One of my favorite prayer practices is to simply pray the Lord’s Prayer (Matthew 6:9–13) for something specific. It could be a spiritual battle I’m going through or a person. Let me share two examples of what this means:
1. The Frustrating Coworker
Say there’s a coworker who has been talking bad about you to your boss and coworkers, and people are starting to turn on you at work. (Watch a short video of this example.) Pray like this:
- Father, help me glorify Your name in this trial with my annoying coworker in every thought, word, and deed.
- Would Your Kingdom come in the life of this man—grant him faith and repentance unto salvation, and would You help me live obediently under Your kingship as I persevere in this trial.
- Lord, You know how I want to be vindicated and how I don’t want to lose credibility at work, but would Your will be done in this situation. I submit to You.
- Please give me the wisdom, patience, self-control, love, and the words to say in this situation.
- Please forgive me for the bitterness and anger that have welled up in me because of my coworker’s sin against me, and help me forgive him as You have forgiven me.
- Lead me not into the temptation of wanting revenge, or growing more angry, and deliver me from evil people and the attacks of the enemy who wants me to dishonor You with my actions.
That is just one example of how praying the Lord’s Prayer gives us words to pray to God.
I’ve found it so helpful because I don’t naturally pray against sin growing in my heart when others sin against me, but that’s the beauty of praying the Lord’s Prayer—it is comprehensive and helps us prioritize what God wants us to pray.
2. The Sick Nephew
Someone asked how they can pray the Lord’s Prayer for a sick nephew. This is what I sent her:
- Our Father in heaven, hallowed be Your name. Lord, would You be glorified in my nephew’s sickness—bring good out of it for the glory of Your name. Be glorified in how I respond to his sickness, and be glorified in the result.
- Would Your kingdom come in his life so that He sees the beauty and power of Jesus. Would Your kingdom come through this terrible situation so this sickness is not in vain, but that it bring many to know and worship You. Would Your kingdom come more in me as I grieve living in our world of sickness and pain.
- Your will be done in the life of my nephew. I desperately plead for his physical healing, but I also realize spiritual healing is most important. Lord, would he come to know You if he doesn’t already. And if he already knows You, would You extend his life for Your glory. But Your will be done Father. If You choose to take him, use this great trial in our lives here on earth to deepen our love for You and longing for heaven.
- Please provide his daily bread of health, medicine, strength, and wise medical advice he needs to help him progress. We ask for Your healing upon him O, Father. We can’t do it on our own.
- Please forgive him of his sins and help him hate the sin in his life. Please grant him a forgiving heart that reflects the heart of Christ. May he treasure Your grace more each day.
- Lead him not into the temptation of feeling sorry for himself, going into despair, or a complaining heart. Keep him from the other temptations that sickness may bring. Deliver him from this sickness and from any evil or harm that may come his way. We depend on You, O Father and look to You for help and strength.
I’m convinced the Lord’s Prayer is the ultimate prayer tool and the first thing believers should memorize, that’s why I mention it so much in my book When Prayer Is a Struggle. If we can learn how to use this Spirit-inspired prayer tool well, many of our struggles to pray will dissipate.