Praying the Lord's Prayer recently took on new meaning when I decided to say the prayer out loud at least twice instead of reading.
Here is what happened:
1. My own version of the prayer surfaced -
"My father in heaven, Holy is your name.
Help me bring a glimpse of heaven where I walk through my words and actions.
Thank you for the food you will give me to eat,
Forgive my sins as I forgive those who sin against me.
Lead me not into temptation, but deliver me from evil.
Keep me always focused on seeking you.
Your kingdom is forever. Amen.
2. I liked hearing the sound of my voice repeating the familiar and new words. I could feel the vibrations of the vocal chords in my throat.
3. Repeating Jesus; words several times took me directly to the silence of my heart, where I rested for as long as I desired, inhaling God's presence until I was ready to continue with the remaining part of my prayer time.
Although I speak the words of the Lord's Prayer in church each Sunday, saying them in the quiet early morning at my desk with my warm, furry cat curled on my lap, has become a way for me to intimately interact, enter and remain in God's presence.
Next time you want to try something new, spend time with God saying your prayers. Listen to your voice. Feel the vibrations coming from your throat and become aware of your heart. Often, I repeat the Lord's Prayer several times. You may find, like I did, that entering into the space of God's presence may lead you to paraphrase the words, giving them new energy. God, can wok through your repetition to bring a personal expression of Jesus' words.
Finally, the Lord's Prayer involves being present. Jesus said, "Give us this day our daily bread." - not tomorrow's bread, but today's bread. We are guided how to respond to one day only, with forgiveness, avoiding temptation, seeking God, celebrating God's kingdom, and honoring God's power and glory
Spending time with the Lord's Prayer, repeating the words slowly, with sensory awareness can assist the descent to your heart, swollen with openness to receive what God wants to place in the morning and throughout the day.
The heart is ready,
Jesus is there,
Go forth in the kingdom,
Filled and prepared.