Our Father in heaven

“This, then, is how you should pray: “Our Father in heaven, hallowed be your name…” (Matthew 6:9)

Making New Year resolutions is a tradition, most common in the Western World  “in which a person resolves to continue good practices, change undesired behaviour, accomplish a personal goal, or otherwise improve their behaviour at the beginning of the calendar year.” (Wikipedia).

The top three resolutions in 2022 and 2023 in a country in the Western World: exercise more; eat healthier; lose weight. I wonder, what are the top 3 resolutions in another country: Vietnam, Venezuela or Ethiopia?

The most common Christian New Year resolutions? Read the Bible (more); pray more; be more generous…

The Lord’s Prayer, I believe, gives us the opportunity to enrich our understanding of life (from a Biblical point of view) which will help us live better lives in the year that we have already entered.

In Matthew’s gospel we have the Sermon on the Mount, spanning three chapters (5-7). The Lord’s Prayer is part of Jesus’ sermon and got its name from the fact that it was used by our Lord as an example.

Jesus touches on a number of aspects of life, but has this specific and clear underlying message: God is good; He cares for you more than you think…He is a good Father.

Time and time again, He uses the expression, “…your Father…”

In light of all this, when Jesus touches upon the subject of prayer, He is actually saying, “Because God is your heavenly Father, you ought to pray, “Our Father in heaven…”

Three words which express a world view – a way to look at the world. These words hold the “Christian world view”: God as the Creator of Heaven and Earth is our Father. It is proper, I believe, to live throughout the year with this basic understanding that our heavenly Father cares for us.