And he said to them, When you pray, say, Our Father which are in heaven, Hallowed be your name. Your kingdom come. Your will be done…
The spirit of adoption is shed abroad in our hearts, and its cry is "Abba, Father." Now I need not say, I am sure, that of all feelings in the world there is none which is so likely to exhibit itself by outward signs and proofs as this — none so impossible to conceal, and of the existence of which, in consequence, we need have so little doubt. In the first place, then, let us see what proofs there may be of this love of God within us I First, as a matter of course, like any other passion or strong feeling which takes possession of us, it will be constantly present to us. Let the urgent business be over, and the burthen, so to say, removed from the mind, it returns like an unstrung bow instantly to its own bent. It delights to recover its liberty, and those beloved thoughts which for the moment had been driven into the background, resume their natural place, and become the first without an effort. Thus it is, as we all know, that the man of pleasure finds thoughts of pleasure uppermost; he does not seek for them; they come. The man whose heart is set on gain finds worldly speculations occupying him whether he will or not, I believe without exception, and so on through all the varieties of human pursuit! The favourite thought comes! Now this is what I mean in regard to God. In all the intervals which our worldly occupations leave, which in those whose hearts are not given up to them, are very many, it is the thought of our heavenly Father which presents itself most naturally and unaffectedly to us. Secondly. There is another principle which flows naturally out of this constant presence of the thought of God in our secret souls, and it is one of the most delightful, if not the most so, which comes out of those treasures of grace which enrich the converted soul, even the feeling of trust, an entire confidence without reserve or drawback, in Him whom we love. It is just that sort of reliance, without check or a doubt of suspicion, which you see in an innocent child towards an affectionate parent. Thirdly. Another proof of the love of God, as a real living principle within us, is the readiness with which men encounter difficulties, or make what the world calls sacrifices of gain or pleasure, in order to further the holy will of Him whom they serve. Fourthly. Another evidence of the love of God or not, is the delight, or otherwise, with which the soul traces out in all things the signs of God's presence, and the proof of His manifold mercies towards us. Finally, there is another sign of this love of God, which is, perhaps, the strongest and best of all. I mean love to other men's souls, and a longing for their eternal happiness.
(J. Garbett, M. A.)
Parallel VersesKJV: And he said unto them, When ye pray, say, Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done, as in heaven, so in earth.