Tuesday, March 10, 2009

This week's sermon: Matthew 6:7-15

My topic for this week's sermon is the Lord's Prayer -- a prayer that emphasizes the fact I've been running with the wrong crowd.

If it wasn't for the Lord's Prayer, after all, I could pretend the only thing that mattered was my personal relationship with Jesus. No, just me and him and nobody else -- that's all I need to get by.

And that would be great, because I wouldn't need to hang out with other believers any more. Wouldn't need to put up with them. Wouldn't be embarrassed by all the weird and creepy things they do.
  • The Crusades? Not my fault.
  • The Moral Majority? Nobody I knew.
  • Those beastly-looking fliers you got in the mail for an evangelistic series at my church? Hey -- don't blame me; I only go for the potlucks!
Yes, it would be so much easier for me to feel smug and superior to all those crazy Christians out there . . .

If only it wasn't for the Lord's Prayer.

Unfortunately, it begins with the phrase, "Our Father." Not my father, notice, but the Father of all His children. And all the way through, I'm forced to admit my solidarity with everyone who calls Him father -- even if they are:
  • poor (and must pray for their daily bread),
  • sinful (and must ask to be forgiven),
  • weak (and so must be guarded from temptation and protected from evil).
In short, the Lord's Prayer puts me right back in the middle of all those people who make it difficult to follow Jesus.

You know -- other believers.

And it's bad enough the Lord's Prayer forces me to pray with them.

But it also means they're praying for me.

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