We say the Lord’s Prayer so often that we usually do not pay attention to what we are saying, but each word is carefully chosen and filled with meaning. I know a man who, faced with imminent death from cancer, decided to go through the Lord’s Prayer word by word. A week later he was still on the first two words, as if he had all the time in the world.
Here is a short summary of what he said:
Look at the word “father.” God created us and takes care of us. He is a good and loving father. Now consider the word “our.” Who does this include? Well, God created the whole universe, even the tiniest particles so far away that the strongest telescope can’t detect them. Since God created all of us, then everyone and even everything in the universe has God for its heavenly father. That makes these my brothers and sisters. Not only are everyone on this planet, but even the rocks on the farthest planet are my kin. Yes, even the rocks are my brothers. We are all connected by God, our Father. We are all family. How wonderful is this? Knowing this brings a profound peace and joy.
Wouldn’t it be a blessing to reflect prayerfully on each word in the Lord’s Prayer this Lenten season, listening to the nuances and implications?