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SOTM #9 & 10: Pray Like This

August 9, 2010

In our church community we just spent the past two Sunday mornings discussing the Lord’s Prayer. At the very heart of the Sermon On The Mount is a prayer, inviting us to consider how we relate to God and to each other. Some of our focus was on how this prayer exhibits Jesus’ instruction to love God and love others (continuing a SOTM theme; see also Matthew 22:36-40). The Lord’s Prayer is by no means a passive prayer; this is a prayer loaded with action and participation. It invites us to participate in God’s mission, allowing God to use us in realizing God’s kingdom “on earth as it is in heaven”.

I noted the communal aspect of this prayer (with words such as  “us”, “we”, “our”), and set this element against the (in my experience) overly “personal” side of faith that is so common in US evangelicalism. The personal side is, of course, important; I mentioned a personal challenge to recite the prayer three times daily as a way to help establish a new daily rhythm (rather than letting the busyness of life dictate our rhythm). But how can we also allow this prayer to guide us as a community of Jesus followers? For us at SMMC, this has meant intentionally thinking about how we can include greater interaction with the Lord’s Prayer in our corporate worship and practice.

All in all, this is a fantastic passage of scripture to study and practice. The more I interact with this prayer, it seems that God reveals further and greater depths of meaning. To that I have to say, “Amen!”

  1. August 17, 2010 2:22 am

    Sounds really good, Chris. Wish I could have been there! This Fall we have most excellent teacher (also a seminary professor) at our church teaching and leading us through the Lord’s Prayer. I really look forward to it! Good idea to pray it three times daily.

  2. August 19, 2010 8:54 pm

    That LP series sounds great, Ted. It’s great to have teachers like that in the community! Another friend recently recommended to me one of our local seminary profs as a good person to teach on fasting (the subject we’re looking at this week; Matt. 6:16-18). I didn’t have time to set it up for this week, but I’m thinking it would be great to bring him in as a guest speaker on that subject at another time. Blessings!

  3. August 20, 2010 2:56 pm

    Fasting is a topic I need to put back into play, I used to practice it a lot more then I have of late. It is something we in the western church have become accustomed to not doing…

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