“Jesus is teaching us to converse with our Father in heaven — how we can grow from our infantile fantasies of wanting God on our own terms — to embrace the truth about what God is doing in the world and even in our own prayers.”- Kyle Strobel
“One day Jesus was praying in a certain palace. When he finished, one of his disciples said to him, ‘Lord, teach us to pray, just as John taught his disciples.’ “- Luke 11:1 (NIV)
Kyle Strobel moves on in the Interlude of Where Prayer Becomes Real. In today’s blog, he notes that in the Lord’s Prayer Jesus unveils a deep truth. That we can approach God as a Father who knows our needs. Even before we ask. Therefore, Kyle stresses, here’s the message to us:
“God knows what you need before you even put your prayer into words. Don’t be troubled because you stumble over your words, and don’t worry if you are not passionate enough or sincere enough.”
Yet, Kyle observes, it’s precisely at this juncture where prayer feels so odd. Certainly, we understand that prayer is intimate and honest, although that’s often difficult in practice. Thus, if prayer is a profoundly intimate place, why did Jesus teach us a set prayer? Kyle explains:
“In the Lord’s Prayer, we do in fact discover that Jesus does, in fact, provide us a way . . . to enter into reality. In other words, this prayer conditions and forms how we approach God as his children. It guides and shapes all of our praying, conditioning our prayers according to what is truly real. . . . This is not simply a form prayer; it establishes the movement of how a child prays to their Father. . . . This prayer conditions our prayers by refocusing us on who God is, who we are, and what life in the kingdom is like.”
Finally, prayer serves as the space where we must come to realize that our desires don’t necessarily mesh with the Father’s. Rather than keeping ourselves in the center, we find our lives “hidden with Christ in God” (Colossians 3:3).
Today’s question: What Scriptures help you put away infantile fantasies – God on your terms? Please share.
Tomorrow’s blog: “Place ourselves in reality – pray the Lord’s Prayer”