In the midst of the Sermon on the Mount, Jesus takes time to instruct his followers how to pray (Matthew 6:5-13). Through this prayer, Jesus gives a model on our approach, attitude, and priorities we having in rightly communing with the Father. Its interesting to note that Jesus begins with the address, “Our Father....” Have you ever noticed that the first person singular is absent from the Model Prayer? We do not pray, “My Father.....give me this day my daily bread....forgive me my debts.....lead me not into temptation.”
In this Jesus reminds us that our approach to God, our obedience to God, even our relationship with God is never solely about "me". It is never separated from “we.” When I sin, we sin. When I grow as a believer, we grow as believers. I cannot rightly seek God’s provision for my life is I’m not seeking it for others.
We live in a wonderful nation that has been blessed by God in so many ways. We ought always express our gratitude for God’s provision and wealth that we so readily enjoy. Yet we need to be aware of our American cultural mythology that elevates rugged individualism to the point that we think we can live isolated from everyone else. Unfortunately, the idea that "I" can be okay with God apart from my relationships with others has crept into the church. This is not the faith God has given his people. We must always keep in mind that throughout the Scripture we see God saving persons to make a people for himself.
As Christians our concern begins with our own relationship with God and personal responsibility before God. However, if we follow the teaching and example of our Savior, we quickly move to a deep regard for the body of Christ and to the world who needs Jesus so desperately. I cannot pray rightly for me unless I pray for us. I cannot pray effectively for my family unless I pray fervently for God’s family. I cannot seek a full and proper relationship with Christ unless I seek to share him with others who live around me. I cannot pray, “My Father....,” and follow the instruction of Jesus in prayer. I must always pray, “Our Father.....” Excuse me, we must always pray "Our Father....."