A Place to Pray: Reflections on the Lord's Prayer by Roberta C. Bondi

By Roberta C. Bondi

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Example text

I'd spent the night with a buddy the day before and we'd stayed up late eating junk food and watching television, so I was tired and kind of sick to my stomach. " Steven stopped and cleared his throat, then he went on. "After the preacher finished preaching, he had an altar call; anybody touched that day by his message was supposed to go up and dedicate his life to fulltime Christian ministry. ' We would keep on singing it, too, until someone came forward and answered God's call. "Well," he went on, "we sang all the verses, then we sang them all over again, and after that he held up his hand and had us stop.

It also allows me to back off from my own perfectionism, which is an expression of the conviction that I must earn the right to breathe the air. "Hallowed be your name," I pray: "help me know truly that I do not have to prove that I am a person of value. " The goal of the Christian life is not self-love for its own sake, however, but the love of God and neighbor, and praying this prayer in the memory of this beauty helps me do it. Let me give you an example or two. In the fall at the beginning of the school year, I am still sometimes horribly nervous when I stand up for the first time before my one-hundred-and-sixty-student church history class.

As you say in your last letter, it is hard for you to ask anybody, and not just God, for anything. You don't mean asking someone else to wish you luck or pray for you, either. " In your letter you also mention that you are beginning to suspect that this reluctance to ask other human beings for help may be connected with your difficulties in asking God for things in prayer, including even "your daily bread," if you let yourself think about it. You want me to tell you whether I think you might be right about this, and what my own experience has been.

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