APRIL 28, 2020
Identity: “I have a Father and Family.” Scripture: “Our Father in heaven, hallowed be your name.” – Matthew 6:9
I was in my 3rd course in Greek, translating the Sermon on the Mount. When I got to chapter 6, I was stunned by something I’d seen in English my whole life but for some reason it remained hidden on the surface. In Greek, it looks like this, Πάτερ ἡμῶν. Literally “Father of us.” Seeing this gripped my soul. When the disciples asked Jesus how to pray, his first word was not “GOD!” or “HOLY!” or “I” or even “SIN!” Rather, he began with the simple pronoun “Our.” Our Father.
Before I say anything in prayer, I am reminded that I am not the only child in God’s family.
I am not the only one with needs.
I am not the only one with desires.
My faith is not a privatized, individualized relationship between me and God only. I belong to a family and Our Father loves all of his children. In prayer, I am reminded of you before I can even speak of me. That is the power of “Our” in “Our Father.”
Today, as you take a moment of prayer and begin to pray, remember the saints who have enriched your life and your faith. Remember your global family with different skin colors, ethnicities, and cultures, and with gratitude and reverence, proceed from the “Our” to the tender “Father.”
“We must lay before Him what is in us, not what ought to be in us.
— C.S. Lewis, Letters to Malcolm: Chiefly on Prayer, p. 22.
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