The Law of Praying is the Law of Believing
In the fifth century, a theologian known as Prosper of Aquitaine wrote of the church’s belief flowed from her prayer life. This reality came to be known as “lex orandi, lex credenda”—the law of prayer is the law of belief. It reflects the importance of praying rightly in order that we continue to believe rightly.
The Apostle Paul declares to us, “Pray without ceasing” (1 Th. 5:17). To facilitate this sort of constant prayer, many of us have been told, “Prayer isn’t hard; it’s just talking with God.” Indeed, prayer is that simple, but simplicity doesn’t imply sloppily. Allowing our prayer conversation with God to lapse into careless content and empty expressions as Jesus accuses the Pharisees of doing (Mt. 6:7). Rather than pray like that, Jesus delivers what’s become known as the Lord’s Prayer to his disciples.
Martin Luther called the Lord’s Prayer “the schoolmaster of all prayer.” We learn from Jesus’ teaching to call upon God as the “preached” God rather than the “unpreached” God. That means we call upon the God who is the Father of our brother Jesus Christ. We pray to the Father, through the Son, and in the Holy Spirit.
Prayers to Live outside of ourselves in Christ and in the neighbor
Heavenly Father keep us hearing your Word so that your Son, Jesus Christ, would be our life, an inexhaustible source of love and service to our neighbors near and far, in Christ’s name we pray. Amen
Heavenly Father do not let us turn inward, curving in upon ourselves, and looking for signs of your Word’s effectiveness. Turn us outward that we may receive the ministrations of our preacher in the handing over of Jesus Christ to be our life and that we may appreciate our neighbors’ needs and help them in their distress, in the name of Christ we pray. Amen
Heavenly Father so draw me to live in Christ that I would enjoy the fullness of his righteous immortality and not fear the emptiness of my mortality and death in sin, in the name of Christ I pray. Amen
Heavenly Father, since you hold me in the fullness of Jesus’ life, grant that I may pour out my life before others in usefulness and helpfulness, in the name of Christ. Amen
Heavenly Father, you have promised to answer when we call on you in times of trouble. In such times, send me a neighbor who will deliver the gifts of this creation as I need them; or, send me a neighbor who will be my preacher delivering the gifts of the new creation as I need them, in the name of Christ. Amen
Heavenly Father, since we live in the reality of your promises and not out of the disappointments of this old, passing-away creation, draw us in yearning and anticipation of that day when the promised return of your Son shall be known by sight, in the name of Jesus. Amen
Heavenly Father grant to us both courage and confidence that we may call on you in times of trouble and pray to you without ceasing, in the name of Christ. Amen