Where, To Whom, and Why to pray (Prayer day 11)

Before Jesus taught his disciples WHAT to pray, he taught them WHERE, TO WHOM and WHY (NOT) to pray.

This story of Ps Bill Hybels will greatly enhance your reflection on Scripture reading. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-xU9GR4H0WQ


Matthew 6:5-9 the beginning of Jesus’ teaching on prayer.

5  “And when you pray, you must not be like the hypocrites. For they love to stand and pray in the synagogues and at the street corners, that they may be seen by others. Truly, I say to you, they have received their reward. 6  But when you pray, go into your room and shut the door and pray to your Father who is in secret. And your Father who sees in secret will reward you.

7  “And when you pray, do not heap up empty phrases as the Gentiles do, for they think that they will be heard for their many words. 8  Do not be like them, for your Father knows what you need before you ask him.

Observations and reflections

  1. Jesus’ first teaching on prayer is WHERE to pray (v5-6). Where should we pray, and why does that matter?
  2. Jesus’s second teaching on prayer is TO WHOM to pray. (v6)
  • What difference does it make to pray to God “our Father” vs “God our Creator” or “God our Judge”? (hint: think of the relation and role of a father to his children)
  • What is God our Father like? Write down the first ten things you know the Bible teaches about God our Father.
  1. Why should we not use many words when asking God for things? (v7-8)
  • If God already knows about our needs, what does Jesus imply about WHY we pray? (hint: prayer is not primarily about…)
  • In your opinion, WHY do you think we should primarily pray? (hint: to WHOM do we pray?)

Personal reflection and Prayer

Without a regular platform WHERE we meet God our Father in prayer, our relationship with God will be incidental and fractured like a drive-through restaurant, leaving our knowledge of God shallow.   But a regular place and time to meet our Father will ensure we stop and talk about our deeper and more important concerns, and where we evaluate our thoughts and desires in his presence – so we may know Him and become like Him (Phil 3:10).

  1. WHERE and when do you usually meet with God your Father? Does that time and place allow you to have a meaningful encounter with God?  How can you adjust it to make it more meaningful?
  2. Does your meetings with God feel like meetings with YOUR FATHER? How do you view and experience God’s presence and response to your prayers?
  3. If someone were to listen to your prayers, WHY would they say do you pray? I.e. what do you mainly pray about?
  4. Spend some time to talk to God your Father about where and why you pray. Ask Him to teach and lead your meetings, because you want to know him and become like him.


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