Beliefnet
Prayer, Plain and Simple

“Your Kingdom come, your will be done on earth as in heaven”

 

Minnesota is not heaven, I assure you, especially in February. Even now, in August’s green, lush, heavy and humid dog days, it’s a far distance from paradise. The mosquitoes make that clear!

 

“…As it is in heaven.” God’s will is always done in Heaven. Justice reigns there. A perpetual party rolls on and on. As C.S. Lewis puts it, “Joy is the chief business of heaven.”

 

Earth… Minnesota… is a different matter.  Earth is not Heaven. Justice and joy are not universal here. A once over through the morning paper proves that plagues, storms, wars, corruption, violence and corporate deception reign on earth on August 22nd. Heaven’s another story.

 

Prayer bridges the gap between domains. Through prayer we welcome God’s rule into our dimension. We open a conduit for God to invade and convert these elements into outposts of Heaven.  With prayer we “vote” to allow God to annex pieces of our world into Heaven’s civic boundaries.

 

By declaring, “…on earth as it is in heaven” from the Lord’s prayer, we connect the dots between aspects of God’s name (those we explored yesterday in “hallowed be your name”) with degenerated situations in the world. This plank of prayer brings God’s perfect nature and the world’s imperfection into an exploding collision.

 

Example: We might amplify this part of the Lord’s Prayer saying, “God you are perfect Peace. This is your name. But today there is not much peace in my home. There is tension and distrust and anger. Please come and take over this small part of the world.  Push out what is wrong and Fill my house here on earth with the same atmosphere of rest and security that fills your house in Heaven?”  

 

By teaching us to dare and ask, “your Kingdom come,” Jesus invites us to invite God to extend his government over the targets of our prayer: the lives of our children, our finances, minds, bodies, emotions, our circles of relationships, our nation, the natural world.

 

In prayer we proclaim the simple universal fact of God’s authority. Then we ask God to enforce this fact in areas that have – up this point – refused to acknowledge Him.  

 

Action: Audit your life and start a list of names of people in your circle and particular situations you’re facing. Say these names to God, and add the line, “Let you Kingdom come [in George’s life… in my marriage… in the nation of Congo…] as it is in heaven.” Then the adventure begins and continues when things actually begin to change!

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