Teenside Daily Devotional

Read Matthew 6:5-15.

Prayer is something that has always been difficult for me. It’s not my first thought in any given situation when it probably should be the first thing I do. I don’t always know exactly what to say. I don’t always feel like I’m heard. I don’t even always feel comfortable when praying. But this is how we communicate with our God. And just like everything else that we learn in life, it’s a discipline. It takes time and practice. This is why Jesus sought to instruct on how to pray. He knew its importance. We should know it as well.

As Jesus has done previously, he likes to lead with some non-examples. There were apparently people praying in public places, even places where you’d be expected to pray, yet they did so with the wrong intentions. Just like with giving, people love to be seen. But prayer is not about being seen. It’s about connecting with our Creator! It’s also not about the amount of words or elegance with which you pray. If God knows what you need before you even ask, then don’t waste time trying to impress Him with words. He just wants you to talk to Him!

When it comes to the Lord’s Prayer itself, there are so many things you could look at and break down. I’ve been a part of many classes going through each line of the prayer. It is awesome! However, rather than tell you the things that I’ve learned from it, I encourage you to pray it for yourself and see what happens! I hadn’t really heard it much growing up, and I always felt uncomfortable when I was surrounded by a lot of people reciting it since I didn’t know it. But a year and a half ago, I committed it to memory. I prayed it consistently every morning for about six months because John Nichols said it had changed his life. And you know what? It changed mine too.

This is not simply the power of these specific words. This is the power of prayer! Jesus has merely presented us with a template. He expects our personality, our creativity, and our needs to mold this prayer into something we can use to speak with our God. God did not create us all the same way, so all of our prayers will look different. He just wants you to pray. So pray! Enjoy dialogue with your Father in heaven, and grow closer to Him because of it!

*Take a moment to journal these questions. Write down your thoughts, questions, and concerns. Then date your entry. One of the coolest things is being able to look back and see how God came through for you.*

  1. Jesus is trying to cultivate a different way to view prayer. This new way heavily contradicted the context in which the people were used to viewing prayer. They were used to glamourous phrases, said in public, to be heard by a distant God. This may be your experience with prayer too. But Jesus explains that it is so much more personal than that. Our words don’t have to be eloquently stated, they just need to be real and from the heart. Which context have you seen prayer modeled for you? How can Jesus’ idea of prayer change our perspective of what it should be?

  1. Read over the Lord’s prayer. (Verses 9-13). What part stands out to you right now? Why?

  1. What things have been on your heart recently? How can you give them to God in prayer so that He can meet you where you are? How can you align your words/thoughts with His Word so that “[His] kingdom come, [and His] will be done”? 

Prayer: Spend some time praying about the things you journaled. Then, take a minute to pray the Lord’s prayer. After each line, take a moment to pause and meditate on the words you said.

“Our Father in heaven,
hallowed be your name.
Your kingdom come,
your will be done,
on earth as it is in heaven.
Give us this day our daily bread,
and forgive us our debts,
as we also have forgiven our debtors
And lead us not into temptation,
but deliver us from evil.”

Hear Us from Heaven- Jared Anderson

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