Monday, July 6, 2009

An In-depth Look at the "Our Father" Prayer

This article by Whitney Hopler entitled "How to Live the Words of the Lord's Prayer" is an excellent, in-depth look at the prayer Jesus shared with his followers, recorded in the 6th chapter of Matthew.

Below is an excerpt from the article:

“Our Father”: Pray for a healthy image of God that reflects Jesus’ experience as “Abba” – an affectionate term for a Father who loves deeply and unconditionally. God isn’t a cold, aloof Creator who has abandoned His people; nor is He an insensitive judge who nonchalantly rules creation heartlessly. God is close to you, pouring out His love into your life no matter what, and offering you strength and courage whenever you need them. Let your gratitude for God’s deep love in your life motivate you to perform selfless acts of sacrificial love for others – just as Christ has done for you. Recognize that you’re part of a huge spiritual family: All people are made in God’s image, and fellow believers are your brothers and sisters in Christ. Since God is “our” Father, spiritual formation is about God, others, and you. Ask God to give you the love He wants you to have for other people. Intercede in prayer for them regularly. Pray for opportunities to use what you’ve learned through your own suffering to help other people who are struggling in similar ways. Welcome and accept all people – no matter how different they are from you.

This article changes this prayer from rote to wonderful.

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