Jesus said to his disciples:
“In praying, do not babble like the pagans,
who think that they will be heard because of their many words.
Do not be like them.
Your Father knows what you need before you ask him.
This is how you are to pray:” (Mt 6:7-9a)
Jesus taught His disciples many things.
One of the things He taught them was how to pray.
The “Our Father” is one of the most familiar prayers on earth.
In many ways, it is too familiar.
People often rattle off the words without thinking about them.
However, the prayer does many things:
- Acknowledges that God is Father — our creator and our head
- Reminds us that the name of God is holy
- Instructs us to prepare for the coming of God’s Kingdom and to embrace God’s will
- Teaches us to be humble in praying for our daily sustenance
- Asks God to forgive us in the same manner in which we forgive others
- Begs God to keep us clear of the evil one
Wait a minute.
Did I say “Asks God to forgive us in the same manner in which we forgive others?!”
That is why I say it is a “dangerous” prayer.
If we hope for forgiveness, we must be willing to forgive. We cannot expect God to forgive us if we are unwilling to forgive those who wrong us.
His will be done today.
FAITH ACTION: Find a place where you can be comfortable and alone. In silence, pray the Our Father with meaning and conviction.