Jesus Teaches Us to Pray

Jesus Teaches Us to Pray

DO YOU talk to Jehovah God?— He wants you to talk to him. When you talk to God, this is called prayer. Jesus often spoke to his Father in heaven. Sometimes he wanted to be alone when he talked to God. One time, the Bible says, “He went up into the mountain by himself to pray. Though it became late, he was there alone.”Matthew 14:23.

Jesus prayed when he was alone . . . and when he was with others

Where can you go to pray alone to Jehovah?— Maybe you can be alone to talk to Jehovah before you go to bed at night. Jesus said: “When you pray, go into your private room and, after shutting your door, pray to your Father.” (Matthew 6:6) Do you pray to Jehovah each night before you go to sleep?— You should do so.

Why should you listen carefully to prayers said at meetings?

Jesus also prayed when other people were with him. When his friend Lazarus died, Jesus prayed with others at the place where Lazarus had been laid. (John 11:41, 42) And Jesus would also pray when he had meetings with his disciples. Do you go to meetings where prayer is said?— There an older person will usually pray. Listen carefully to what he says because he is talking to God for you. Then you will be able to say “Amen” to the prayer. Do you know what it means to say “Amen” at the end of a prayer?— It means that you like the prayer. It means that you agree with it and that you want it to be your prayer too.

Jesus also prayed at mealtimes. He thanked Jehovah for his food. Do you always pray before you eat your meals?— It is good for us to thank Jehovah for the food before we start eating. Someone else may say the prayer when you eat together. But what if you eat by yourself? Or what if you have a meal with people who do not thank Jehovah?— Then you need to say your own prayer.

Do you always have to pray out loud? Or can Jehovah hear you if you say your prayer to yourself?— We can learn the answer from what happened to Nehemiah. He was a worshiper of Jehovah who worked in the palace of Persian King Artaxerxes. One day Nehemiah became very sad because he heard that the walls of Jerusalem, the main city of his people, were broken down.

When can you say a silent prayer, as Nehemiah did?

When the king asked Nehemiah why he was sad, Nehemiah first said a silent prayer. Then Nehemiah told the king why he was sad and asked him if he could go to Jerusalem to rebuild the walls. What happened?—

Yes, God answered Nehemiah’s prayer. The king said that he could go! The king even gave Nehemiah a lot of trees to use to build the walls. So God really can answer our prayers, even when they are silent.Nehemiah 1:2, 3; 2:4-8.

Now think about this. Should you bow your head when you pray? Should you get down on your knees? What do you think?— Sometimes Jesus got down on his knees when he prayed. Other times he stood up. And at times he lifted his head toward heaven as he prayed, as he did when he prayed for Lazarus.

So, what does this show?— Yes, this shows that the position you are in is not the important thing. Sometimes it is good to bow your head and close your eyes. At other times you may even want to get down on your knees, as Jesus did. But, remember, we can pray to God at any time during the day or night, and he will hear us. The important thing about prayer is that we really believe that Jehovah is listening. Do you believe that Jehovah hears your prayers?—

What can you talk to God about in prayer?

What should we say in our prayers to Jehovah?— Tell me: When you pray, what do you talk to God about?— Jehovah gives us so many good things, and it is right to thank him for them, isn’t it?— We can thank him for the food we eat. But have you ever thanked him for the blue sky, the green trees, and the pretty flowers?— He made those too.

Jesus’ disciples once asked him to teach them how to pray. So the Great Teacher did, and he showed them what were the most important things to pray for. Do you know what these things are?— Get your Bible, and open it to Matthew chapter 6. In verses 9 through 13, we find what many people call the Our Father or the Lord’s Prayer. Let’s read it together.

Here we learn that Jesus told us to pray about God’s name. He said to pray that God’s name be sanctified, or treated as holy. What is God’s name?— Yes, it is Jehovah, and we should love that name.

Second, Jesus taught us to pray for God’s Kingdom to come. This Kingdom is important because it will bring peace to the earth and make it a paradise.

Third, the Great Teacher said to pray for God’s will to be done on earth just as it is done in heaven. If we pray for this, then we should do what God wants.

Next, Jesus taught us to pray for the food we need for the day. He also said that we should tell God we are sorry when we have done things that are wrong. And we should ask God to forgive us. But before he will do so, we must forgive others if they have done something wrong to us. Is that easy for you to do?—

Finally, Jesus said we should pray that Jehovah God will protect us from the wicked one, Satan the Devil. So all of these are good things to pray to God about.

We should believe that Jehovah hears our prayers. Besides asking him to help us, we should keep thanking him. He is happy when we mean what we say in prayer and when we ask him for the right things. And he will give us these things. Do you believe that?—

More good counsel about prayer is found at Romans 12:12; 1 Peter 3:12; and 1 John 5:14.