November 10, 2011

Prayer Pleasing [Part 2]

Photo c/o:  Harmless Monster

It's funny because when I was thinking and praying about what to write, all I could think of was the musical version of "The Lord's Prayer". I've been humming it for half of the evening!
Today, I'll share two versions of the prayer. I'll start with the King James Version and end with the Message Version.

"Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come, Thy will be done in earth, as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread.  And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil: For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory for ever. Amen."

"Our Father in heaven, Reveal who you are. Set the world right; Do what's best -- as above, so below. Keep us alive with three square meals. Keep us forgiven with you and forgiving others. Keep us safe from ourselves and the Devil. You're in charge! You can do anything you want! You're ablaze in beauty! Yes. Yes. Yes."

* * * 

Now, I must admit that I was a little thrown off by some of the language in the Message. Since when did daily bread turn into three square meals?  In some places, their daily bread is one really great meal...or maybe not so great. Although the language was a tad bit off (at times) for me yet I still appreciate the message. I think of the original King James Version and I'm in awe of how good God is. I'm looking at the prayer totally differently right now. 
For some reason, it's just now hitting me that this prayer is a great summation of  how we should live our lives in relation to God. 

"Our Father"- God wants us to look at Him as "daddy". Whether there is a strong male figure in your life or not, there's is one who is the ultimate father, waiting to love you, spoil you, listen to you, and take good care of you if you let Him. 

"which art in Heaven, hallowed be thy name"- Our dad is in that place that I can only DREAM of and still can't fathom. Anytime we describe something as heavenly, we mean sheer pleasure, pure decadence, amazingness beyond our wildest imagination up to this point. Imagine that we can talk to someone everyday who actually lives there. Hallowed essentially means holy. This reminds me that even though he brought himself down to our level to live life and face the same temptations that we face, let's not forget that He is sooo much more than just a man. He's really a holy God. Respect and honor Him for what He's done in your life. 

"Thy kingdom come, Thy will be done in earth, as it is in heaven"- Honestly, when I read this, my mind goes straight to the idea that if we just surrender to His will, we don't have to worry about anything. His will. Cast all your cares upon Him and let Him know up front that you're surrendering and giving Him full control. 

"Give us this day our daily bread"- I understand that since there's bread involved in this text, one would automatically think of something edible. I also believe that the daily bread could include the fact that we have jobs, cars to drive, breath in our body to move, breathe, and take of ourselves and one another. When you return a faithful tithe & offering, you're giving it back. So, God has to first give these things to you in order for you to return it. Catch my drift? 

"And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors"- It's so easy to ask God to forgive us but when it comes to forgiving others, God knows that's a stumbling block for a lot of people. Grudges kill. Holding onto anger takes so much energy. I remember hearing someone say that they regretted suing another person because it literally drained them of their own energy since they had to stay in that angry, bitter, unforgiving, vengeful state for such a long time to continue the lawsuit. Sometimes, it's just better to forgive, let things go, and pray to God for healing. 

"And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil"- Imagine if every human being on this Earth prayed this one line. Imagine if all the politicians prayed this one line. What if every church member was on one accord and prayed this prayer? This isn't to say that the temptation wouldn't come. However, we need to have on the whole armor of God and know that God is in front of us delivering us from every attack of the enemy. It's not easy. It takes a disciplined and strong mind to rise above temptation but Jesus walked this earth and sinned not. It is possible to triumph over temptation. 

"For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, for ever"- Saying this line to God reaffirms in our minds how perfect God is and how much we surrender to Him. The kingdom, power, glory- it all belongs to God. Understanding that shift in power helps us to move in such a way that acknowledges that it's not our battle to win. We are free to be victorious because His will WILL be done. 

So be it. 

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