One phrase of the Lord’s Prayer is often ignored, but understanding it can be a “quick” way to make a major impact on your prayer time.
…thy kingdom come, thy will be done, on earth as it is in heaven…
The disciples saw the prayers of Jesus and understood that their prayers weren’t nearly as effective. They saw that they needed help and asked for instruction. The Lord’s prayer gives us a pattern or model upon which we can build effective prayers. In that model prayer Jesus told us to first stop and recognize who we are talking to… Our father, in heaven, whose name is hallowed (honored and lifted up). After we understand that we then need to be willing to meet God on his terms.
We should pray that:
- thy kingdom (God’s kingdom) come….. instead of immediately moving in our prayers to a series of requests needs we need to align ourselves with God and His kingdom. In another context Jesus told His followers to “seek first” the kingdom of God. Focusing on God’s kingdom as opposed to our own kingdom allows God to “add all these things” to us.
- thy will be done….not our will, not the things we think are important. Jesus taught that whatever we asked “in his name” would be granted. But focusing in on what is in His will and what will honor His name is vastly different than putting the emphasis on what we want and what will bring honor to our name.
Do we spend enough time in our prayers to get to the point where we are will to say to God, “I accept your will” — even if I don’t like it, even if I don’t understand it, even if it costs me, even if I hate what it means for me?
Do we spend enough time in our prayers to bring us to a place where we are willing to take “no” for an answer? We can take yes, or maybe, but are will also willing to accept when God’s will requires a definitive “NO”?