ICE BREAKER: Would you rather HAVE to sleep in your car once a week or HAVE to walk to work once a week?
This week we continued to build a Framework for Proper Prioritization. We learned from the Model Prayer that there is a critical step before deciding priorities.
One day the disciples asked Jesus to "teach them how to pray." What Jesus said next, we know as the "Lord's Prayer" or the "Our Father." However, it is more accurately called the MODEL prayer because it was intended to give us a template for our own personal prayers.
The prayer breaks down into 2 major sections with 3 parts each. The first section is about PERSPECTIVE!
Our Father in heaven,
hallowed be your name,
your kingdom come,
your will be done,
on earth as it is in heaven.
This teaches us the first critical step that proceeds prioritization:
Until You have Proper PERSPECTIVE
You will not have Proper PRIORITIES
If you can not see things accurately, you can not prioritize things accurately. Prayer brings the kind of perspective that we desperately need. It reminds us how BIG God is and how much He loves us!
Do you ever find yourself going hours, days, or even weeks without thinking about how God is in control? (It's surprisingly easy to do!)
The first section of the Model Prayer shows us the PERSON we are praying to, His POSITION in the universe, and His PURPOSE for our life. Only with those things in mind can we start to put our life in order, make decisions, or navigate relationships.
The second half of the Model Prayer moves into prioritization.
Give us today our daily bread.
And forgive us our debts, as we also have forgiven our debtors.
And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from the evil one.’
This addresses the same 3 things we have talked about all series - THINGS, PEOPLE, and PLACES.
The prayer asks for the needs of that day, trusting (because you have the proper perspective) that God WILL take care of tomorrow.
In our relationships, it shows the principle of reciprocity. If we want forgiveness, it is only just that we give forgiveness - Of course, we have sinned against God FAR more than anyone could ever sin against us. If we want peace, we must be peacemakers. If we want loyalty, we must not betray others.
Last, is the reminder that we MUST be intentional about the places and spaces we put ourselves in. Avoid temptation and run from the seductions of the world. These are the distractions we are desperate to minimize in our life!
Prayer is not a science. There isn't a magical formula that makes God grant all your wishes. Prayer is not to get God on your side or your agenda. The Model Prayer shows us that prayer is about pursuing proper Perspective and asking God to give us wisdom, in light of that perspective, to Properly Prioritize our life!
What is ONE WAY you will put the Model Prayer to use in your life this week?
This week, each team member take a turn practicing using the Model prayer. You can look at the two sections above our view it in the Bible in Matthew chapter 6. Remember, there isn't a WRONG way to pray. Acknowledge WHO, WHERE, and WHAT God is and then ask for help in the priorities you struggle with.