayer from the LFC circles App:
Ways to Pray
Why We Pray
Watch more Bible studies by downloading the free LFC circles App in any app store.