At the risk of irreverent over-analysis, I created a pie chart out of the Lord’s Prayer. I find the visual representation of the prayer that Jesus taught us helpful as I consider the slices of my prayer pie. Maybe you will too.
Jesus said, “This, then , is how you should pray:‘Our Father in heaven, hallowed be your name, your kingdom come, your will be done on earth as it is in heaven. Give us today our daily bread. Forgive us our debts, as we also have forgiven our debtors. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from the evil one.'” Matthew 6:9-13
The first four phrases of the Lord’s Prayer are fully focused on God and His kingdom. (The shades of blue in the prayer pie below.) The final three give attention to our need for spiritual forgiveness and protection. (Red slices below.) In between is one six word sentence that addresses our material needs. (The screaming yellow slice.)
It dawns on me that only one of the eight thoughts in the Lord’s Prayer has anything to do with my physical needs for this earthly life, and yet that single slice receives a disproportionate emphasis in my prayers.
My prayer pie looks more like the following:
I plan to give God a much bigger slice of my prayer pie.
How do you slice yours?
Hi Judy! I wanted you to know that I preached this morning at a small church (following strict COVID precautions) and I opened my message with your Lord’s Prayer pie charts. I don’t have a color printer so I made 2 pie charts using my scrapbooking paper. After this, my message was about one of the apostle Paul’s prayers. Later today, or it could end up in the next day or two, I will post my message and a photo of my pie charts. THANK YOU.
You are quite welcome, Laura! I’m glad it was helpful, and I wish you a Happy New Year!
Hi Judy👋🏻 Really love this pie chart idea for teaching.
Thanks to Laura for sharing the link to your site . Thanks for helping us to examine our prayer life and pointing us to Christ. Looking forward to read your blogs @laura @Judy.
I created an illustration drawing last night to post on IG inspired by your writings ☺️
That is wonderful, Stella! So glad you found it useful.
Reblogged this on Enough Light and commented:
I’ve blogged a couple times on Enough Light about our lopsided prayers that just don’t match up to prayers in the Bible. This post from Judy at the blog “Connecting Dots…to God” really brings this point home with her prayer pie chart! The post is from 2013 but a timeless one. I hope you will read it, and contemplate your pie chart.
Hi Judy, you don’t blog as much as in the past but I am so glad you keep your content up. (I’ve seen bloggers take their site down entirely, and I was disappointed as they had worthwhile content.) I’ve blogged on our lopsided prayers too, but this pie chart really brings it home! Be encouraged that I am encouraged and challenged by this post from 2013!
Thank you for your encouraging words! I don’t have time to blog as much as I used to, but I’m not willing to give it up entirely. Happy New Year!
Reblogged this on Reflections in the WORD and commented:
Thought provoking article… read and reconsider
I fear… no, no, I know my prayer life is divided very similar to the second chart. Only, being truthful, it probably applauds my prayers moreso than even it should. By the way, if you and yours haven’t seen the films “Dispatches From the Front,” I highly recommend them (mine came from Amazon). These documentaries carry the watcher deep into the foreign mission field, and the thing that is highlighted most as I am watching them is the prayer lives of these missionaries and the people of these lands. These fims may make my most-life-changing-contribution award winner for the year. They are fascinating and well worth the watch. Finally, thanks for the nod toward the SK novel. I see already what you alluded to. Many blessings!
Love this article!
The pie-chart idea is novel and makes an excellent visualization to bring the point across. I can see my prayer-pie-chart needs a LOT of work! Thanks for sharing.
(Plan to post a link to it on the RitW Facebook page.)
Glad you like the…ahem…convicting visual. (I’m speaking for myself!) Thanks for stopping by, and welcome to Connection Dots to God!
Judy, I’m so glad I stopped to visit your blog. I didn’t know you wrote on prayer, too! Praise God! I enjoyed reading your post. I love how Jesus’ prayer starts off with fully focusing on God and His kingdom. That’s something I’m trying to remember in my prayers before I start sharing all my needs with Him. Thank you for reminding us what Jesus taught us about how to pray!
Judy, I don’t think this is irreverent. Plus it says a lot, and yes, I too want to slice my prayer pie differently. Imagine serving pie to guests, and the HUGE yellow slice going to yourself. Yikes!
Thank you, Judy, for breaking it down for us, so we can get a look see at what’s going on. I think I plain need to be praying more! And praising too! God bless you as you remain undividedly His!
Another good blog, Judy. I also enjoy reading the comments. jael’s modern beatitude is good, too. I find myself thanking God a lot for little things throughout the day. He probably likes that.
This is way to funny! I love this analogy and my prayer life has much more yellow than yours. The good thing is, God knows my weaknesses and still loves me I think! I will never think of the Lord’s prayer the same again! Thank you so much!!!
Yes, God surely still loves us even when our prayers scream yellow:) You are so right, Helen, he knows us, he knows our needs, and he loves us. That puts me in the “blue” zone of confident praise in a hurry! Enjoy this sunny Friday, Helen!
Pastor Robt Morris (Gateway Church–Southlake, TX) recently did a great teaching on the Lord’s Prayer. Not to brag, but I’m thinking I mostly do thanking and praising, followed by requests for His help–for myself, and others. Throughout the day, I’m jabbering to Him about “trivia”–I guess it likely includes all the stuff in the pie chart. I like Larry’s answer a lot, and would have to agree; because, since He inhabits our praise, I can feel confident of His Presence 24/7–and that all my needs, including forgiveness, are well covered. Happy Friday, Judy–God bless you BIG! love, Jael-caddo
I like Larry’s answer too:) I find myself making a distinction between praise, which I regularly do, and prayer directed toward the coming of God’s kingdom and the fulfillment of his will. That is a nuance I hadn’t thought about. I love the thought of you and God conversing all day long, and I think He does too:) And a happy and blessed Friday to you too!
Maybe there should be an additional “modern” Beatitude: Blessed are the “jabberers” to God, for they will be continually nourished by His company.
Love this! 🙂
An interesting thought & way to look at the Lord’s prayer.
On average, I probably spend two-third’s of my prayer time praising God. The rest is allocated here, there, and everywhere. But if my time is cut short on a particular day, I spend 99% of the time in praise. My reasoning: it’s easier to have requests granted when you’re inside the gates and in His presence than it is standing outside and passing notes through a peephole.
Beautifully expressed, Larry. I love the picture of residing within the gates as contrasted with peeking in through a peephole. Perfect! Thanks, Larry!
I loved this too!
I love the chart. The visual helps me to see where I diverge from the Lord’s priorities.
So glad! Thanks Peter!