Simplicity in Prayer

As you may already know, I relish in keeping things simple. The Christian life is wonderfully deep and profound (trinity, incarnation, theories of the atonement, eschatology, pneumatology, etc.) and yet amazingly simple, “For God so loved the world…” Gods design is that anyone can seek and find him. Both the intellectual and the simplest mind can come to trust in his marvelous gift!

Coming to the topic of prayer, it too is deep, and yet beautifully simple. I want us to reflect on the Lord’s Prayer today in the most basic way. In the back of my mind, I’m continually reminded of two verses, one from the New Testament and one from the older. In Ecclesiastes 5:2 it says “God is in heaven and you are on earth, so let your words be few” (hasty or lengthy diatribes seem to be the “sacrifice of fools” mentioned earlier in this passage). In Matthew 6 Jesus says “when you pray, do not keep on babbling like pagans, who think they will be heard because of their many words, do not be like them for your father in heaven knows what you need before you ask him.” It’s then that Jesus goes into how we should pray and gives us in very few words what we know as the Lord’s Prayer (Matthew 6:9-13). But really its the disciples prayer, because he was giving them, and us, a model or a framework of how to pray…. and it’s pretty simple :)
“Our Father in heaven, hallowed be your name, your kingdom come, your will be done on earth as it is in heaven “
He is Holy… his plan is best. We worship an awesome God. It’s about keeping that perspective.

“Give us today our daily bread”
We need stuff…pray for it. This part is about his marvelous provision.

“And forgive us our debts as we also have forgiven our debtors”
We need his pardon. Everyday. Oh, and remember, forgiven people ought to forgive others.

“And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from the evil one” In case you forget that there is an evil one… look around you. We need divine protection. The battle is real. The all powerful God of heaven is on our side, and tells us to call on him.

I love this prayer that Jesus leaves for us. It’s simple, it’s brief, and also beautiful. None of us need a lot of words when we come to the Father. He already knows… he just wants to hear from his children.

If you want an awesome prayer life, simply pray to our awesome God. This prayer he left us reflects humility, submission and honesty… we come to our Father and curl up in his lap. Very few words need to be spoken.

Pete Nelson