Scripture Matthew 6:9-15 9 Pray then in this way: Our Father in heaven, hallowed be your name. 10 Your kingdom come. Your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven. 11 Give us this day our daily bread . 12 And forgive us our debts, as we also have forgiven our debtors. 13 And do not bring us to the time of trial, but rescue us from the evil one. 14 For if you forgive others their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you; 15 but if you do not forgive others, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses.
Moral of the Story
Prayer is a beginning for our journey towards God.
Stuff that Gets in the Way
When you think about prayer, and its practical application in your life, here are a few things you might be thinking:
"Does prayer actually work, especially when we’re encouraged to pray alone and in silence?" The reality is that no one else knows your strength or absence of a prayer life besides you. To explore this question, look no further than a short video hosted by the Science Channel called Your Brain on Prayer.
"Even if I decided to practice prayer on a more regular basis, it’s not something I learned as a child growing up. Honestly, I’m not exactly sure how to pray." Here’s an article that breaks introduces prayer by taking small steps each day. The author even tells us that learning to pray is like learning Spanish - it takes practice.
"I am a prayer ninja and all I need to do is step it up a notch." If that’s the case, consider creating a prayer room in your home. If that’s your situation, why not check out this prayer room gallery on houzz.com for some inspiration?
Inquiry and Reflection
Ask yourself these questions:
- What, if any, conclusions can you draw from the video, Your Brain on Prayer, about whether or not God is real?
- What prevents you from creating and maintaining a regular prayer practice?
- If you have a prayer practice, what suggestions would you offer to those who are learning this now?
- Where and when do you pray? What changes, if any, would you like to make to your existing prayer practice?
An All-Ages Show
Parents, how often do you pray as a family? Do you practice the Lord’s Prayer together? Here are a few questions you might ask your kids about their own personal prayer habits:
- How often do you pray?
- When you pray, do you talk to God more like a parent or a friend?
- Do you ever feel awkward praying about certain topics?
- Sometimes, do you want to pray but not know what to say? (This is where a prayer like the Lord’s Prayer is a good option.)