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The Great School of Prayer

School's in session, and the Holy Spirit is the teacher.

“In this manner, therefore, pray:
Our Father in heaven,
Hallowed be Your name.”
Matthew 6.9

Life Together
Dietrich Bonhoeffer (1906-1945)
“In the Psalter we learn to pray on the basis of Christ’s prayer. The Psalter is the great school of prayer. Here we learn, first, what prayer means. It means praying according to the Word of God, on the basis of promises…Second, we learn from the prayer of the psalms what we should pray. Certain as it is that the scope of the prayer of the psalms ranges far beyond the experience of the individual, nevertheless the individual prays in faith the whole prayer of Christ, the prayer of him who was true Man and who alone possesses the full range of experiences expressed in this prayer.”

The Lord’s Prayer represents a distillation and outline of many of the great prayer themes of the Psalms. When Jesus taught His disciples to pray “like this” He offered a framework for daily prayer that can be richly embellished and enlarged by appealing to the psalms. We can see how Psalm 8, for example, exalts the Lord (“hallowed by your name”) in more specific detail – for His creation and providence, as well as for His work in making, redeeming, and commissioning us to His service. Every psalm can fit within the outline of the Lord’s Prayer – which I think is what Jesus intended. As you take up praying the psalms, see where you can fit them within the framework of the Lord’s prayer. Then, when you pray the Lord’s Prayer, you’ll find that you have rich, Spirit-given language to fill up the place-markers Christ provides us in that beloved prayer. The school of prayer which is the book of psalms has much to teach us, so that we can grow to be the people of prayer God intends. But we’ll need to be present when the Spirit calls us to order, and have our textbooks open, ready to recite as directed.

Look for another psalm that “hallows” the name of the Lord. Try praying that one today in addition to Psalm 8.

Praying the Psalms
For more instruction in how to use the psalms in prayer – and why you should – order a copy of our book, God’s Prayer Program(click here). Here you will learn information and guidelines to help you make praying the psalms a regular part of your prayer life.

While we’re at it…
And if you want to see how the psalms can be used in seeking the Lord for revival, order our book, Restore Us!In this book, not only do we explain why praying for revival is important, we also provide 12 psalms specially set up for use in seeking the Lord for revival. Order your copy by clicking here.

Our heavenly Father supports The Fellowship of Ailbe through the generous and faithful gifts of those who benefit from and believe in our work. Does the Lord want to use you in this way? Please look to Him in prayer over this question. You can contribute to The Fellowship of Ailbe by using the Contribute button at our website, or by sending your gift to The Fellowship of Ailbe, 19 Tyler Drive, Essex Junction, VT 05452. Thank you.

Except as indicated, Scripture taken from the New King James Version. © Copyright 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

T.M. Moore

T. M. Moore is principal of The Fellowship of Ailbe, a spiritual fellowship in the Celtic Christian tradition. He and his wife, Susie, make their home in the Champlain Valley of Vermont.
Books by T. M. Moore

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