THE OUR FATHER PRAYER
Meditating on the Our Father Prayer helps us to be fully aware of the blessings that He has for us. Jesus taught his disciples to pray to the Father (Matt 6:9)
Our Father who art in Heaven
We are praying to God without using the word “God”.
We refer to Him as our “Father”.
We are acknowledging Him as the One who created us.
And that He resides in Heaven.
He is different from our earthly father.
Our Heavenly Father is the Father of all of us.
We are all God’s children and brothers and sisters to one another.
Hallowed be thy Name
When we say “Hallowed be Thy name”, we are expressing a desire for God’s mission of Father (with all the meaning imbued in this name) to be respected and spoken with reverence.
“Holy, Holy, God, Lord God of Hosts, Heaven and earth are full of your glory.”
Your Kingdom Come
The Kingdom of God in Heaven means all the Heavenly Court of Angels and Saints praying to God the Father for us and for our intentions.
Once we allow God to reign in our hearts while we are here on earth, His blessings flow to us and through us to the ones we choose to pray for.
The riches of His Kingship are expressed through the many different titles of His Name, such as King of the Universe, King of Glory, King of Justice and Peace etc.
When we desire and pray for everyone to be saved and to be brought to the knowledge of the truth His Kingship and Kingdom will come.
“Let Your splendour radiate, and reign over us, for we are waiting for Your Kingdom to come …”
Your Will be done on Earth as it is in Heaven
God desires that all men be saved and brought to the knowledge of the truth. This can only happen when we surrender our will to follow the will of God.
Our Father is a God of goodness and only wants the best for us.
But His will for us is not the same as our human will or desires.
“May this be your will, Lord … to guide my/our steps according to Your Law … and to help me/us to obey Your Commandments … to Love God and our neighbour as we love ours elves.”
Give us this day our Daily Bread
We ask God our Father to bless us so we can provide for ourselves and to share with others our basic needs (food, shelter, education, employment etc.).
This bread is also the grace of meeting others and being attentive to their insights which may help us to grow.
God our Father takes care of us by giving us the bread we need for living (the spiritual nourishment of a Christian community, the teaching of the faith, scripture, the sacramental life of the Church) and an openness to share this life giving bread with others.
The Father as our primary parent feeds us as His lambs and sheep through love and cares for us through our parents and His pastors.
Forgive us our trespasses as we forgive those who trespass against us
God forgives us when we say we are sorry for what we have done. It’s not easy, but we can always ask Him to forgive us.
When we ask God our Father to be forgiven there is one condition; that we too forgive with the grace of God those who have hurt us or made us suffer.
Questions I might ask:
If I can’t forgive how can I do this and does that mean I can’t pray the Our Father Prayer?
How can I learn to forgive and can everything be forgiven?
Sometimes it is humanly impossible to forgive. With Jesus I can ask the Father for the gift to forgive those who have hurt me and then forgive them with the forgiveness of Jesus.
In Jesus Name I choose to forgive (name person/persons (that person may be you)).
With a decision of the will I can decide to forgive with the grace of God even if I don’t feel like it.
O my God I am very sorry that I have sinned against You and my brothers and sisters. You are so good and full of love for me. You gave your life for the forgiveness of our sins on the Cross. Help me to be sorry for my sins and to try not to sin again. Amen.
Our Father, forgive us for we have sinned …
And lead us not into Temptation
God does not lead us into temptation but gives us His help and grace not to be tempted to sin through thoughts, words or actions.
God our Father is victorious over all evil within our thoughts and feelings when we are tempted by the Evil one. In the mystery of faith we will need to ask for His grace to overcome the dominating thoughts and feelings afflicting us. We also pray with a generous heart for others to be protected.
Do not abandon us to the power of sin, of evil ….
But deliver us from all Evil
Through this prayer Jesus taught us we are praying to the Father for the freedom from all evil. For on our own we cannot do anything against evil.
The power of evil can only be overcome by God.
We will need to pray in the Name and the authority of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit for evil to be overcome in our lives and in the lives of others.
You have come to set the captives free. You are our powerful Liberator. Amen.
(For the Kingdom the power and the glory are yours forever and ever).