Ellen G. White Writings

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From the Heart, Page 19

The Model Prayer, January 7

Lord, teach us to pray. Luke 11:1.

The world's Redeemer frequently went away alone to pray. On one occasion His disciples were not so far away but that they could hear His words. They were deeply impressed by His prayer, for it was charged with vital power that reached their hearts. It was very unlike the prayers which they themselves had offered, and unlike any prayers which they had heard from human lips. After Jesus had joined them again, they said to Him: “Lord, teach us to pray, as John also taught his disciples.” ...

It means much to pray to our Heavenly Father. We come to lay our imperfect tribute of thanksgiving at His feet in acknowledgment of His love and mercy, of which we are wholly undeserving. We come to make known our wants, to confess our sins, and to present to Him His own promises....

Jesus has given to us a prayer in which every expression is full of meaning, to be studied and brought into practical life.... It is a prayer that expresses the essential subjects that we need to present to our heavenly Father....

In the Lord's Prayer, solidity, strength, and earnestness are united with meekness and reverence. It is an expression of the divine character of its Author....

Long prayers in a congregation are tedious to those who listen, and do not prepare the hearts of the people for the sermon which is to follow. The prayer of Christ was in marked contrast to these long prayers with their many repetitions. The Pharisees thought that they would be heard for their much speaking, and they made long, tedious, drawn-out prayers....

The model prayer of Christ is in marked contrast to the prayers of the heathen. In all false religions, ceremonies and forms have been substituted for genuine piety and for practical godliness....

Christ reproved the scribes and the Pharisees because of their self-righteous prayers.... Prayers of this order, that are made to be heard of men, call down no blessing from God.... But humility is always recognized by Him who has said, “Ask, and it shall be given you; seek, and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you.”—The Review and Herald, May 28, 1895.

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