The Gospel this coming Sunday, Luke 11:1-13, has one of Jesus’ disciples asking him to teach them how to pray. Jesus then proceeds to teach them the “Our Father.” (Luke 11:2-4)
“Father, hallowed be your name,
your kingdom come.
Give us each day our daily bread.
and forgive us our sins
for we ourselves forgive everyone in debt to us,
and do not subject us to the final test.”
The prayer Jesus taught his disciples was simple, praising God, asking God and forgiveness from God. Today the prayer we pray gives more description.
“Our Father, who art in heaven, hallowed be thy name;
thy kingdom come, thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven.
Give us this day our daily bread, and forgive us our trespasses,
as we forgive those who trespass against us;
and lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil.”
This shows us there is more than one way to pray. We can pray the prayers we have been taught from our parents and the church. We can also pray from our heart. Praying from our heart is something that happens at the moment without any thought or preparation. It can happen when we hear someone is asking for prayers and we say a quick prayer of healing, strength or love. It can be when we experience something wonderful and we praise God. It can be during our time we set aside to be with God in the morning or the evening. There is no set time or way to pray.
Do you pray in one of these ways? Or do you pray both ways? There is not one correct way to pray. I believe that is what Jesus was teaching his disciples. When we grow in our relationship with God, our Father, our prayers grow.
The Father does not mind how you pray, just that you pray, that you take the time to be with him. The time spent with Him lets your relationship grow. When your relationship grows it helps you to go to the Father when you need help, when you are happy or anytime of the day. The more we are comfortable going to the Father the easier life can be because we trust that he is with us and he will help us deal with the stress, anxiety, illnesses, problems we encounter each day. The Father is there and wants to help you, Luke 11:9. “And I tell you, ask and you will receive; seek and you will find, knock and the door will be opened to you.”
– Sr. Barb Knauf