Give us this day our daily bread.

Sermon Overview
 
Most kids who are taught to pray learn to pray either before bedtime or at the dinner table. They might say something like “God is great, God is good, let us thank him for our food.” Jesus teaches us to pray about our need for food, yet this prayer follows the first three requests – that God’s name be hallowed, that his kingdom come, that his will be done. Praying then for what we need, after we’ve settled the matter in prayer of who God is and what God wants, is the right thing to do. 
 
While “Give us this day our daily bread” was spoken to a primarily agrarian society, in which people felt a more direct sense of dependence on God for what they need, we can hear these words and feel like we are not sincere in asking this. Our fridges are often full. Our pantries are usually stocked. If not, food isn’t far from reach. But Scripture teaches us that we depend on God’s generosity for absolutely everything. God gave all the good things we have for food when he created the world. We did not invent our favorite foods. We found them already here. Nor did we give ourselves the ability to work, whether with our brains or our bodies, but we must certainly act on those abilities. Even that action is by God’s design, so we ultimately owe him all the praise when our daily needs are met.
 
Jesus also refers to himself directly as “the bread of life.” He means for us to understand that the kind of satisfaction we find from eating physical food should be an example of the greater spiritual satisfaction we enjoy through faith in Jesus alone for all that he promises to do for us. Jesus saves. Jesus forgives. Jesus heals. Jesus changes our character. Jesus protects us. When others try to claim our worship, Jesus alone satisfies as the one worthy of worship.
 
Questions for Discussion
 
Read Matthew 6:11
 
Have you ever felt really, really hungry? Could you imagine that as a known possibility on a near-daily basis? How might that affect the way you pray for daily bread?
 
What aspects of life are covered by this model prayer? Is there any need we shouldn’t bring to God?
 
Do you ever see your physical needs as unspiritual? Why or why not?
 
Read Matthew 6:25-34
 
How does this help you think about your needs in the future?
 
Read 2 Corinthians 9:6-11
 
If we pray for God to give to us, what should we be doing with our own gifts?

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