Closing the Gap 6.22.18

Week 24 “How to Pray” Day 5

Pray:

Ask God to reorient you to Himself. Confess any known sin. Thank Him for His forgiveness. Be still and reflect on Jesus and His sacrifice for you. Ask the Holy Spirit to open your heart and mind to God’s Word. Pray for others in your life that they, too, would know and love God today.

Read:

Matt. 6:9-13 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. Forgive us our debts, as we also have forgiven our debtors. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from the evil one.”

Reflect:

Solomon wrote that “God has set eternity in our hearts” (Eccl. 3:11).  In general, people think more often about God than any other thing. Even those who do not really love him, think about him.  But these thoughts can be quite different, depending on the kind of relationship they have to him. For some, God is a sort of elderly figure, looking down on them in a sort of detached way.  He is sometimes amused, sometimes annoyed, but he is largely impotent. He is their “grandfather in heaven.” Others think of God as their “policeman in heaven.” He lurks on the side of life’s highways, ready to bring judgment if any laws are broken.  Fortunately for them, they do not believe he is always attentive to them, sometimes he is too busy pulling someone else over to notice what they are doing. Still others believe God is “my buddy” in heaven. He is understanding, reasonable, and able to be negotiated with.  In fact, he exists entirely for their perceived good. He is a sort of wealthy benefactor who doesn’t judge and has no real standards other than “a good time is had by all.” There are, of course, many other perceptions of God that people hold in their minds and often those perceptions shift from one view to another.  This is a terrible thing. It is commonly believed that, in regard to matters of faith, it doesn’t really matter what you believe only that you do believe.  We certainly don’t think this about how airplanes operate, or what foods humans should consume, or virtually any other aspect of reality.  Because we know that in the “real world” it is of vital importance that we believe and act in line with is actually true. The same is true in regard to who God is, but with even more importance.  It is even more important because getting it right regarding who God is impacts both time and eternity. Jesus said he is our “Holy Father.” We must hold his revealed nature consistently in our minds.  Who he actually is must overthrow any false ideas of him in our minds. We must believe, value, and live in line with the reality that he is “Our Father” and his name is to be “hallowed.”

Pray:

(Personalize this prayer today; make it specific to the circumstances that face you.)

Ask God to lead you through His Spirit as you go through your day. Ask Him to bring to mind the truth of the gospel and its implications for what you will encounter today. Tell Him “Yes” to His will and ask Him for His power and protection to live this “yes.” Ask God to create and reveal opportunities to proclaim the good news today.

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