This, then, is how you should pray:
Our Father in heaven, hallowed be your name, your kingdom come,
your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven. 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.
John Wesley, the founder of Methodism, once wrote in a letter that prayer “is the grand means of drawing near to God.” Now, perhaps I’m biased as a Methodist pastor, but Wesley’s words ring true to me, in part because of how prayer has helped me in my own life “draw near” to God.
But while I affirm Wesley’s words about prayer, I have to confess that I also find prayer to be mysterious and, at times, even confusing. And over the years, I’ve discovered that many others also have questions about prayer. Questions like:
What is prayer? How am I supposed to pray? And most importantly…. does prayer make a difference?
Something we see in the gospel accounts is that Jesus’ disciples also had questions about prayer. And in Luke’s gospel, we’re told that one day a group of Jesus’ followers approach Him and asked:
Lord, teach us how to pray.
And Jesus responded to this request by teaching them a particular prayer, a prayer that we still say to this every single Sunday: “Our Father who art in heaven…”
At church this Sunday, we’re going to start a new sermon series on this very prayer that Jesus gave us. And each week, we’ll be exploring a new line of it and considering what these words mean and how they invite us to pray and live differently.
But in the meantime, I invite all of us to stop and consider:
How was the Lord’s Prayer shaped how you pray and how you understand prayer?
What parts of the Lord’s Prayer inspire you? And what parts might be a little confusing?
Friends, I’m excited for what God has in store for us as we begin to study this life-changing prayer that Jesus gave us!
We are looking for one volunteer to buy food and another volunteer to deliver food for the week of August 29th to September 5th. Should you purchase the food, you will be given the names and needs of the individual/or family a week in advance. If you are interested in being a part of this important outreach ministry, please connect with either Walter Maze or John Newton.
Important Prayer Request: Bruce LaPenta & Family
It is with a heavy heart that we announce that Bruce LaPenta’s father passed away yesterday. We ask that you keep our beloved brother in Christ and his entire family in your prayers during this season of loss.
Our church is going through a study on Unafraid, a book about how we can live with hope during uncertain times. There will be one group meeting on Tuesdays at 1 pm and another group meeting on Sundays at 9 am. If you’d like to join the Tuesday group, you can contact Lynn Becker for more details at email@example.com, while Bruce LaPenta will be leading the Sunday group and can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
PLEASE NOTE: THERE WILL BE NO STUDY ON SUNDAY, JULY 18TH
House Meetings to Welcome Pastor Chris
During the summer, we are holding small gatherings to provide an opportunity for members to spend time with Pastor Chris and for him to learn more about the people and ministries of Flemington UMC.
Our first house meeting will be this Thursday, July 22nd, at 3:00 pm at Lynn Becker’s house. To let Lynn know who to expect and to make sure our gathering is an appropriate size, we ask that you fill out the signup sheet at the back of the sanctuary or email Lynn @ email@example.com. If you can’t attend this house meeting, no worries! More house meetings will be scheduled.
Coffee Hour will be resuming on Sunday, August 1st, after service. It will include coffee, tea, and bagels and will be kept to just an hour.
You will find every newsletter, worship service, devotional, and additional material posted to our Facebook page: http://www.facebook.com/FlemingtonUnitedMethodist/
Even if you don’t use Facebook, you can access everything we have there. If you do have a Facebook account, “like” to follow our page and be notified when new things are posted or when videos are about to go live so you don’t miss anything.