This morning my church embarked on a new series entitled Better Together. We kicked off the series with today's message: "Huddle Up!"
Matthew 6:9-13 contains the well-known "Lord's Prayer" 0r better known as the prayer we use before a football game! But this prayer is the capstone upon which we should lay the foundation for our entire lives. So, let's break it down. Let's huddle up and learn our game plan for this thing that we call life.
Matthew 6:5-7 all begin with "and when you pray. . .," not "and if you pray." Prayer is essential for living and breathing. Prayer is to our spiritual life as air is to our physical life. So, what does huddling up in prayer with God do to us and for us?
This then is how you should pray: Our Father in Heaven, hallowed be Your Name. . . Our Focus Makes Us Better Together. Matthew 6:33 states, "But seek first His kingdom and His righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well." We must firsts focus on who God is before we can even think about our day. Several times in the Bible we get a glimpse of Jesus going out early in the morning to spend time alone with His Father. This not only strengthened Jesus, but it also refreshed and rejuvenated Him as well.
You kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as it is in Heaven. . . His Inspiration Makes Us Better Together. When we choose to pray in Jesus' Name, we invite Heaven to invade our lives. God created us to win, not to lose! We can only accomplish God-sized goals when we focus on God alone and get our inspiration from Heaven--not the world around us. Colossians 3:23 says, "Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for men."
Give us today our daily bread. . . His Strength Makes Us Better Together. A question that you and I must wrestle with on a daily basis is "whose strength am I relying on? My own or God's?" As Philippians 4:19 says, "And my God will meet all your needs according to His glorious riches in Christ Jesus." Trust Him. That's key.
Forgive us our debts, as we also have forgiven our debtors. . . Our Fresh Start Makes Us Better Together. Man, forgiveness is not an easy thing. We all go through trials that we do not understand. People are human beings who hurt others. Sadly, that is a part of life, but we have the power in us through Christ to forgive those who have hurt us. If you think about it, you need just as much forgiveness as those who have hurt you. Christ died for your sins. That's huge! Show His forgiveness to others.
And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from the evil one. . . Gives Us Courage Making Us Better Together. "If God is for us, who can be against us?" Romans 8:31 rightfully admonishes. Are we willing to trust Jesus Christ and believe Him at His Word? We have the same God who strengthened a small shepherd boy and made him into a king. The same God who took an orphan girl and led her down the hallway of a king's palace in order to save a nation. The same God who used a man with a speech impediment to free a people in bondage. The very same God who brought His Son into the world through a teenage virgin. This God can do anything through you. You just have to accept His courage and take Him at His word.
My encouragement to you is this (and my entire church was challenged to do this too!): pray the Lord's Prayer (Matthew 6:9-13) every day for one month. And please do not just say it and then check it off your to-do list. Really pray it--and mean it. I can't wait to hear the stories of how we truly can be better together after we have huddled up with our Head Coach!