Whichever version of the Lord’s Prayer we pray (the topic of my last post), the words can become a string of sounds without meaning. One helpful way to truly pray the prayer is to slow it down, to breathe each phrase or petition and pause to reflect upon it for a moment. For example: God is our Father, our Papa, our Dad, and like a good father God wants to spend time with us, to be in relationship. May this time of prayer be such a time of holy conversation. Slowing down the Lord’s Prayer allows it to become a form of meditation rather than recitation. To quickly rattle off the words of the prayer rarely becomes true prayer.
Another way to pray the prayer is to use other biblical translations of the prayer. With the plethora of Bible translations one can find unique wordings that can reawaken Jesus’ prayer for us. For example, Eugene Peterson’s The Message translates Matthew 6:9-13 as following:
With a God like this loving you, you can pray very simply. Like this:
Our Father in heaven, Reveal who you are.
Set the world right; Do what’s best – as above, so below.
Keep us alive with three square meals.
Keep us forgiven with you and forgiving others.
Keep us safe from ourselves and the Devil.
You’re in charge! You can do anything you want!
You’re ablaze in beauty! Yes. Yes. Yes.
Or you might try writing your own version of the Lord’s Prayer. A thoughtful personal translation can help you rediscover the beauty and wonder of Jesus’ simple prayer. Here is my recent attempt.
Papa who rules the cosmos,
let Your honor be our vision.
Bring Your desires and justice to our world,
So that heaven can be seen here.
Provides us with sufficient food for today.
Teach us to forgive with the same passion that You forgive us.
Protect us from the evil within and without.
And let us never forget that You are our Glorious King.
Lord Jesus, continue to imprint your words on our hearts and lives