During a crisis or tragedy, we often hear well-wishers offer their “thoughts and prayers.” Some people proffer these words as platitudes, while others extol genuine empathy for those who are hurting.
People pray a personal petition to God, while faithfully waiting for him to respond. His answers are seen in the hands and feet of his children, yet also in unseen ways we may never know this side of eternity.
Jesus taught his disciples to pray by modeling what has famously become known as “The Lord’s Prayer.” As I’ve watched society respond to the coronavirus pandemic, and engage daily in prayer for God’s intervention in our dilemma, I viewed the modeling of Christ a bit differently, today.
The coronavirus has created a physical, financial, and emotional toll, rarely seen before. As a result, more people are praying now, than a few months ago.
Below, I’ve included the Lord’s Prayer in bold font, yet added my italicized personal comments and prayerful thoughts on behalf of humanity. If you’re a praying person, I’d encourage you to silently let God know your thoughts as well.
Our Father in heaven,
Hallowed be Your name.
Forgive us for not coming to you more often. It’s seems like we reserve our communication for times of crisis. Nevertheless, thank you for hearing us.
Your kingdom come.
Your will be done
On earth as it is in heaven.
We believe that you are aware of every person who contracts coronavirus. We don’t fully understand why some are taken, while others recover, but in faith we yield to your plan, and believe that you care for us with an everlasting love.
Give us this day our daily bread.
Admittedly, we are struggling with this. Identifying essential needs versus non-essential greeds is part of the growing process we hope to achieve through our discomfort and trials. However, so many people have lost jobs. Therefore, we ask for your provision in this area.
And forgive us our debts,
As we forgive our debtors.
It’s easy to receive grace and mercy, but difficult to dispense it. Teach us how to be kind and caring people. Moreover, instill in our hearts a sense of forgiveness for others during this time of distress and suffering.
And do not lead us into temptation,
Shield our hearts and minds from things that tear us apart, and grant us understanding.
But deliver us from the evil one.
While we stumble due to our imperfect condition, please pick us up and give us wisdom to know the difference between a trap that enslaves us and a triumph that honors you.
For Yours is the kingdom and the power and the glory forever.
May your kingdom be reflected in our life and our actions governed by your presence. Thank you that your grace is sufficient, your comfort is constant, and you promise to never abandon us.
The video below captures a great story about answered prayer.
God can use each one of us if we make ourselves available.
– Jim McNeff
The Lord’s Prayer – Matthew 6:9-13, New King James Version