Listen to this message (if you missed it or not in town) from Neil Botts, our Executive Pastor at Christ Church, on The Lord’s Prayer. Our current teaching series has a double focus: Learning what a disciple of Jesus is really ‘like;’ and learning from the Master how disciples are ‘made.’
Here is a helpful resource from Neil on developing a life of prayer:
Three Practical Ways to Use The Lord’s Prayer to Develop Your Prayer Life
- Make the Lord’s Prayer the framework for regular daily praying. Take each clause at a time, and, while holding each in turn in the back of your mind, call into the front of your mind the particular things you want to pray for as it were, under that heading. Under the clause ‘Thy Kingdom Come’, for example, include the peace of the world with some particular instances where conflict is raging, whether it be in Syria or your city or your family. The important thing is to let the heart of Jesus’ prayer encircle the people for whom you are praying, the situations about which you are concerned, so that you see them bathed in the healing light of the Lord’s love as expressed in the prayer.
- Use the Lord’s Prayer as a form of breath prayer. Repeat it slowly, again and again, in the rhythm of your breathing, so that it becomes almost second nature. Those of us who live busy or stressful lives may find a discipline like this very difficult; but, again, it may be precisely people like that who need the calming and nourishing medicine of this prayer to be woven into the fabric of their subconscious. Next time you make a car journey by yourself, leave the radio switched off, and try it. Yes, it takes times. What else would you expect?
- Take the clauses of the prayer one by one and make each in turn your ‘prayer for the day’. Sunday: Our Father. Monday: Thy Kingdom Come. Tuesday: Give us this day. Wednesday: Forgive us. Thursday: Lead us. Friday: Deliver us. Use the clause of each day into which you can step at any moment, through which you can pray for the people you meet, the things you’re doing, all that’s going on around you. This prayer then becomes the lens through which you see the world.
*There are dozens of other ways in which this prayer can be used. These are just suggestions to get started. The three listed above are adapted from The Lord and His Prayer by N.T. Wright.