Teach Us to Pray

The disciples of Jesus Christ asked Him to teach them how to pray. This pattern of prayer that He gave to them, that we now reverently call the Lord’s Prayer, was recorded by both Matthew (Matthew 6:5-15) and Luke (Luke 11:1-13) in the New Testament. There is much to learn about prayer from these two chapters. I know when we pray with faith in the name of Jesus Christ that we can truly communicate with our Heavenly Father. It’s as real as calling Him the phone. Every sincere prayer we offer will be answered someday.

After we moved from Londonderry, New Hampshire to Boise, Idaho, I was feeling overwhelmed with everything that was going on in our family and our dire financial situation at the time. I decided I needed to go to the Boise Temple and seek for some specific answers to my prayers and find peace in my life. As I sat in the temple for a few hours that day, the word “importunity” kept coming repeatedly in my mind. My impression was to find that word in the Scriptures, understand what it meant, and do it. This was long before I had a personal computer and could look up such information on the Internet. I had a vague memory that I’d seen the word importunity in the New Testament before, and after much searching finally found that scripture. I looked up the definition of importunity in the dictionary, and was surprised at the meaning - urgent persistence in requesting or begging. I decided what the Lord was trying to tell me was to keep praying fervently for what I needed and always exercise great faith. So, I did. Eventually our family problems improved and our financial situation turned around completely. The lesson I learned was to never give up on the power of prayer.

Luke 11: 5-9

And he said unto them, Which of you shall have a friend, and shall go unto him at midnight, and say unto him, Friend, lend me three loaves;

For a friend of mine in his journey is come to me, and I have nothing to set before him?

 And he from within shall answer and say, Trouble me not: the door is now shut, and my children are with me in bed; I cannot rise and give thee.

I say unto you, Though he will not rise and give him, because he is his friend, yet because of his importunity* he will rise and give him as many as he needeth.

 And I say unto you, Ask, and it shall be given you; seek, and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you.

*Importunity: urgent persistence in requesting or begging