November 20, 2022 Bulletin

Matthew 6:9-13ESV

Mountian of Prayer

Morning Prayer: The Lord's Prayer


  “HALLOWED BE YOUR NAME,” is a commitment to submission. 


 “YOUR KINGDOM COME, YOUR WILL BE DONE ON EARTH AS IT IS IN HEAVEN,” is a commitment to Kingdom of God partnership. 


“GIVE US THIS DAY, OUR DAILY BREAD,” is a commitment to heavenly dependence. 


“FORGIVE US OUR SINS AS WE FORGIVE THOSE WHO SIN AGAINST US,” is a commitment to true relational holiness. 


“LEAD US NOT INTO TEMPTATION, BUT DELIVER US FROM THE EVIL ONE,” is a commitment turn from distraction.  

Prayer Rhythm

Prayer Rhythms 

In the Hebrew and early Christian tradition there has always been a daily prayer rhythm to pause and pray - morning, midday, and evening. We see this in the life of Jesus and with the apostles in the early church. We want to recover this historic practice.


Morning Prayer

One day Jesus was praying in a certain place. When he finished, one of his disciples said to him, “Lord, teach us to pray, just as John taught his disciples.” 


“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.  Luke 11:1, Matthew 6:9-13 


The Lord’s Prayer

The Lord’s Prayer is the Church’s most famous prayer because it came right from the mouth of Jesus, himself. Throughout church history, this prayer has always served as both a model and a guide for Christ- followers around the world. When we pray The Lord’s Prayer, we are entering into the prayer school of Jesus, allowing his prayers to guide our prayers. Allow each line to be thematic, adding your own words to Christ’s words. 


“Our Father in Heaven…”

Begin with prayers of adoration. In the way Jesus addresses God, he reminds us of three holy realities: God’s majesty, approachability, and restoration. God is “in heaven,” holy and other. He is incomprehensibly powerful and the true source and satisfaction of every human desire. God is also “Father,” inviting us to come before Him not merely as beggars but as children and heirs to His Kingdom. Through Jesus, God is more than just my Father but “Our Father.” He makes everyone—my family, friends, co-workers, even strangers and passers-by—into sisters and brothers. 


“Hallowed be your name…”

To hallow means to set aside as holy. Spend a moment recognizing God as holy - as the unique one worthy of your affection.  You may want to recognize and name the blessings in your life, connecting the gifts back to the giver. You could recite a Psalm, sing a worship anthem, or sit in silence, savoring the presence of God over all and in all. 


“Your Kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as it is in Heaven…”

Spend a few minutes asking for God’s will to be done in your life. This part of the prayer about releasing control. What are you currently wrestling for control over—something you’ve never released from God or find yourself grabbing back from him? Name it and release it to God. You may want to repeatedly pray, “Your will be done,” a few times. Releasing our own control, we ask for God’s Kingdom in our midst. Simply, clearly, and specifically ask that God’s Kingdom would come where it lacks. Think of friends outside of relationship with Jesus, needs in our city and world, situations (professional, social, and personal), and even emotions within yourself. Anywhere and everywhere you know God’s Kingdom of love and peace is lacking, ask for Jesus to come. 


“Give us today our daily bread…”

Now spend a few minutes praying for specific needs and wants in your life or that of your community—a job, healing, or wisdom to make a decision. 


“Forgive us our debts, as we have also forgiven our debtors…”

Ask God for forgiveness for specific areas in your life, and releasing others to forgiveness. You may just want to pray aloud the short phrase, “Father, forgive me” or “Father, help me forgive.” 


“And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil…”

Finally, spend a few minutes praying against temptation — this word can also be translated as trouble — in your life. Pray against any kind of evil - spiritual evil, human evil or oppression, natural disasters, systemic injustice, etc. Pray against bad things in your life or community, and ask for God’s blessing - the divine flow of good things into your life and community. 


“For yours is the Kingdom and the power and the glory forever and ever. Amen.”



References

Staton, T. (2022). Praying like monks, living like fools: An invitation to the wonder and mystery of prayer. Zondervan.

