I’d like to share two prayers that I believe kept me in God’s hand, all my life, (when I wasn’t exactly living right) in hopes that they will help someone reading this column.
The first one is known as the “Our Father” or “The Lord’s Prayer,” and it’s found in Matthew chapter 6, verses 9-13. I am printing more than that though, because Jesus does teach us how to pray, as you can see, if you continue reading. The second prayer, I could not find in my bible. I learned it while attending Holy Rosary Catholic church and school, in San Antonio, Texas. It’s called the “Act of Contrition.”
MATTHEW 6:5-15 - Prayer
5"And when you pray, do not be like the hypocrites, for they love to pray standing in the synagogues and on the street corners to be seen by men. I tell you the truth, they have received their reward in full. 6But when you pray, go into your room, close the door and pray to your Father, who is unseen. Then your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you. 7And when you pray, do not keep on babbling like pagans, for they think they will be heard because of their many words. 8Do not be like them, for your Father knows what you need before you ask him.
9"This, then, is how you should pray:
“ ‘Our Father in heaven,
hallowed be your name,
10your kingdom come,
your will be done
on earth as it is in heaven.
11Give us today our daily bread.
12Forgive us our debts,
as we also have forgiven our debtors.
13And lead us not into temptation,
but deliver us from the evil one.’ 14For if you forgive men when they sin against you, your heavenly Father will also forgive you. 15But if you do not forgive men their sins, your Father will not forgive your sins.” NIV
Act of Contrition
Oh, my God, I am heartily sorry for having offended Thee, and I detest all my sins because of Thy just punishments; but most of all, because they offend Thee oh Lord, Who art all good, and deserving of all my love; I firmly resolve, with the help of Thy Grace, to sin no more, and to avoid the near occasion of sin. Amen.
Take time to pray. Since I began earnestly walking hand in hand with our Lord, I have learned that we are made in His image and likeness, and He sent His Son Jesus, as a man, to walk with us, talk with us, and teach us that God is Spirit. (We also are a spirit). Our spirit lives forever, long after this earthly body has decayed.
Jesus said in John 4:24 - “God is spirit, and his worshipers must worship in spirit and in truth.”
If we walk with God, believing He is holding our right hand, as it is written in Isaiah 41:13 - “For I am the LORD, your God, who takes hold of your right hand and says to you, Do not fear; I will help you” so then, we can form a picture in our minds, that our right hand is lifted up, and we are walking hand in hand with God, and can speak to Him in our hearts, the same way we would speak to a friend who could be walking right next to us. It doesn’t need to be a special format as in the prayers above.
1 Timothy 2:5-6 - “5For there is one God and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus, 6who gave himself as a ransom for all men—the testimony given in its proper time.”
Since Jesus is our Mediator, He pleads our case to the Father, and in our hearts the Holy Spirit perfects our prayers, as it is written in Romans 8:26-27 - “ 26In the same way, the Spirit helps us in our weakness. We do not know what we ought to pray for, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us with groans that words cannot express. 27And he who searches our hearts knows the mind of the Spirit, because the Spirit intercedes for the saints in accordance with God’s will.”
Thank You, Jesus, we love You.