|The Lord's Prayer|
A Note from Pastor Mark
Thank you for taking a copy of this devotional guide. It is my prayer that God blesses it to you and makes it useful in your life. This devotional guide is designed for the believer who wants to grow and develop in his or her spiritual life. I believe a person in junior high can understand and use this guide, althought it may be a stretch for her or him. Those in high school and older should have no trouble understanding what is presented. The devotions are designed to take about 30 minutes to complete. If you have more than 30 minutes, you can surely spend more time thinking and praying about the material you study and receive a great benefit. If 30 minutes is a stretch for you time-wise, I’d encourage you to give it a try. If you find that you just can’t carve out that much time, I’d encorage you to do each lesson over two or three days. If you do that, keep up with the topic each week and, after the sermon series is over, you can always go back and do the devotianal lesson that you haven’t completed yet.
Start by asking God to help you give him your full attention. Ask him to meet with you and reveal himself more fully to you. After a quick prayer, skim over the lesson and read each question. Then go back and do the Bible reading and answer the questions, with regards to how much you can accomplish in the time you have. Do your best to save some time to actually finish the lesson with a time of prayer.
If you are new at this, don’t worry – it’s not hard and the goal is to spend time with God by listening to him speak (time in the Scriptures) and responding back to him with your thoughts in prayer.
This devotional guide is not designed for young children, but if you are the parent of younger children, I want to encourage you to lead your family in devotions on the topic of prayer. I recommend you use either the Westminster shorter catechism or the catechism for young children. (These are available on the racks on the wall opposite the women’s room.) You can use one question a week. For the first half of the week, just work on memorizing it. On the first day, read it out loud slowly 2 or 3 times. Then say the first phrase with the family repeating that phrase 5 to 10 times. By Tuesday or Wednesday, you should have the answer pretty well memorized and you can each one take a turn at saying it. Review it each day and toward the end of the week, begin to talk a little about what it means. I’d encourage you to keep it short. Finish each family devotion with prayer.
In the longest recorded prayer of our Lord Jesus, he prayed, “This is eternal life, that they may know You, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom You have sent.” (John 17:3) Jesus came to earth as a human being in order to give us eternal life and that is exactly what we have when we are reconciled to God through receiving Jesus as the one God sent.
As we begin a study on our Lord’s teaching on prayer, I have three goals:
There are three prayers in the Bible that have become central to my prayer life. I’d like to ask you to please pray these prayers in your own words for me, for yourself and for the people at South Dayton.
Ephesians 1:15-19 For this reason I too, having heard of the faith in the Lord Jesus which exists among you and your love for all the saints, do not cease giving thanks for you, while making mention of you in my prayers; that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, may give to you a spirit of wisdom and of revelation in the knowledge of Him. I pray that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened, so that you will know what is the hope of His calling, what are the riches of the glory of His inheritance in the saints, and what is the surpassing greatness of His power toward us who believe.
Ephesians 3:16-19 that He would grant you, according to the riches of His glory, to be strengthened with power through His Spirit in the inner man; so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith; and that you, being rooted and grounded in love, may be able to comprehend with all the saints what is the breadth and length and height and depth, and to know the love of Christ which surpasses knowledge, that you may be filled up to all the fullness of God.
Colossians 1:9-12 …we have not ceased to pray for you and to ask that you may be filled with the knowledge of His will in all spiritual wisdom and understanding, so that you will walk in a manner worthy of the Lord, to please Him in all respects, bearing fruit in every good work and increasing in the knowledge of God; strengthened with all power, according to His glorious might, for the attaining of all steadfastness and patience; joyously giving thanks to the Father, who has qualified us to share in the inheritance of the saints in Light.
May God answer these prayers and be glorified in our lives.
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