Like many of you, I learned The Lord’s Prayer (Mt 6:9-13; Lk 11:2-4) as a young child and committed it to memory. I always experienced a sense of unity and peace when reciting it with others at church services, prayer meetings, and various other special assemblies.
But . . .
Surely there has to be more to prayer than this!
There was, I learned. And it totally changed how I spend my time in prayer. It also taught me how to recognize and listen to the Holy Spirit. He plays an active role in teaching me how to pray more effectively. I’ve grown from simply reciting a 30-second prayer to spending a fulfilling hour, or more, each day in prayer. Effortlessly!
I use the Lord’s Prayer as a topical outline
I also ask the Holy Spirit to remind me of some of my favorite scriptures which correspond to each of the outlined topics in The Lord’s Prayer.
The following is an example of how I might pray, pause, reflect, and meditate during my Quiet Time with God:
“Our Father which art in heaven” (Mt 6:9b) – emphasis on God as Father, His existence, and on Heaven
Father, thank you for creating me in your image (Gen 1:27). I rejoice that you are my Father and I am blessed to be your child (Jn 1:12; 2 Cor 6:18). You are, were, and will forever be (Rev 1:8) our God who sits upon the throne in heaven (Rev 7:10, 15)
“Hallowed by thy name” (Mt 6:9c) – there are many names of and meanings for God throughout the Bible
Lord, you are Jehovah Tsidkenu “The Lord Our Righteousness” (Jer 23:6), and Jehovah M’Kaddesh “The Lord Who sanctifies” (Ex 31:13). Therefore, I am free from sin and cleansed from all unrighteousness (1 Jn 1:9), and can come boldly before your throne of grace to obtain mercy and grace to help me in my times of need (Heb 4:16). I choose to live righteously before you and all men. Thank you that I am sanctified and set apart for ministry to serve you and others (Ps 4:3).
You are Jehovah Shalom “The Lord Is Peace” (Jdg 6:24), and El Elyon “The Most High God” (Gen 14:18). Thank you that your Holy Spirit is always with me. You have given me your peace so that I am not troubled or afraid (Jn 14:27). I am never alone or without your help. You are most exalted (Ps 113:4). I praise you for your extreme sovereignty, your highest preeminence, and your awesome majesty.
You are Jehovah Shammah “The Lord Is there” (Eze 48:35), and El Olam “The Everlasting God” (Gen 21:33). Even as your name is symbolic for the earthly Jerusalem which you have not abandoned, nor will you leave in ruins; neither will you abandon me or leave my life in shambles. You will restore me as you will Jerusalem. You are my living God, my eternal King (Jer 10:10). I will trust in you forever for you are my eternal Rock (Isa 26:4).
You are Jehovah Rapha “The Lord Who Heals” (Ex 15:26) and Elohim “God” (Gen 1:1). You restore my health to me and heal my wounds (Jer 30:17). You also heal my backsliding and I can return to your waiting and loving arms. You forgive and restore me (Jer 3:22). You bind up my broken heart. Thank you for proclaiming your good news to me and for freeing me when I was a captive of my own sin. You also released me as a prisoner from darkness, and have proclaimed favor over me, and have comforted me in my times of mourning; You give me a crown of beauty instead of ashes, and the oil of gladness instead of mourning, and a garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness; I will be called an oak of righteousness for the display of Your splendor (Isa 6:1-3).
You are Jehovah Jireh “The Lord Will Provide” (Gen 22:14) and El Shaddai “Lord God Almighty” (Gen 17:1). Thank you for revealing yourself to me unceasingly, especially in the area of provision. You completely nourish and satisfy me, meeting all of my needs as a mother would her child. You know my needs before I even ask (Mt 6:8). And because I am worth more than the birds of the air (Mt 10:31; Lk 12:7), you not only meet all of my needs according to your riches and glory (Phil 4:19), but you also grant me the desires of my heart (Ps 37:4). Thank you for every good and perfect gift you bestow on me (Jas 1:17). I am never in need of anything (Ps 23:1). Thank you for being my sustainer and blessing me.
You are Jehovah Nissi “The Lord My Banner” (Ex 17:15), and Jehovah Sabaoth “The Lord Of Hosts” (1 Sam 1:3). I thank you that you are a banner of encouragement to give me hope. Your banner over me is love (Song of Songs 2:4). You are the Lord of Armies (1 Sam 17:45), You have universal sovereignty over every army, both spiritual and earthly (Col 1:15; Eph 1:22). You are King of all heaven and earth (Acts 17:24-25). I am secure and victorious because you are the One who fights for me (1 Sam 17:47; Deut 3:22).
