Tuesday, March 9, 2010

When you pray, pray like this

Robert Spencer, on praying with the emphasis where Jesus put it [Matthew 6:7-13]:
.... There are ten lines in this little poem-like prayer. The first five embody a longing for the Kingdom of God. That's what the whole first half of the prayer is about. Only then does the prayer turn to immediate personal needs of the one doing the praying, and I would add they are as much spiritual needs as temporal.

Note: the prayer is not an encouragement to self-absorption. It is not a litany of personal needs. More importantly, it puts first things first. The need above all other needs, the supreme subject of prayer, we might say, is the Kingdom. "Your kingdom come." The personal prayer requests (such as "daily bread," which is a far cry, by the way, from praying for prosperity) come after, and within the kingdom context.

I learn to understand my real need, when I see this prayer aright. .... [more]
Wilderness Fandango: On putting the kingdom first