GIVE US TODAY OUR DAILY BREAD
Take a few minutes to pause in silence, to breathe deep, and to recenter your thoughts, your focus, and your affections on God. “As I enter now into prayer, I ask, God, that you would free me from the distractions of the day so that I may be deeply present with You.”
“ GIVE US TODAY OUR DAILY BREAD.” - MATTHEW 6:11
Once again, we are reminded of the communal aspect of this prayer. Jesus doesn’t say that I should pray for MY daily bread but for OUR daily bread. God desires to meet our needs, and He often chooses to do so in the context of community. Just look at the early church…
ALL THE BELIEVERS WERE TOGETHER AND HAD EVERYTHING IN COMMON. THEY SOLD PROPERTY AND POSSESSIONS TO GIVE TO ANYONE WHO HAD NEED. EVERY DAY THEY CONTINUED TO MEET TOGETHER IN THE TEMPLE COURTS. THEY BROKE BREAD IN THEIR HOMES AND ATE TOGETHER WITH GLAD AND SINCERE HEARTS, PRAISING GOD AND ENJOYING THE FAVOR OF ALL THE PEOPLE. AND THE LORD ADDED TO THEIR NUMBER DAILY THOSE WHO WERE BEING SAVED. - ACTS 2:44-47
We weren’t meant to do life alone! So, even in our model for prayer, Jesus reminds us to not only seek God for how He might meet our needs, but also for how He might use us to meet the needs of those around us.
“Lord, as I bring my requests to You, may my focus never just be on me. Open my eyes to how You might want to use me to meet the needs of those around me.”
Jesus is also intentional about the order of this prayer. Once we have submitted ourselves to Jesus as our King, and once we have prayed for his kingdom to come and his will to be done, then our hearts will be ready to ask him to GIVE us the things we need and desire.
TAKE DELIGHT IN THE LORD, AND HE WILL GIVE YOU THE DESIRES OF YOUR HEART. - PSALM 37:4
The charge of Psalm 37:4 is two-fold. First, once we have delighted ourselves in the Lord, and submitted our ways to Him, then He is the one who actually births desires into our hearts that line up with His will. With our hearts being shaped by Him, we are then released to pray that God would grant us our heart’s desires, with full assurance that we will be praying the will of God.
BUT SEEK FIRST HIS KINGDOM AND HIS RIGHTEOUSNESS, AND ALL THESE THINGS WILL BE GIVEN TO YOU AS WELL. - MATTHEW 6:33
We cannot get this order backwards - God, His kingdom, and His will must come first. Then, and only then, are we able to pray, GIVE…” So, with your will fully surrendered to His, take a few moments and ask for the things that you desire God to do in your life, in the lives of those around you, in your church, and on this earth.
Jesus’ model of prayer calls us to specifically ask God to give us
our daily “bread”. It reminds us of what Jesus said to the crowd in
John chapter 6:
THEN JESUS DECLARED, “I AM THE BREAD OF LIFE. WHOEVER COMES TO ME WILL NEVER GO HUNGRY, AND WHOEVER BELIEVES IN ME WILL NEVER BE THIRSTY. - JOHN 6:35
Jesus was calling back to Exodus 16, where God provided bread and quail for the Israelites while they were living in the desert. While that bread may have given life and sustenance to His people at that time, it is now Jesus who would bring life and Jesus who would sustain us.
Most of us probably wished that Jesus’ prayer said, “give us today our YEARLY bread” or “give us today all the bread that we need for this season of life”. Instead, Jesus’ charge was to simply pray for our “daily” bread. Whereas, most of us wished we could always see the big picture of our lives, God often just wants to know if we will trust Him with the next step - today’s step. Don’t lose today’s joy because you are too focused on tomorrow.
“Father, I submit myself to the work that You want to do in me TODAY. Give me the strength that I need, wisdom to guide me, and faith to trust You with tomorrow. Thank you that it is You, and only You, who satisfies my soul.