Sunday 24th July – Prayer

Our service of Sung Eucharist begins at 10am and is followed by fellowship in the hall.

In our Gospel on Sunday, Luke 11:1-13, Jesus’ disciples ask him to teach them how to pray. This might seem a strange request as of course the disciples knew how to pray. They were Jews and prayer formed their days. However they had seen that with Jesus prayer was something special. It was more than duty it was about a relationship with God.

The disciples knew how to pray, but they wanted to know how to pray in the way that Jesus did. To answer Jesus taught them what we know as the Lord’s Prayer, followed by some tips.

Jesus was praying in a certain place, and after he had finished, one of his disciples said to him, "Lord, teach us to pray, as John taught his disciples."
He said to them, "When you pray, say:
Father, hallowed be your name. Your kingdom come.
Give us each day our daily bread.
 And forgive us our sins, for we ourselves forgive everyone indebted to us. And do not bring us to the time of trial."
And he said to them, "Suppose one of you has a friend, and you go to him at midnight and say to him, 'Friend, lend me three loaves of bread; for a friend of mine has arrived, and I have nothing to set before him.'  And he answers from within, 'Do not bother me; the door has already been locked, and my children are with me in bed; I cannot get up and give you anything.'  I tell you, even though he will not get up and give him anything because he is his friend, at least because of his persistence he will get up and give him whatever he needs.  "So I say to you, Ask, and it will be given you; search, and you will find; knock, and the door will be opened for you.  For everyone who asks receives, and everyone who searches finds, and for everyone who knocks, the door will be opened.  Is there anyone among you who, if your child asks for a fish, will give a snake instead of a fish?   Or if the child asks for an egg, will give a scorpion?   If you then, who are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will the heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to those who ask him!"

The Lord’s Prayer is in one sense a contract. Give praise to God and you will be fed. Forgive others and you will be forgiven. Ending with the plea that trails and tribulations will be far from us. It is a simple prayer that covers all we require. There is no need for lengthy prayers with lots of words and explanation to God. God already knows those things we need and those we desire before we ask. God also knows the difference between the two. Sometimes prayers are answered in a way we might not have hoped or expected. Sometimes our desires are really a scorpion and God, in wisdom and love, will answer with an egg.

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