Lord Teach Us to Pray, Part 8

Luke 11:1-13

We conclude what became an eight-part series on Jesus’ lessons on prayer from Luke 11 with Jesus’ assurances of God’s goodness in responding to our prayers. Jesus gives two basic illustrations to make this point.

Continue reading

Lord Teach Us to Pray, Part 6 (Luke 11:1-13)

Luke 11:1-13

In 2006, a man entered a single-room Amish school house and violently murdered 5 young girls. One can hardly imagine the heartache felt by this Amish community after the tragedy. Yet, when news media outlets reported the story, the response of the community outshined the gruesome act itself. Without missing a beat, the community choose to forgive the murderer and even reached out to his family in sympathy instead of understandably demanding that he pay for his crime.

Continue reading

Lord Teach Us to Pray, Part 5

Luke 11:1-13

My grandparents used to have a woodcut picture in their kitchen based on a famous scene of two peasants in a field. In the background, a church bell rang to mark the end of the day. In the foreground, a small basket of potatoes laid on the ground. The two peasants hovered over it, with heads bowed, thanking God for the fruits of their labor. Though it was small, it was enough. They thanked God for enough.

Continue reading

Lord Teach Us to Pray, Part 4 (Luke 11:1-13)

Luke 11:1-13

Last week we looked at the first petition in Jesus’s pattern for prayer, “hallowed be your name.” This week we look at the second petition, “your kingdom come.”

We all desire a world where justice rolls down like water, where sickness and death ceases, where God rules the nations and the nations rule as God would have them rule, and where we behold the face of our Father in Heaven with unveiled faces. Many of us have given up on such a world. We have become too content with moldy bread, when a feast awaits us. God’s Word assures us such a day will come.

Continue reading

Lord Teach Us to Pray, Part 2 (Luke 11:1-13)

Luke 11:1-13

Jesus responded to his disciples request to teach them to pray by giving them a pattern for prayer (Luke 11:2-4). You may have noticed that the words Jesus gave his disciples in the Gospel of Luke differ from those in the more familiar version found in Matthew 6:9-13. Jesus likely gave his disciples this prayer many times. The words themselves are not as important as the pattern. This reminds us that God does not need our repetitive words. He wants to hear us speaking to him from the heart.  

Continue reading

Lord, Teach Us to Pray (Luke 11:1-13), Part 1

Luke 11:1-13

The mid-nineteenth century missionary to South Africa Andrew Murray once said of prayer: “The disciples had been with Christ and seen him pray. They had learned to understand something of the connection between His wondrous life in public and His secret life of prayer. They had learned to believe in Him as a Master in the art of prayer – none could pray like Him. And so they came to Him with the request, ‘Lord, teach us to pray.’ And in after years they would have told us that there were few things more wondrous or blessed that He taught them than His lessons on prayer.”

Continue reading

The Wilderness is not Home (Numbers 11)

Numbers 11

They forgot the wilderness was not their home. About a year earlier, the Lord God rescued Israel from slavery in Egypt. For a year he sustained them before Mount Sinai, providing them with what they needed to survive. The journey had been difficult since leaving Egypt. They left in a rush, with little time to pack. They were chased by Pharaoh’s army. Now the journey was starting to get too long and too arduous.

Continue reading

We all worship (Psalm 95:6)

Psalm 95:6

Every molecule, subterranean mole, and mote of dust dancing on a sunbeam, God created. Every celestial galaxy, God made. The breath that you take as you read these words would not be possible, unless God made it so.

Continue reading

Generosity in times of scarcity (2 Corinthians 8:1-5)

2 Corinthians 8:1-5

Imagine you were in prison in your twenties. Nothing you did put you there. Your hometown was sacked by a foreign army. You were rounded up with other young men and placed in a prison, waiting for them to ship you off and force you to fight in the very army that imprisoned you. To make matters worse a famine strikes the land. Destined to die by starvation or by sword, a bright light shines into the darkness. Under the veil of night, food appears through the prison bars. You and your friends gobble it up.

Continue reading