A reading from the gospel according to Luke 11:1-4
1 Jesus was praying in a certain place, and when he had finished, one of his disciples said to him, “Lord, teach us to pray just as John taught his disciples.”
2 He said to them, “When you pray, say: Father, hallowed be your name,
your Kingdom come.
3 Give us each day our daily bread
4 and forgive us our sins for we ourselves forgive everyone in debt to us, and do not subject us to the final test.”
Reflection: Teach us to pray
Good News: We have one Father who gives us our daily bread and forgives our sins.
The disciples had already witness many miracles of Jesus and listened to His many teachings and yet one of them did not know how to pray. It happens to us, too. We may have been a believer for a long time and yet there are moments that we do not know how to pray or we are out of words to say. Let us ask the Holy Spirit that in moments like this, He will teach us how to pray and what to pray for.
Jesus tells us to be like children (Matthew 18:1-3). In the gospel above, He tells us to call God our father. Imagine yourself a six or seven year old child climbing on your father’s lap. Your father extends his arms around you and kisses you on your forehead. You feel the warmth and you feel loved and secured. This is exactly what happens when we consider ourselves as children of God our father.
All of humanity is but one family under the fatherhood of God in heaven. We are all brothers and sisters with a loving father who provides our daily needs and who forgives our sins. When we develop a deep relationship with our father in heaven, we yearn for His reign to be fulfilled not just in our own life but in the whole world at present and in the world to come.
Note that the forgiveness of one’s sins does not happen unless we forgive the sins of others. Recall the parable of the unforgiving servant in Matthew 18:21–35. Our father is kind and merciful to us and He is always ready to forgive us. We ought to be like Him.
Finally, Jesus knew what it means to be put to the test because He Himself experienced it. So He teaches to pray that our loving father will spare us from trials which will become our downfall or to give us the strength to overcome a particular temptation.