Our Spiritual Muscles
Praying Like Jesus – Part IV
Scripture Reading: Matthew 6:9-13
Key Verse: Matthew 9:11
“‘Give us today our daily bread.’”
Let’s continue what we started in yesterday’s devotional, using The Lord’s Prayer as a model of prayer.
First, let me remind you of the point of praying. We pray not because God does not know what we need; He certainly does. Our prayers are really for our own benefit; they are about exercising our spiritual muscles.
So far, in using The Lord’s Prayer as a model for our own praying, we have:
- affirmed that God is our Father,
- declared that His very Name is holy and sacred,
- recognized and asked for His Kingdom to rule on earth and in our lives, and
- asked that God does His will on this earth, the same as it is in heaven.
Please take note that every statement in the Lord’s Prayer up to this point has not been about us or our needs. The four statements that we have covered up to this point have been about God.
Now we come to the turning point in the model prayer where we shift focus from God to ourselves.
Today’s Key Verse is the next statement: “Give us today our daily bread”.
When we pray for our daily bread, we can pray about both our needs (food, shelter, clothing, relationships, etc.) and our wants (desires, preferences, wishes, etc.). We are exercising our faith muscles because we believe God can meet our needs as well as our wants. Jesus does not forget about our needs or our wants.
Someone said to me many years ago “I never pray about things for myself, that feels too selfish”. I explained to him that God wants to hear from us and that praying for the things on our mind helps develop our relationship with Him; this is part of the “abundant life” that Jesus died to give us!
We should not start with our needs and wants because that makes our stuff more important than honoring God. But when we get to this point in our prayer, we can pray about whatever is on our minds.
When I come to “give me my daily bread”, I start asking God for the things that I am thinking about or things that are starting to worry me.
I heard someone say recently, “Worry is what we talk to ourselves about, prayer is what we talk to God about.”
Never hesitate to talk to God about whatever is on your mind! You can talk to God about anything and everything. If you care about something, God cares about it.
God answers our prayers with one of three answers: “yes”, “not now”, or “no”. As believers, understand that any of these answers are good because God is always looking out for our best… He is a good, good Father.
Father, thank You for hearing and answering my prayers. Help me to always pray in faith, trusting Your wisdom and power. In Jesus’s Name I pray, amen.