Today’s devotion builds on the thoughts from Sunday’s Sermon – Week 4 of the Lord’s Prayer Series “Give Us Today Our Daily Bread” (LISTEN HERE).
Good morning reader!
After family vacations, college visitations, and graduation celebrations, I think the rest of July should provide time to fill your morning inbox with a devotional thought for your day.
The Lord’s Prayer is probably one of the most, if not the most, familiar prayer in the Christian faith. Since Jesus gave it as he taught during the Sermon on the Mount, it has offered both verbiage and content for Christ-followers to use in prayer. Often the words of the prayer are spoken by memory. Perhaps on occasion one steps away from the exact words and prays the thoughts which Jesus captured in the seven petitions (or “little prayers”) he gave.
The series we have been working through in worship these weeks has covered the first three petitions. This week our devotions reflect on the fourth petition.
Give us this day our daily bread.
What does this mean?
God surely gives daily bread without our asking, even to all the wicked, but we pray in this petition that he would lead us to realize this and to receive our daily bread with thanksgiving.
What then is meant by daily bread?
Daily bread includes everything that we need for our bodily welfare, such as food and drink, clothing and shoes, house and home, fields and flocks, money and goods, a godly family, good workers, good government, honest leaders, good citizens good weather, peace and order, health, a good name, loyal friends and good neighbors.
Of all the petitions, this is the ask of the Lord that captures almost entirely our earthly needs. Martin Luther as he expounded on these words reflects that thought. “Daily bread includes everything that we need for our bodily welfare…”
Praying for DAILY bread is hard.
I want to pray for enough “bread” not just for today, but tomorrow, and have enough on hand for a week, month, or even a year. I don’t want an empty cupboard when I go to bed. I don’t want my family to have to worry about where their sustenance will come from. Some day I’d like to retire and want to have enough “bread” to not have to work as much or as hard anymore.
I struggle to pray for DAILY bread because I want MONTHLY bread or ANNUAL bread or 10 YEARS of bread.
But Jesus teaches me to pray for DAILY bread and not worry about a longer period of time.
Matthew 6:25-27 “Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more important than food, and the body more important than clothes? Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they? Who of you by worrying can add a single hour to his life?
Praying for daily bread is a prayer of trust. Praying for daily bread is a prayer asking for confident faith that my Father will care for me physically as his child…every day.
Apply: How would you feel if your pantry was empty every night and you had to wait until the morning to get more food for the day?
Prayer: Father in heaven, thank you for providing for me each and every day. Lead me to always pray and live with confidence that you will provide for my needs. AMEN.