Discussion Guide

Review The Last Practice

  1. How has Midday Prayer for the lost been going for you?
  2. Who are you praying for? And does anyone have any stories they’d like to share about how God is using that time — perhaps how it’s shaping you or how you’re seeing God respond?
  3. Does anyone have any creative ideas or suggestions that helped them remember to pray at midday?


Read This Overview Aloud Together

The goal of this three-part Daily Prayer Rhythm is for each of us to build the habit of communing with God in the normal parts of our lives, so that we can grow in intimacy with him and participate in his coming Kingdom in and around us. So, as we continue building this ancient Practice into our own lives, the next layer to add is morning prayer. For our Morning Prayer Rhythm, we will set aside a few minutes at the beginning of each day and pray through the prayer that Jesus taught his disciples, what we now call the Lord’s Prayer.


Those closest to Jesus saw and felt the intimacy he had with his Father in Heaven and asked him to teach them to pray so that they could experience God that way too. But Jesus wasn’t after teaching them what to pray — he wanted to teach them how. When we pray through the Lord’s Prayer, we too are being taught how to pray by Jesus himself, allowing his prayers to guide our prayers. Jesus’ words become a jumping off point for our own intimacy with God. He offered a prayer framework that has been and is a model and a guide for the global, historic church. 


Do This Practice Tonight

Tonight, we want to practice this rhythm in a way that offers a tangible framework we can use when praying The Lord’s Prayer each morning. 

We will pray through the Lord’s Prayer piece by piece. And, as we do, we will allow each line to be thematic, adding our own words to Christ’s words. After I read each prompt, we will be directed to pray silently to ourselves, all out loud together, or just a few of us out loud, one at a time.


Our Father in Heaven – As we begin, we open with prayers of adoration. Jesus reminds us here of three aspects of God: God’s majesty, God’s approachability, and God’s restoration. God is “in Heaven,” incomprehensibly powerful and the true source and satisfaction of every human desire. God is also “Father,” so we come to Him not as beggars but as children and heirs to his Kingdom. But, through Jesus, God is more than just my Father, he is “our Father.” In God, everyone — family, friends, co-workers, and even strangers — becomes sister and brother. Let’s all pray out loud together, thanking God for who he is and what he’s doing.


Hallowed be your name – To “hallow” means to set aside as holy. Let’s spend a moment silently to ourselves recognizing God as holy, as the unique One worthy of our affection. You can recognize and name the blessings in your life to connect the gifts back to the Giver, recite a Psalm to yourself, or sit in silence, savoring the presence of God over all and in all.


Your Kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as it is in Heaven – Next, let’s ask for God’s will to be done in our life and world. Releasing our own control, we ask for God’s Kingdom in our midst. Simply, clearly, and specifically, let’s ask that God’s Kingdom would come where our world lacks it. Think of friends not in relationship with Jesus, needs in our city and world, situations (professional, social, and personal), and even emotions within yourself. Let’s all pray out loud together for anywhere and everywhere that comes to mind where God’s Kingdom of love and peace is lacking.


Give us today our daily bread – Now we’ll spend some time praying for specific needs and wants in our lives or that of our Community—a job, healing, or wisdom to make a decision. Let’s again pray one at a time, so that we can agree with the one petitioning God.


Forgive us our debts, as we have also forgiven our debtors – Let’s take some time to quietly reflect on the areas in our life where we have sinned and where we have been sinned against. Let’s ask God for forgiveness for specific areas in your life, and for help to release others into forgiveness.


And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil – Finally, we’ll spend some time praying both against temptation (which can also be translated “trouble”) in our lives and against any kind of evil (spiritual evil, human evil or oppression, natural disasters, systemic injustice, etc.) in our world. Let’s pray all out loud together for God’s deliverance from evil for us or our Community, asking instead for God’s blessing — the divine flow of good things into our lives and Community.


(Leader, simply pray the following words to close.) For yours is the Kingdom and the power and the glory forever and ever. Amen


References

Staton, T. (2022). Praying like monks, living like fools: An invitation to the wonder and mystery of prayer. Zondervan.


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