"Now Jesus was praying in a certain place, and when he finished, one of his disciples said to him, 'Lord, teach us to pray, as John taught his disciples.' And 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 who is indebted to us. And lead us not into temptation."'" - Luke 11:1-4
Jesus prayed a lot, including in the presence of his disciples. I wonder if there were times of awkwardness for the disciples, when Jesus was praying for long periods, and the disciples didn't know quite what to do. They came to realise prayer was foundational to Jesus' ministry. It is telling that the disciples of John the Baptist asked John to teach them to pray, and also that Jesus' disciples knew John's disciples had asked this. So prayer was a huge part not only of Jesus' ministry but also of John's. Why did they pray so much? What did they pray about?
The content of our prayers should include: (1) a recognition of the Father and his character; (2) a longing for his kingdom to come; (3) a request for daily provision; (4) a request for the forgiveness of our sins; (5) an acknowledgement we have forgiven the sins of others; and (6) a request to lead us away from temptation (vv. 2-4). We may ask God for anything that is good in his sight (vv. 9-10).
I wonder if I could be a man of prayer in such a way that others around me would ask, "Teach me to pray." First, I must learn how to pray myself, from Jesus.
Father, teach me to pray. May I set apart significant time to pray for our family, our church, our city, and our nation. All great revivals start with persistent prayer. We want to see a change in the mindsets of people toward you. So let us intercede for them. Give us what we ask, for your glory. Help us to exercise or prayer muscles like never before. - In Yeshua's name, amen.
- Jeff Coleman