Prayer, Plain and Simple

Prayer, Plain and Simple


“Papa God”

posted by Mark Herringshaw

We call it “the Lord’s Prayer.”  Actually, it is our prayer, taught to us by Jesus: a beautiful template to guide our conversation with our Creator. 

 

Jesus begins with the two most radical words in human history: “Our Father.”  He’s revolutionary for two reasons: First, Jesus says “our” including each of us in his invitation to address God as our kin. Secondly, he invites us to call God “Father” or, as he likely would have said in Aramaic, his original language, “Abba.” On several occasions (Mark 14:36) Jesus prayed using the word “Abba,” the word little Hebrew children used for “Daddy” or “Papa.” Bible translators seem too skittish to translate it literally, so they resort to a formal “Father.”

 

But Jesus is anything but formal. He says we must come to God as the tiny helpless children we are, or we cannot come at all.  

 

For some of us such intimacy with God seems irreverent and presumptive. It’s not easy to pray with the words, “Our Papa…” But Jesus insists this attitude is a precondition for genuine prayer. 

 

For others – those of us who have had a difficult relationship with our earthly fathers – the idea of God as “Father” becomes an emotional barrier rather than an invitation.

But Jesus never wavers. He insists that God is the Father, the foundation upon which all fatherhood is based. Even if we’ve struggled with our own fathers, his invitation stands: Come to God and allow him to be everything a father is supposed to be:

- The source of our life (John 3:3)

- Supplier of all we need (Matthew 6:31-33)

- The one who rightly disciplines us (Hebrews 12:5-11)

- The one who grants us an inheritance (Romans 8:15-17)

- The one who gives us abounding affection (I John 3:1, Luke 15:20-24)

 

Awkward as this may seem, we are summoned by Jesus to pray, “Our Daddy in heaven…” and to see him as the fulfillment of our true need for a true father.  In fact, only in a relationship with Father can heal us from the hurts and disappointments we’ve had from our own fathers.

 

Challenge: in your prayer today address God as “Father.” Then go further and address him as “Papa,” then “Daddy.” Speak it out load, whisper it as you drive to work, sing it as you wash the dishes, mutter it as lie down to sleep.

 

“Daddy…”  How does that sound?

 

Here is where “haggah” comes in into play. When you say these words of the Lord’s Prayer add more like:

“Father, you are my true Papa, the source of my life, the one who provides for me, the one who gives me a name and a true identity, the one who provides healthy, loving discipline, and the one who showers me with abounding affection…” 

Dare: Before you end the day, address God as “Papa.” It’s only at that point that true prayer really begins.



  • http://aramaicdesigns.blogspot.com Steve Caruso

    The belief that “Abba,” is the Aramaic equivalent of “Daddy” is a common myth that is in wide circulation about the Aramaic language. Unfortunately it is a bit misplaced and easily promulgated as in *Modern* Hebrew (from the 19th century and on) it has taken on that connotation.
    “Abba” in Aramaic is the Emphatic form of “av” which means “father” and in Jesus’ dialect it carried the weight of definiteness (closer to”the father” or a definite father referred to in previous context).
    Common diminutives for “daddy” in Aramaic include “baba,” “babi,” and “papya” just as common diminutives for “daddy” in Greek are “papas” and the like. However, none of these are anywhere attributed to Jesus’ own words in the Bible, nor in any extra-Biblical literature.
    You can read more about this particular myth in more detail, here:
    http://aramaicdesigns.blogspot.com/2009/06/abba-isnt-daddy-traditional-aramaic.html
    Peace,

    Steve Caruso
    Translator, Aramaic Designs
    Author, The Aramaic Blog

Previous Posts

Faith vs. Fear
"Without faith it is impossible to please God, because anyone who comes to him must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who earnestly seek him." Hebrews 11:6 “Don’t be afraid; just believe...” ~ Jesus (Luke 8:50) As I was waking up early this morning, I heard the Holy Spirit whi

posted 12:23:44pm Nov. 25, 2014 | read full post »

Into Africa, Into Ebola with Encouragment
"I brought glory to you here on earth by completing the work you gave me to do." ~ Jesus (John 17:4) On January 3rd Dr. Lowell Gess of Alexandria, Minnesota will travel to Sierra Leone to bring $100,000 of medical supplies to help against the fight of Ebola in that region. Dr. Gess lived in Sierra

posted 1:04:39pm Nov. 24, 2014 | read full post »

An Endless Circle of Affirmation and Celebration
Jesus looked up to heaven and said, “Father, the hour has come. Glorify your Son so he can give glory back to you." John 17:1 Jesus gave tutorials on prayer to His disciples. He gave them an outline of subjects for prayer; he also gave them examples of how to present (and how not to present) our

posted 1:12:10pm Nov. 21, 2014 | read full post »

You Have An Advocate
"It is best for you that I go away, because if I don’t, the Advocate won’t come. If I do go away, then I will send him to you. ..When the Spirit of truth comes, he will guide you into all truth. He will not speak on his own but will tell you what he has heard. He will tell you about the future.

posted 12:00:20pm Nov. 19, 2014 | read full post »

Jesus on Productivity
“I am the vine; you are the branches. If you remain in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing. If you do not remain in me, you are like a branch that is thrown away and withers... If you remain in me and my words remain in you, ask whatever you wish, and it wi

posted 11:43:02am Nov. 19, 2014 | read full post »




Report as Inappropriate

You are reporting this content because it violates the Terms of Service.

All reported content is logged for investigation.