The summer is upon us and many will be taking time from their usual routine and having a holiday. If you are able, it is a good time to stop and reflect.
For the next four weeks I invite you to spend some time with a very familiar prayer, the Lord’s Prayer. We repeat it so often that it can trip off our tongue very easily and without much thought, but here is a ‘repeat prescription’ for the next four weeks.
Spend some time reflecting on and praying with the Lord’s Prayer.
Our Father, who art in heaven,
Hallowed be thy name
Take time to think about the how God is described - Our Father - when we pray this we are acknowledging that we are part of a great family who are loved beyond measure. To hallow God’s name is to recognise his holiness. Reflect on how you approach God in prayer.
thy kingdom come;
thy will be done;
on earth as it is in heaven.
To be part of a Kingdom is to come under sovereign rule of a Monarch. To pray these words is to acknowledge that God is King and to yearn that his kingdom and will would rule in the entire world. As you pray these words think about what it means for your life.
Give us this day our daily bread.
And forgive us our trespasses,
as we forgive those who trespass against us.
Bread is a symbol of nourishment. Think about how you are nourished spiritually. Take the opportunity to be fed this week through word and sacrament. Jesus said, ‘I am the bread of life. Whoever comes to me will never be hungry, and whoever believes in me will never be thirsty.’ Pray for those who find themselves physically hungry. Donate something to a foodbank or give to a charity. Think about forgiveness. Is there someone in your life you need to forgive? Think about how wonderful it is to receive God’s forgiveness through Christ. Pray that God will help you to be a forgiving person.
And lead us not into temptation;
but deliver us from evil.
For thine is the kingdom,
the power and the glory,
for ever and ever.
Think about the things which can so easily distract us from our calling to follow Christ. Hebrews 12. 1 - 2 says,
‘Let us also lay aside every weight and the sin that clings so closely, and let us run with perseverance the race that is set before us, looking to Jesus the pioneer and perfecter of our faith.’
Spend some time thinking about the worship we offer to God. Join with the host of heaven in acknowledging his power and glory for ever and ever.
Canon Keith Farrow