Note: This is the outline for Alameda’s virtual Bible study on Facebook Live that took place on Wednesday, April 22, 2020.
Like you, I have learned so many helpful lessons during the COVID-19 pandemic. Some of those lessons have been more like reminders pointing me back to something I have known but needed to recover. Here’s three of those…
I have been powerfully reminded of our need for connection.
I have seen – again – the importance of discipleship (which includes evangelism) as this crisis has revealed (again!) just how much people need Jesus and the hope he provides.
I have been “pushed” to go deeper in prayer.
As Jerry Trousdale and Glenn Sunshine point out in their book The Kingdom Unleashed, when you study the prayers of Jesus you can clearly see that his top priorities in prayer were:
- That the Father’s name would be glorified in the world around us.
- That His Kingdom would be ushered in with power.
- That the people of the world – and particularly His followers – would obey the Word and will of the Father.
You can observe these priorities in his “model” prayer in Matthew 6:9-13:
9 “This, then, is how you should pray:
“‘Our Father in heaven,
hallowed be your name,
10 your kingdom come,
your will be done,
on earth as it is in heaven.
11 Give us today our daily bread.
12 And forgive us our debts,
as we also have forgiven our debtors.
13 And lead us not into temptation,
but deliver us from the evil one.’
If we personalize this prayer and break it down into “smaller” prayers, we get this:
“Our Father in heaven, hallowed be your name” – May the holiness and glory of God in heaven be manifested where I live!
“your kingdom come” – May the reign of God in heaven be established where I live!
“your will be done on earth as it is in heaven” – May God’s glory be revealed to people where I live; may God’s Kingdom reign and authority advance where I live; may God’s will be established in perfect obedience where I live!
“Give us today our daily bread” – May the resources of God’s Kingdom sustain my needs day by day.
“And forgive us our debts, as we also have forgiven our debtors” – May the Lord be merciful to me, a sinner; and may I generously extend that same forgiveness to others.
“And lead us not into temptation” – May God’s Spirit keep my heart, my feet, my eyes, and my ears from places of temptation.
“but deliver us from the evil one” – May the Holy Spirit enable me to resist Satan’s temptations and empower me to be effective in redeeming people unto God from the kingdom of darkness. May the power of evil be voided where I live!
What impact might those prayers have over you, your relationships, your family, your house, your neighborhood, your school, your church, your city, or your nation if you prayed this way consistently and intentionally?