In the entire New Testament, Jesus taught His disciples only one prayer; some today refer to it as the Lord’s Prayer. Though many of us recite it from memory in services or on occasions where various denominations gather, how often do we really think about its significance or expect this prayer to actually be answered? Let’s look at it for a moment and think about praying it as if you were melding with the words of the prayer and, more importantly, with Jehovah to see His will accomplished on the earth:
Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come, Thy will be done in earth, as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread. And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil: For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, for ever. Amen. — Matthew 6:9-13
Author Jan Karon wrote a series of books about a vicar in the fictional village of Mitford. The main character was often heard to pray what he called “the prayer that never fails.” During her various books about the pastor and his congregation, we learn that prayer was, “Thy will be done.” Author, pastor, and theologian Dr. Charles Swindoll wrote: “Prayer was never intended to make us feel guilty. It was never intended as a verbal marathon for only the initiated. Real prayer—the kind of prayer that Jesus mentioned and modeled—is realistic, spontaneous, down-to-earth communication with the living Lord that results in a relief of personal anxiety and a calm assurance that our God is in full control of our circumstances.”
Jesus told us we should pray that His kingdom be ushered in on earth as in heaven. This is what the earthly Church is meant to do—shepherd His kingdom. How can we possibly do this if we truly do not know Him or are not one with Him?
Looking back on my life, I see clearly that those times when Jesus has moved the most powerfully were when I leaned the most heavily upon Him. Whenever He has moved mightily was when “I” moved out. Jesus would show up and softly speak, and when I obeyed, I would see His will done on the earth as if we were actually standing before His throne in heaven. This is receiving the kingdom of God like a child. It is through those who have spent time with Jesus, who commune with Him through prayer and reading the Word, who obey His voice, that His kingdom becomes real on earth.