3. Open your heart to praise the Lord
I will praise the , who counsels me;
Bishop N.T. Wright says :
Jesus wants us to be so eager to love and please God that we will do everything we should do for his eyes alone.
N.T. Wright. Matthew for Everyone, Part 1. Louisville,KY:Westminster John Knox Press, 2004, p.55.
If you give, pray and fast for catching other people's attention so that they praise how good you are, or to prove how faithful you are, it would be useless. Offering money to God (your tithing), giving money to the poor, praying, and fasting are all deeply rooted in a true and faithful relationship with Jesus. If you have that intimate relationship with Jesus, then you will have a new way of giving to Jesus and being with Jesus. For His eyes only.
Jesus' prayer (The Lord's Prayer) is to point us to this intimate relationship. It is not about getting what you want but giving your heart to God and trusting that He is going to provide you with what you need, and not what you want. The Lord's prayer is our plea for the Kingdom of God to become a reality. It is to have heaven break out on earth so that we can experience the real presence of God and the glory of heaven. It is prayer that reflects our intimate relationship with our Heavenly Father; it is not prayer for showing off our eloquent words to others. It is being with God and for God's eyes only.
Lead us to be able to establish a true intimate relationship with you so that we can have a better relationship with our family members and friends that they can see you in us. In Jesus name we pray. Amen.
1. In your family, how do you pray together? If you have this practice, how can you continue to go deeper in prayer? If you don't have this practice, how can you begin praying together?