You are Jehovah Raah “The Lord My Shepherd” (Ps 23), and Adonai “Lord, Master” (Gen 15:2). You are the Lord my Shepherd who leads me and graciously provides me with all physical and spiritual necessities. You also restore me (Ps 23:1-3). Thank you for your protection, comfort, and correction (Ps 23:4). You exalt and honor me in the presence of my enemies with great abundance (Ps 23:5). Thank you for preserving me all the days of my life (Ps 23:6; 2 Tim 4:18).
“Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done in earth, as it is in heaven” (Mt 6:10) – there are many bible verses about God’s will (His desires, choices, inclinations, pleasure) for us.
Lord, I pray that your will be done in my life and in the lives of all my family members and friends. For those of them that don’t know you, I pray they will come to a knowledge of the truth, because it is your desire that all be saved (1 Tim 2:3-4). Your plans for them are that they prosper and have hope and a future (Jer 29:11). I also pray for those in my church (pastor, those in leadership, and members) that they not get weary in doing well (Gal 6:9; 2 Th 3:13). And thank you for not allowing me to forget to pray for the harvest of souls. I ask for more workers (Mt 9:37-38). I pray for our nation and leaders (city, state and national; political and spiritual leaders). I pray for all those in authority so that we may live peaceable and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness (Tim 2:1-2), because all authorities that exist have been established by you (Rom 13:1).
“Give us this day our daily bread” (Mt 6:11) – Petitioning God for all our (and others’) immediate needs (physical, spiritual, financial, and/or emotional)
Lord, I first thank you for everything you have already given to me (Take your time to name those things for which you are grateful: food, clothing, shelter, finances, good health, emotional stability, employment, etc.). I also now pray for my needs (name them), and for the needs of others (name persons and their needs. Don’t forget the homeless, the widows, and orphans).
“And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors” (Mt 6:12) – forgiving yourself and others
God thank you for forgiving me of all of my sins (take time to allow Him to show you any recent unconfessed sin. Repent and receive His forgiveness with thanksgiving.) You not only completely forgave me; you also buried my sins in the depths of the sea (Mic 7:19) and no longer remember them (Jer 31:34b; Heb 8:12; 10:17). They are as far as the east is from the west (Ps 103:12). I not only receive your forgiveness, but I also forgive myself and walk in newness of life as a new creation (2 Cor 5:17). I also choose to forgive and release those who have sinned against me, because your forgiveness extends to them as well, and it is required of me to forgive others (Mt 5:23-25; Mt 6:14; Mt 18:35). I choose to walk in forgiveness towards others every day.
“And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil” (Mt 6:13a) – petitioning God for protection
Mighty God, thank you for not leading me into temptation nor allowing me to be tempted above what I am able to bear. You always provide me a way of escape when I am tempted (1 Cor 10:13). I put on the whole of armor of God (Eph 6:10-18), and stand. You are my refuge and my fortress. You are my shelter and I trust you to protect me at all times (Ps 91:1-2). Because I love you, you will rescue me. (Ps 91:14). When I call out to you for help, you will answer me. You are with me and help me in times of trouble. Thank you for delivering me (Ps 91:15) (Also, pray for the protection of whomever the Holy Spirit brings to your mind; our policemen, firemen, soldiers, missionaries, the homeless, the weak, etc.).
“For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, for ever. Amen.” (Mt 6:13b) – Close your prayer time in praise and worship by proclaiming God’s truths regarding His eternal kingdom, His eternal power, and his eternal glory.
Praise you, Lord God! Your kingdom is an everlasting kingdom, and your dominion endures throughout all generations (Ps 145:13). You are worthy, our Lord and God, to receive glory and honor and power, for you created all things; by your will they exist, and came to be (Rev 4:11). Your eternal power and divine nature have been clearly seen since the creation of the world from all you have created (Rom 1:20). You are the God of heaven, the great and awesome God (Neh 1:5; Dan 9:4; Deut 7:21) who has performed great and awesome deeds and wonders (Deut 10:21; Ps 66:5; Ps 65:5; Ps 66:3). I love you with all my heart, soul, strength, and mind (Lk 10:27), and worship you in spirit and in truth (Jn 4:24).
PRAYER: Lord, Jesus, thank you for teaching me how to have deeper communion with you through prayer. Amen.