Wednesday, February 8, 2017

February 9, 2017

"Give us this day our daily bread......." Matthew 6:11

You are created for God’s pleasure! He made you to be the object of His love and grace! God desires to be known by you and to know you. One way that happens is through prayer.

Therefore, prayer is not a ritual or a religious exercise but a relationship with the Heavenly Father! Like all good Fathers, God delights in providing for His children.

I was blessed by the thought that God desires to relate to us in the “NOW”. Relationships happen in the moment and you must capture those moments to know and be known by God or by your loved ones.

Last night I saw this truth demonstrated in a powerful way in the recent movie “Courageous”. I recommend this movie for everyone but particularly for dads.

The men in this movie, like many of you, were busy making a living and providing for their families and in that process became easily distracted from the very family members they wanted to protect and provide for. So, like you, when they actually came home to be with their families they were physically present but emotionally absent. Like many of you they struggled with switching that mental switch that takes you from “THEN” to “NOW”. A God-given desire to provide and protect your wife and your children and the drive it takes to do that can be the very thing that prevents you from providing them with the emotional connection they desperately crave. Not many things are lonelier than living around the people you love but not giving or receiving that love.

Often it takes something dramatic happening to shock you into the importance of being “THERE’ when you are there. You and I need to be emotionally engaged in the “NOW” with wives and children. Otherwise, you wake up one day to discover you are living with strangers.

What does this have to do with the Lord’s Prayer?

Jesus teaches His disciples – and you – that you should pray for God to help you know Him and trust Him on a daily basis. He is helping them understand the importance of relating to God in the “NOW”. Relationships happen moment by moment. If you miss those moments you miss out on relationship. All relationships.

As in the movie and in your world, what keeps you from enjoying the “NOW” are the pains of the past, the pressures of the day as well as your plans for the future. When you are distracted by your past regrets or future concerns or the demands of the present, it keeps you from enjoying the “NOW”. Life happens in the “NOW”. Love happens in the “NOW”. All of us have missed moments we would love to have back!

One of the truths the Master wants you to get from this teaching on prayer is how to live in the “NOW” by trusting Him for the day and the days to come. One of the messages of “Courageous” is how to seize the moments with your family that shape lives and build love.

Pray the prayer. See the movie. Learn to live in the “NOW”. Start now.