Yesterday we finished the story of Elijah from 1 and 2 Kings. Today in our first reading from Sirach 48, we get a recap of Elijah’s life and ministry. In the Gospel reading today from Matthew 6, Jesus teaches His disciples how to pray.
“This is how you are to pray…” He then teaches them the Our Father. For many who are Christian from birth, this is the first prayer we learn how to pray. Most of us can recite it from memory. For Catholics, it is very familiar, since we pray it every time we go to Mass.
It truly is the perfect prayer. We start by acknowledging God as Father, and blessing his holy name. We then ask not that the kingdoms of men be built up, but that God’s Kingdom will come. Then rather than asking for our will, we we ask that God’s will be done. We end with four petitions: asking that God will feed us, forgive us, not lead us into temptation and deliver us from evil. For those times when we’re not sure what to pray for or how to pray, this prayer should always be on our lips.
Father, these words of Jesus emanate from our hearts, this day and every day. Amen.