One day Jesus was praying in a certain place. When he finished, one of his disciples said to him, “Lord, teach us to pray, just as John taught his disciples.” He said to them, “When you pray, say: “‘Father, hallowed be your name, your kingdom come. Give us each day our daily bread. Forgive us our sins, for we also forgive everyone who sins against us. And lead us not into temptation.’” Then he said to them, “Suppose one of you has a friend, and he goes to him at midnight and says, ‘Friend, lend me three loaves of bread; because a friend of mine on a journey has come to me, and I have nothing to set before him.’ Then the one inside answers, ‘Don’t bother me. The door is already locked, and my children are with me in bed. I can’t get up and give you anything.’ I tell you, though he will not get up and give him the bread because he is his friend, yet because of the man’s persistence he will get up and give him as much as he needs. “So I say to you: Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives; he who seeks finds; and to him who knocks, the door will be opened. “Which of you fathers, if your son asks for a fish, will give him a snake instead? Or if he asks for an egg, will give him a scorpion? If you then, though you are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in heaven give the Holy Spirit to those who ask him!”
Pray With Confidence
There is no magic word for praying successfully to God.
He’s not like a bureaucrat who denies your request because you filled out one line of the form incorrectly. He’s not looking for the exact wording or an exact number of prayers for you to offer in order to get him to say yes.
Jesus has given us words to pray when we don’t know what else to say. He has explained to us that God looks for persistence when we pray. He has promised us that he will answer our prayers. He has opened the door to heaven for us by his perfect life, his innocent death, and his glorious resurrection. We can approach the throne of grace with confidence.
So pray and pray often!
(Christian Worship: A Lutheran Hymnal – 412):
Lord, teach us how to pray aright, with reverence and with fear.
Though dust and ashes in your sight, we may, we must draw near. Amen.
This devotion was selected from the Daily Devotion archive.