Personal Conversation – Sermon Summary   Leave a comment

Luke 5:15-16.  Real Followers series, pt.4

Believers in Jesus Christ have direct access to the Lord through prayer.  This connection is essential for a vital relationship with God.

Prayer to the soul is much like food to the body.  Our bodies gain energy when they are fed.  The energy lasts for a period of time and then more food is required.  I believe that prayer is the spiritual equivalent.

One aspect of today’s passage is that Jesus sought out “lonely places” for prayer.  When we hear the word lonely, we have a sense of emptiness, absence, even neglect.  Yet what we find as Christians in our “quiet time” should be the polar opposite.  It is here that we find God.  It is here that we experience our primary spiritual feeding time.  There is no loneliness when we are connected with the Lord.

To me, it is far more important THAT you pray than WHAT you pray.  Let’s look together at Matthew 6:5-13.

To me, the most important part of this passage is the first phrase in each of verses 5, 6, and 7.  “And when you pray…” is a vital statement that shows the understanding that you WILL pray.  It doesn’t say “if” with any other forms of disclaimers.  Prayer is to be a regular part of the Real Follower’s life.

In the model, or Lord’s Prayer, we see the recognition of our place before God and His place before us as Lord.  We recognize the importance of asking for His will to be done because as long as there exists those not being perfectly obedient, His will is not being done.  We seek provisions for our everyday needs and not wants. 

We also find that forgiveness is necessary in two ways: we must offer it to others if we expect to receive it from the Lord.  Hence verses 14-15.

Finally, we ask that God not lead us into temptation.  It is important to know that God does test us but never tempts us.  James 1:13-14 make that perfectly clear.  Temptation is designed to draw us away from our faith while testing is designed to strengthen our faith.  God has no intention of leading us away from Himself.

The commonly used last phrase of the Lord’s Prayer is not in the earlier manuscripts that we have today.  This does not make our previous understandings incorrect; it just updates what we have.  Believe me, like so many other students of God’s word I would give anything if we had the original manuscripts so that we would have a completely accurate account of the original words written. 

I memorized the KJV of the Lord’s Prayer along with everybody else in early childhood.  I’m glad I did.  I feel that this is a formula for prayer.  In my mind, it is important that we learn prayermore than we learn a prayer.  Again, I feel that it is more important that we pray than what we pray.  In no way is this to be understood that I am against the teaching, memorizing or reciting of the KJV Lord’s Prayer.  I still believe that this should be done from time to time.

I hope that you are not one who neglects prayer.  If you look closely at your life right now, I wonder if there is anything going on that you need to be taking to the Lord in prayer.  What is it that you need?  Are you struggling with unconfessed sin, worries over finances, family struggles, courage, or maybe just need a friend?

God is real and can make a real difference in your life if you’d only have a personal conversation with Him.

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