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Maxims for our Children. The Lords Prayer, by Manatita
Meekness and Blessings
A Look at The Teachings of Jesus, The Christ
The Lord’s Prayer
The wise one sat thoughtfully on the sofa, content within himself, but nevertheless carefully deliberating over the best way, to present his life’s inner teachings to his two children. Seems a long time ago – some 25 years – since he walked away from the worldly life, and into one of abundant peace. Now, with Junior and Kanya both eagerly waiting to hear from him, he desired to teach them the path to inner freedom, in a simple way.
Naturally both him and Nishta, his loving wife, had taught them all their lives, and the children had responded in selfless and virtuous ways. They were very willing and totally loyal to their parents for ones so young. Still, Vikeka had long desired to teach them in a more formal way.
Looking up, he saw the sweet innocence in his young daughter’s face; the earnestness in his son’s eyes, as they sat opposite, patiently and attentively awaiting to hear his wise words. Smiling sweetly, as if suddenly walking upon a shining dawn, the wise one opened his mouth and began to speak:
Wise one: “Our Father, which art in Heaven, Hallowed be Thy name.” St. Matthew, 6:9. (Holy Bible, King James Version, Red letter edition).
Kanya: “Wonderful, daddy, wonderful! What does it mean?”
Wise one: “My daughter, God is not only the Father of our Lord Jesus, the Christ, but is our Father also. Jesus is giving us this wonderful news. Furthermore, by beginning this immortal prayer in this way, he is letting us know that our Father in Heaven comes first, and deserves our all. This is a message that is repeated throughout the Bible. Here are two examples, the second from the prophet Moses, in the Old Testament:
“Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, with all thy soul and with all thy mind. This is the first and great commandment.” St. Matthew, 22: 37-38.
“And thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thine heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy might.” Deuteronomy, 6:5.
Kanya: “Thank you, daddy.”
Wise one: “Our Lord continues to tell us that God is in Heaven.”
Junior: Where is Heaven, daddy?”
Wise one: “My son, the Christ has answered this Himself.”
“The kingdom of God cometh not with observation: Neither shall they say, Lo here! or, lo there! For, behold, the kingdom of God is within you.” St.Luke, 17:20-21.
Wise one: “Scripture teaches us that we are made in the image of God. (Genesis 1:27). Try to imagine a very beautiful country inside you, your spiritual being; in that country is a heavenly garden full of Light and Love. Our Lord has promised us a wonderful place in one of his many mansions.”
“Let not your heart be troubled … In my Father’s house are many mansions: if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you.” St. John, 14, 1-2.
Wise one: “Again, in encouraging and comforting words, He seeks to reassure us.”
“Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you … let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.” ibid, V.27.
Wise one: “So you see my son, Heaven is a place of beauty, peace and light. It is sometimes referred to as paradise, but this does not mean that it exists only when our bodies die. It begins in our hearts but is hidden from the eyes of others. Spiritual things are spiritually understood. Thus said the great apostle Paul.” (1 Corinthians, 2:13, 14).
Prayer and supplication
Junior: “Thank you, daddy.”
Wise one: “Now, my children, Jesus goes on to praise our Father. He is trying to show us adoration, reverence, sanctity and respect. ‘Hallowed be Thy name,’ He says.”
“We love our parents; you love me very much. But the love that men and women of God feel for Him, is infinitely greater. ‘Hallowed’ here, implies holiness. They cannot but feel amazement and wonder in His presence. So they are trying to give us a sense of God’s greatness, God’s love and God’s mercy. Do you understand my darling ones?”
Together: “Yes, daddy. It is now clear to us.”
Wise one: “Good. You two are as wise as you are loving. I shall now move on to the second sentence, of this sacred prayer.”
Wise one: “Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done on earth, as it is in heaven.” St. Matthew, 6:10
Wise one: “Shall I speak about this, my children?”
Both: “Yes, daddy. Go ahead. Please speak to us about this significant statement.”
Wise one: “The coming of the Kingdom is the essential message of the Gospel. Our Lord has prepared a better place for us, and he wants us to go there.”
“Repent ye: for the kingdom of heaven is at hand.” St. Mathew, 3:2.
Wise one: “Sending the twelve apostles forth, Jesus said: ‘And as ye go, preach, saying, the kingdom of heaven is at hand.” St. Matthew, 10:7
Wise one: “For inner happiness does not lie anywhere else. Not in money, not in material things.”
Wise one: The Christ says quite emphatically that we should not store up treasures for ourselves, that we cannot serve two masters.
“No man can serve two masters: for either he will hate the one, and love the other; or else he will hold to the one, and despise the other. Ye cannot serve God and mammon.” St. Matthew, 6:24.
Wise one: “Understood?”
Junior: “What is mammon?”
