Pray then like this: “Our Father in heaven, hallowed be your name. (Matthew 6:9)
Every time I walk in my home, my children scream, “Daddy Stampede!!” and run to throw their arms around me. It is the highlight of my day. They run to me because of our relationship. I am their “Daddy” and because of our intimate and personal relationship they run to me every day with joy. Their communication with me is built upon my relationship as their father.
All communication with God begins with recognizing our relationship with Him. Christians approach God as Father because we have been adopted as sons and daughters through the Spirit of God (Rom. 8:15). The foundation of all prayer is grounded in our intimate and personal relationship with our heavenly Father. We should run to Him in prayer with delight because He loves us and cares for us.
Jesus does not only encourage us to approach God as our Father, but also as our King as he taught us to pray, “your kingdom come, your will be done on earth as it is in heaven.” God is our Father King. He is intimate and personal showing His closeness to us, but also is holy and sovereign showing He is far above us. We come to our Father King for provision for our daily physical needs and for protection and deliverance from our daily spiritual battles. And as we approach our holy and sovereign Father King, we are reminded of our sinful separation and of the forgiveness that only He offers through Jesus Christ.
The Lord’s Prayer is the model for all prayer. We are taught who we are approaching, our Father King, and how we are to approach Him, with a loving, humble dependence. We are taught what to pray: for God’s will to be done, for His name to be honored as holy, for forgiveness of our sins, the power to forgive others, for daily provision and spiritual protection. Jesus wants us to see our dependence on God and God’s love for us, which should shape all our prayers to Him.
It would serve our souls to memorize the Lord’s Prayer and make it a consistent focus of meditation. If we want to learn to pray, then the Lord's Prayer is the best place to start.