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Sunday, March 16, 2014

Praying with God

“Lord, great and awesome God, you who keep your merciful covenant toward those who love you...We have sinned, been wicked and done evil;...But yours, O Lord, our God, are compassion and forgiveness!"

The book of Daniel reminds how we ought to pray. When we begin by acknowledging God's greatness, admit our sin and rely on God's mercy, we are praying in a form that is both natural and honest. Throughout the bible, God hears prayers like this and responds.

From Proverbs 3:6, "In all your ways, submit to him, and he will make your paths straight," to the Book of Revelation, "Thou art worthy, O Lord, to receive glory and honor and power: for thou hast created all things, and for thy pleasure they are and were created," to the Our Father, we find examples of prayer that allow us to enter the presence of God honestly, openly and without fear.

Jesus is clear when his disciples ask him how to pray. Say "Our Father,...hallowed be the name, ....forgive us our trespasses," and believe that God will hear you. Because God yearns to to respond to us, to be near us, to guide us and challenge us, we need not be afraid, but there is little wiggle room in Jesus' prayer. When we have the humility to kneel in awe and wonder and to submit ourselves to God's will, only good can happen. When, on the other hand, we hedge and try to direct our own lives, we stumble over our pride and arrogance, and make it impossible for God to help us. 

Proverbs, the Prophets and Jesus are clear. When we praise God's goodness and trust in God's mercy, our prayer will rise like incense before the all loving God.

Today, make no excuses for your sins and trust God to heal you.

How do you pray?

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