Wise one: “Becoming consumed by greed, attachments, vanity, worldly pleasures and desires.”
Kanya: “It is now clear to me, dad.”
Singing Our Lord's Prayer
Junior: “Tell us about ‘Thy will be done on earth, as it is in heaven.”
Wise one: “Excellent, Junior, excellent! This is the quintessence of the spiritual life.”
Kanya: “Quintessence, daddy?”
Wise one: “Yes, my daughter. By that I mean the essence, or rather the very soul of what our Lord was trying to tell us. To surrender ourselves to the Will of God, this is the highest prayer:
‘O Lord, if you want my efforts to be successful, then I am happy. If You do not want this action to succeed, if You want me to learn something important by experiencing failure while giving the experience of success to someone else, then I am equally happy. ‘My only wish is that Thy Will be done in and through me.”
Junior: “Wonderful daddy, wonderful!”
Kanya: “How I love this prayer, father. It is as if I have heard it before. Can you repeat the last line once more?”
Wiseman: “Sure, my child, sure. Your spiritual side has identified with this enchanting prayer; this lofty saying. I am saying that it is captivating and lofty because from long, long ago, a great many prophets and saints have uttered it. Its power has also helped them to become absorbed in God. Here it is again, my child:
‘My only wish is that Thy Will be done in and through me.”
“Thank you, father, thank you.”
Wise one: “The Christ himself taught us quite clearly that he worked in harmony with God’s Will.”
“I can of my own self do nothing: as I hear, I judge: and my judgment is just; because I seek not mine own will, but the will of the Father which hath sent me.” St. John, 5:30.
Wise one: “God is omnipresent, that is to say, He is always here, there and everywhere. He wants His Will to be done here on earth, as in the world within (heaven). His omnipresence is as stated thus.”
“And remember that I am always with you, until the end of time.” St. Matthew, 28:20. (God’s word ® translation).
Junior: “Speak to us of the third sentence of the prayer, dad.”
Junior: “Speak to us of the third sentence of the prayer, dad.”
Wise one: “Give us this day our daily bread.”
Kanya: “Great! I won’t have to be hungry, daddy.” (Excited).
“My daughter, it is good to pray to God to grant your daily needs. Satisfying your hunger is only one of them. Still, our heavenly Father knows our needs before we even ask. (St. Matthew, 6: 8.). Daddy will be extremely proud of you both, if you ask only for wholesome things from God. Ask not for a lighter burden, but for a stronger heart. Ask for a heart that cries for God, a self-giving life, and above all a life of unconditional surrender to His Will. Is that o.k., my children?”
Together: “Yes, daddy.”
The Wise one continues with the Lord’s prayer:
“And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors.” (ibid V.12).
Kanya: “Is this about forgiveness, father?”
Wise one: “Yes, my sweet one. Forgiveness from God is of the greatest importance in our lives. We need God’s forgiveness; God’s compassion, before we can actually forgive ourselves and forgive others. As God is good and kind to us, so too we should be good and kind to others. We need to ask for forgiveness for our weaknesses, and to forgive the weaknesses of others also. The great apostle John hints at this here:
“If a man says, I love God, and hateth his brother, he is a liar: for he that loveth not his brother whom he hath seen, how can he love God whom he hath not seen?” 1John, 4:20.
Wise one: “Forgiveness is of the utmost importance. We need to forgive ourselves and to forgive others also, as this helps us to make peace with God. It is exceptionally noble and beautiful to forgive the world.”
Wise one: “And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil: For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, forever. Amen.” (ibid V.13).
Junior: “Is temptation a bad thing, dad?”
Wise one continues to read: “All things are God’s, my son. So we can sing with the psalmist.”
‘The earth is the Lord’s and the fullness thereof; the world, and they that dwell therein.” Psalm 24:1.
Wise one: “It is His kingdom, His power and His glory. Knowing this will in time allow us to work, but not for the rewards of our actions. This means that we should always do our best, but remember that all belongs to God. By so doing, we can avoid the negative forces of desire, greed, ego, anger and attachment to things that belong to God.
Mom and dad gave you a place for shelter and warmth. But the house belongs to us, and one day we could ask you to leave. In the same way, while you may use God’s earth, do remember that it belongs to Him and that He may withdraw it any day, if He so pleases. The universe is God’s body, utilise it wisely.
Junior: (thoughtful). “I see, father, I see.”
Wise one: “Yes, my daughter?”
Wise one: (smiling) “O.K, my sweet. Let’s rest now. Let us have something to eat. Tomorrow we shall continue, and I will tell you a little about prayer. Today I have talked about the Lord’s Prayer. I am glad that you have understood me, but prayer itself is essential, without which it is difficult to make progress. Let us eat and then rest. Tomorrow we will talk further about this most important subject.”
– Manatita, 14th Decem