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Matthew 6:5-15 The Lord’s Prayer
Make up a “pretend” grocery list, a Christmas “wish list”, and a love letter that is decorated with hearts, flowers, and fun stickers (make sure the letter is eye-catching and the other two lists are written on plain paper with pen). Show the class all three and tell them what each of them are. For instance, “This is a list I used last week when I had to go grocery shopping and get things like toilet paper, cleanser, broccoli, etc. This is a list of all the things my son/daughter wants for Christmas, and this is a letter I got from my best friend. Which of these three is the most interesting to you?” Have a brief discussion and then tell the children that we are going to hear about what Jesus finds interesting.
BOOK: Matthew 6:5-15
Jesus taught His disciples a lot of important lessons. One of the most important things Jesus taught them was how they should pray. Prayer is a special word we use that means talking to God. We use a special word “prayer” not because we have to use fancy words or be in a certain place, but because when we talk to God, it is a very special thing. We want to make sure we are showing Him that we love him in every way (respect). God is Holy and He is the Creator. Even though God is strong and powerful, He still wants us to talk to Him as our Father. We can talk to God any TIME and any PLACE. Jesus told His followers that they shouldn’t pray to show off or to act important and special. He told them not to use empty sayings, or words that they don’t feel. When they prayed, He wanted them to think about God with their minds and their hearts. We should praise God and give Him glory, like we do when we sing and worship God at the beginning of Kingdom Kids. We should ask for God to forgive the bad things we do and we need to forgive whoever hurt us. We should ask God for the things we need to live for each day. We should ask God for help not to sin and for protection from bad things. As long as we focus on God and not ourselves or things or other people, we are praying the way God wants us to pray.
When we talked about which of the three pieces of paper that I had that looked most interesting to you, the letter was the one most of us picked. Nobody wants to read and old shopping list. A Christmas wish list might seem more interesting, but mostly to the person who wants those things. A letter from a friend is so special because we know it’s from someone who loves us and who was thinking about us. We can read about what the person is feeling, learning, thinking or doing. That’s how Jesus wants us to pray to Him. Not just by listing off a bunch of things we want from Him, but in a way that shows that we love Him with our whole heart and that we want to make Him happy.
When you pray at the beginning of the day or to thank God for you food or if you’re asking God for something, remember to say what you feel and to keep your mind on how special God is. God wants us to talk to Him all the time and everywhere. Prayer is like getting a special, really cool letter every day!!
“Pray all the time.” 1 Thessalonians 5:17
Dear God, please help us to keep our minds on you when we talk to you. We want to tell you how much we love you and how wonderful you are. Thank you for your forgiveness, for all of your blessings and for protecting us. In Jesus’ Name, AMEN!!