NEW TESTAMENT PRAYERS
We are so glad you are joining us for these daily prayer posts. Over the next few weeks we are going to listen to the prayers we find in the Bible, and some of God’s most faithful saints and servants. Through their prayers, we will learn better how to pray and connect with our heavenly Father.
Each devotion will take less than ten minutes of your time.
- We will look at an insight from those who know something important about prayer.
- We will listen to the prayers of people in the Bible—people just like us. And to people who gained a deep measure of spiritual intimacy with God because they prayed.
- We will reflect, asking the same four questions each day that invites us to look and listen with intent.
- And we will pray, for it is in praying that we learn to pray. And it is in praying that the Spirit changes our hearts.
We want to encourage you to grab a journal or a notebook – something to write on as you walk through each prayer guide. Yes, it will add a few minutes to the time it takes to do the devotion, and it will also deepen your experience and shape your walk with God for years to come. This journal or notebook will be a keepsake to remind you of God’s faithfulness during this challenging season for all of us.
“Disturb us, Lord, when with the abundance of things we possess, we have lost our thirst for the waters of life; having fallen in love with life, we have ceased to dream of eternity, and in our efforts to build a new earth, we have allowed our vision of the new heaven to dim.”
– Attributed to Sir Francis Drake, 1587.
You may have a version of the Lord’s Prayer memorized already. Today, really re-read it. Soak it up. As Jesus taught what is known as the Sermon on the Mount (recorded by Matthew in chapters 5, 6 and 7) Christ provided practical applications for His listeners to meet their (our!) needs. Our brains are wired to need routine for health–prayer and meditation on what is holy, for example–and Jesus knew His disciples and followers throughout the ages would benefit from a template for praying without fancy affectations and to cleanse their minds. So He preached:
“And when you pray, do not heap up empty phrases as the Gentiles do, for they think that they will be heard for their many words. 8 Do not be like them, for your Father knows what you need before you ask him. 9 Pray then like this:
“Our Father in heaven,
hallowed be your name.
10 Your kingdom come,
your will be done,
on earth as it is in heaven.
11 Give us this day our daily bread,
12 and forgive us our debts,
as we also have forgiven our debtors.
13 And lead us not into temptation,
but deliver us from evil.
14 For if you forgive others their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you, 15 but if you do not forgive others their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses.
1. Having read the Word, sit silently for a minute and give God’s Word a moment to settle within you.
2. Re-read the verses slowly and write down some thoughts that resonate with you.
3. Ask the Holy Spirit to help you reflect on how to apply this template from the Lord to your own prayer life. (For example: you might write down, “Jesus’s prayer asks for forgiveness as we have forgiven. Where might I need to forgive those who’ve wronged me? Where am I being led to temptations that I have control to stop or need the strength to overcome?“) The Spirit can help you understand what God is saying to you in these moments.
4. Ask the Holy Spirit to quiet your thoughts and your worries about tomorrow so you can focus on today’s worship of the Father and furthering His will to be done today in this moment through your prayer and accompanying discernment. Listen for His answers in the closeness and quiet of your prayer life and act as you’re prompted by the Holy Spirit.
Father, thank you for Jesus and His teachings that give me all the instruction I need for this day and all days. I praise your holy name and wisdom. I thirst to know your will and how I may help those around me to know and abide in your son for your holy purposes. Thank you for blessing me daily and for forgiving me for those times I have not put you first. I praise you for the Holy Spirit who accompanies me, your beloved child, and I ask you to prompt me toward forgiveness of others. Help me learn to forgive as you have forgiven; help me to let go of anger; help me to love others with the deep agape love you have commanded and built me to demonstrate to my neighbors. I pray you prompt me to avoid all temptations, to give me strength, and to help me instruct others out of love so that your will, not my own, will be done here. Help me to think on what is excellent and pure and holy. I look forward to Jesus’s triumphant return and I thank you for your perfect plan in loving us so that we may love others and lead them to salvation in Jesus. Amen.
These devotionals are adapted from various sources, including The Holy Bible, The Book of Common Prayer, Fenelon: The Seeking Heart, Fellowship Bible Church Nashville, Handbook to Prayer by Kenneth Boa and others.