Some things we learn end up being major slices of the lens through which we see all of life. For me, there are certain truths which emerge from Scripture that do that same in terms of understanding the whole of the Bible and Scriptural Christianity. Some of these I’ve assembled over time and for lack of a better title, have called them “The Principles”. The list is not exhaustive, and continues to grow. But I am sharing what I have so far in hopes of them being and encouragement and as a means of perhaps bringing clarity to some things that might be a bit fuzzy.
Today’s Principle is #4 on my list, and it is: The Lord’s prayer is essential for tuning the heart in all things. It is God’s paradigm.
Every instrument needs tuned regularly. From pianos to tympani, violins to bass guitars, trumpets, tubas oboes and piccolos. Every musician tunes his or her instrument before they attempt to play anything on it. And if they do not, it isn’t long before they cannot play any melody consistently, recognizably or especially in concert with any other instrument. The tuning process is absolutely imperative. It is no less so with the human soul.
Christians are instruments. We were created to be joyfully and skillfully breathed through by the Spirit of God in producing praises of the highest order. Transcendent music of the heavenlies. Sometimes He strums us, and other times He uses the bow of circumstance to cause our heart string to resonate with the beauty of His touch. He will blow more softly or more forcefully as both the instrument and the particular passage in the piece being played requires. He will sometimes pluck strings, and other times elongate the slide, press the sustain pedal or use sticks on the snare.
Whether we are to be used as instruments of praise in a solo passage, or with the rest of the orchestra in concert – we need to be tuned. We need to have the same foundational starting note and be able to work within the same chord structure. And the 7 pronged tuning fork put before us for us to tune to – I would advance, is the Lord’s Prayer. Nothing so completely and sweetly orders the whole frame of heart and mind as to tune first and foremost to:
- Our Father, is the God of Heaven. We are His dear children, and He has begotten us out of the depths of His eternal Triune love. He who rules and reigns over us, brought us forth to know Him who is the fountain of every blessing.
- That He has made us to bear His image, and uniquely equipped us above every other creature in the universe to comprehend and stand in awed admiration at His revealed beauty in Christ Jesus. To hallow His name.
- To live under His beneficent Lordship, wallowing in the lush oceans of His holiness, immensity, omnipotent, omnipresent, omniscient glory in mercy and grace untold. To bring the whole of our being under His loving hand, and to desire that Kingship to be extended everywhere.
- To remain ever aware that nothing could be of higher blessing to Him and to us than for His will to be unopposed in even the slightest way in any place or by anything.
- To look to Him in absolute confidence that our souls are to be fully sated on the Bread of Life He has sent down in the person of His Son. To feast afresh and anew on Him every day.
- To walk in the most tender, intimate and wondrous fellowship – jealously guarding lest anything hinder or defile that closeness in any way – always keeping short accounts with Him in seeking forgiveness which is never denied for any offense.
- And to recall that our own hearts are desperately wicked, and easily lured by the siren song of the Tempter. To look to Him then to lead us away from where our own erring feet may go, and deliver us from the snares the Wicked One has set for us.
To live always in this frame – is to be an instrument ready for the Master’s service, to delight Him and to be fitted for the song we were created to fill the universe with. And it is joy.