There are Naked Ladies in my garden, soaking up the August sunshine.
When I see them, I think of the Lord’s Prayer.
Naked Ladies are also called Belladonna Lilies. They earned their nickname due to their leafless long stems that produce funnel-shaped flowers in late summer.
What do Naked Ladies have to do with the Lord’s Prayer?
Yesterday while I dug shallow holes for these plants, it occurred to me …
Plants like my Naked Ladies need four things to survive: water, oxygen, sunlight, soil.
According to the Lord’s Prayer, these are my needs.
What about Marriage? Children? Success? Wealth?
Sorry, these aren’t mentioned in the Lord’s Prayer (Matthew 6:9-13).
This passage, simple enough for a child to memorize, packs a deadly punch….to my egocentric heart.
Even the words preceding this prayer humbles me.
“Lord, teach us to pray.”
The disciples didn’t assume, they wanted to know how to pray.
“Lord, teach us to pray” …. is a prayer in itself.
A challenge for me to come before God with a teachable heart and one request. “Lord, teach me to pray.”
I don’t want my prayers to resemble a laundry list of perceived needs for myself and others.
I don’t want to be a taskmaster, telling God what I want fixed, finished, and furnished. And make it quick.
Even when I praise God’s attributes, thank Him for my blessings, and ask Him to forgive my sins….
There is still too much of me, and too little of God in my prayers.
HE should have turned me into a pillar of salt long ago.
But instead, the Lord teaches me to pray while I kneel in the dirt, head bowed beneath a canopy of oak trees…an earthly sanctuary where His Prayer convicts and fills my heart anew.
“Our Father in heaven,
Hallowed by YOUR Name
YOUR kingdom come,
YOUR will be done, on earth as it is in heaven.”
Hmm, this prayer is all about God. What about ME: My reputation, My life, My will? My needs?
“Give us today, our daily Bread
And forgive us our debts as we also have forgiven our debtors
And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from the evil one.”
There are other prayers in the Bible, other needs addressed.
But, when the disciples said, “Lord, teach us to pray.”
Our Father was the prayer Jesus taught them.
I need to pray likewise, and be thankful when God meets these needs!