Weekly Devotion by Pastor Tim Smith
If we Lutherans are right that "we are captive to sin and cannot free ourselves," and if Martin Luther was on target with his definition of sin as "curved in on ourselves," then it's little wonder that we are consumers. Consumers with voracious appetites. Feed the self! It's all about me!
Though our spiritual growth and maturity point us to the two great truths in the universe, namely 1)There is a God and 2)You're not it, our all-consuming consumerism creeps into our religious life as well. We equate church "membership" of a church with certain privileges and perks such as image and status in a community, not to mention entitlement to baptisms, weddings, funerals, and pastoral care.
Of course we don't always get what we want! Sometimes it's "yes," sometimes it's "no," and often it's "wait." Jesus gives us this model prayer to help us guide our re-orientation and subsequent choices within the context of our relationship with and the will of the Father who loves us.
So enough of consumerism! Prayer is our turning to and deferring to God precisely because we cannot ultimately control or manipulate our world or God. Prayer is getting outside of ourselves not so much to inform God about what we want but to be attentive to and transformed by what God has in store for us.
Prayer: Abba, Father, free us from our preoccupation with self and our consumerist ways even toward you, Help us to turn to you, and in nurturing that relationship through the communication of both expressing ourselves and listening, change us. We pray in the name of the one who invited us and taught us to pray, Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.