The Lord’s Prayer Backwards
One of the women I sat with at my retreat last week, mentioned a pastor reciting the Lord’s Prayer backwards, phrase by phrase. We took the challenge – not from memory though, we had to write it out first – to pray these words in reverse order.
Though the meaning is still there, different nuances and emphasis arise when saying this beloved prayer back to front. Maybe the words gained energy since I had to think what I was saying instead of relying solely on memory.
The phrase from the Lord’s Prayer that struck me the most was “Thy will be done on earth.” I usually say it more like: “thy will be done…on earth as it is in heaven.”
Taking the time with the Lord’s Prayer also reminded me about the pattern of prayer that Jesus taught us. I noticed that personal petitions – deliver us from evil, forgiveness and daily bread are all sandwiched in the middle between honor and praise for God.
I know I often start my prayers with my concerns, whining, fears, intercessory prayers for others and some thankfulness thrown in to sweeten my words. Praising God in my daily prayers comes as an afterthought. I now see Jesus showing us the arrangement – praise and adoration – personal petitions – praise and adoration.
Read the Lord’s Prayer backward and see what you discover:
For ever and ever
The power and the glory,
For thine is the kingdom.
But deliver us from evil
And lead us not into temptation.
As we forgive them that trespass against us
And forgive us our trespasses.
Give us this day our daily bread.
As it is in heaven
Thy will be done on earth.
Thy Kingdom come.
Hallowed be thy Name,
which art in heaven,
What do you think? Notice anything new?
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