With the conclusion and “amen,” the Lord’s Prayer is 70 words. In a brilliantly concise manner, Jesus answered the request of his disciples, “Teach us to pray.” What does this prayer mean? How does it bring clarity to our lives? How does it affect our relationship with God? What if we prayed it – seriously prayed it – every day?
In this short prayer, we are invited into a conversation with the living God. Let’s find out what it means and what difference it makes.
The Lord’s Prayer: The Habit of Prayer – April 2/3
Intro: Why You Need a Father – April 9/10
First: Why His Name Matters – April 16/17
Second: Why You Need the Kingdom – April 23/24
Third: Why His Will is Best – April 30/May 1
Fourth: How To Live Day-by-Day – May 7/8
Fifth: Why Forgiveness Matters – May 21/22
Sixth: How to Face Temptation – May 28/29
Seventh: What to do with Evil – June 4/5
Conclusion: Why the Amen is Important – June 11/12
Habits of Prayer:
- Set a routine of prayer. A designated time and place every day.
- Pray just one phrase for a day. For instance “thy kingdom come.” And related that one petition to all aspects of your life and any needs that you see.
- Relate each part of the Lord’s Prayer to various spheres of your life. Pray each one in relation to:
- Your own life.
- The lives of your family and friends.
- Your neighborhood/community.
- Your church.
- Your workplace or school.
- The broader city, state, country.
- The world.
- Go on a walk in your neighborhood and pray this as you walk.
Various approaches to group prayer:
- Random Sharing of Requests and Praying. This gives the people who want to share and/or pray an opportunity to do so and the people who don’t want to an opportunity to decline. The negative is that certain people may dominate week after week. Try to keep requests balanced.
- Sharing and Praying in a Circle. Tell the people in the group that they are going to share requests as you go around the room and that the person on their right ought to be prepared to pray for them. If you go this route, you ought to tell people that they are free to decline if they would like.
- Using Liturgical Forms. By using a form, someone leads and the rest join in on that topic in informal prayer. For example, the leader could read a petition of the Lord’s Prayer, there is then a pause and group members can pray according to that petition. You can also look in The Book of Common Prayer or The Lutheran Book of Prayer for more forms.
- Using Historical Prayers. We can greatly enrich our prayer lives by looking at the prayers of Christians in earlier times. There are numerous resources available for this, talk to an elder if you would like some recommendations.
- Shared Prayer. Essentially, you are cutting out the time of sharing previous to the actual praying. Have people share their request as they briefly pray, then a few others can follow by also praying for that request. When they have finished, another person mentions their request through prayer and two more follow him up by adding their support through their prayer.
- Praying Scripture. The leader reads a passage of Scripture outloud, slowly, and the group members silently pray and meditate upon it. A variation of this is Lectio Divina (feel free to talk to an elder if you’d like more info and resources regarding Lectio Divina).