Jesus said, ‘Pray then in this way: 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 do not bring us to the time of trial, but rescue us from the evil one.
Combined Reflection & Prayer
When we pray “Our Father in heaven”, we sense God in busyness, creativity, workplace frustrations, laughter and tears, conflict and peace-making, the beauty of the sunrise and sunset, and ask God to open our eyes to glimpses of heaven.
When we pray, “Hallowed be your name”, God calls us to worship, to sing and dance, to shout and proclaim, and to give praise to his name.
When we pray, “Your kingdom come”, God calls us to be his servants, his love in the world, furthering his Kingdom, and we ask God to show us how to serve.
When we pray, “Your will be done”, we ask each time, what is God’s will for his people, his world, for me? We listen for God’s voice, showing us the path to follow.
When we pray, “On earth as in heaven”, we’re asking to live God’s will in small everyday acts, and in the ways we respond to God’s call.
When we pray, “Give us this day our daily bread”, we remember that God provides for our needs, our food and shelter; that God gives us strength, wisdom and knowledge so we may share his gospel, so that we may live and work his good news.
When we pray, “Forgive us our sins as we forgive those who sin against us”, we ask God to forgive us for those perplexing times, when we doubt God’s wisdom or love; for holding back when we should step forward; for remaining silent when we should speak. We ask God to forgive those who hurt, doubt, or overlook us.
When we pray, “Lead us not into temptation”, we ask God to help us not to be tempted to separate action from prayer, nor prayer from action; not to give way to complacency, undue fear, arrogance, nor timidity. We ask God to grant us patience to test our sense of calling with humility and the wisdom of others.
When we pray, “But deliver us from evil”, we ask God to help us to keep to the path that leads to him, and to avoid patterns of living that keep us from him.
When we pray, “For yours is the kingdom, the power and the glory, for ever and ever”, we are trying to serve God, to partake in the growth of his kingdom.
When we pray “Amen”, we’re asking that it may be so in our lives.
The Rev’d Michael Hopkins is Minister of the Spire Church, Farnham, Elstead URC, and serves as Clerk of the General Assembly.