We have covered the two places in the Gospels that record the Lord’s Prayer. Unfortunately, neither Mark nor John has a version of Jesus’ prayer for us to ponder. Fortunately, many others do! Today I want us to pray aloud the New Zealand Version of Lord’s Prayer.
Eternal Spirit, Earth-maker, Pain bearer, Life-giver, Source of all that is and that shall be, Father and Mother of us all, Loving God, in whom is heaven: The hallowing of your name echo through the universe; The way of your justice be followed by the peoples of the world; Your heavenly will be done by all created beings; Your commonwealth of peace and freedom sustain our hope and come on earth. With the bread we need for today, feed us. In the hurts we absorb from one another, forgive us. In times of temptation and test, strengthen us. From trial too great to endure, spare us. From the grip of all that is evil, free us. For you reign in the glory of the power that is love, now and forever. Amen.
With three versions of this prayer now swirling in your mind, stirring in your heart, and singing to your soul, what insights or ideas do you have? Pause with that question. Pay attention and turn your intention toward asking what is awakening within you three days into praying the Lord’s Prayer.
I continue to encourage you to refrain and resist rating or ranking these versions. We can get so caught up in wanting to name our preference. The problem for me with this is two-fold. First, we name our preference as the best and want to argue with others who hold a different perspective. That is, I will emphatically state that clearly Luke is the most faithful, awesome, accurate, and the best version ever. And if you don’t agree with me then I feel compelled to try to change your understanding. Why do we do this? There is another way to listen and learn, to deepen and bridge what divides us through appreciation and affirmation. Second, when we rate and rank, we are operating in human realm not God’s realm (this contradicts the very prayer we just prayed!). Humans want to know who is on first, what is on second, and (I can’t resist), I don’t know is on third (thank you, Abbot and Castelo). We want to know what is trending on Twitter and who has the most “likes” on social media. This prayer declares there is another way. It is my prayer that the more we pray these words, the more we will let God’s wisdom get a word in edgewise that can challenge and change our lives.
Prayer: Go back, and pray the New Zealand version again, and observe/be open to what shifts in your soul as you do.