Every group or community of people have words and rituals that are common to their life together. Scouts have pledges that proclaim their high ideals. Countries have national songs and pledges that unite them. Sororities and fraternities have rituals that all members must participate in to join. When Jesus was with his closest followers (the disciples), he gave them a prayer to pray that would help unite their hearts in love and point them all in the direction of kingdom living after he left them. Christian churches and communities of faith of every stripe and tradition have used this prayer in some fashion across the centuries. Commonly known as The Lord's Prayer, this prayer is learned by children in Sunday school and often prayed out loud, together, in Christian worship settings. As we examine "The Deeper Life | A Life of Prayer," we take a fresh look at this set prayer that has been close to the heart of Jesus followers for centuries. Words matter, and in The Deeper Life, words have the power to shape and guide our lives for God and for good. "So, when you pray, say" this... (Luke 11:2) Worship Link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eSAe8XlOPmw

Be Still

From as far back as most of us can remember, we've sought ways to take our music, conversations, and media with us wherever we go. For some of us it started with a transistor radio and change for a pay phone. And through the years we've moved through the evolution of technology to the place where we have every nearly form of communication and entertainment right in our pockets, with us 24/7. It's as though we do all we can to avoid silence. Silence has the power to unsettle us. It leaves us alone with our thoughts and fears. It offers up so many questions, and so few answers. What is there to be gained in the quiet? The Deeper Life (a life of prayer) is built on silence, but not for the sake of quiet alone. The Deeper Life is a life of quiet contemplation, purposeful silence, and intentional listening. The Deeper Life asks God to speak, and rests in the quiet to hear what God would say. Worship Link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=doTJaT2bDho

Expectations are powerful things. They influence our words, actions, planning, and hopes. Rarely will we put effort into cooking a meal, repairing a broken appliance, or entering a negotiation without the expectation of a positive outcome. We don't put energy into a relationship, time into learning a new skill, or effort into a team sport without the expectation of a meaningful connection, growth of some kind, or a win (at least occasionally!). What about our deeper lives of prayer? Do we pray with the expectation that God will bless us if we can check prayer off our list today? Or do we pray with the expectation that God will grant our prayerful wish list and solve our prayerfully presented dilemmas if we are diligent in presenting them properly? Scripture suggests that we pray with a thankful heart and attitude, expecting the good God we know and worship to be who God promises God will be. When we pray with alert minds and thankful hearts, we can always expect good things. Worship Link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1sUfWspnpUU

We learn in elementary school that big things often have even larger hidden foundations. A towering oak has a deep and wide root system. An iceberg only shows a small portion of itself above the water. And tall buildings have foundations that go deep into the ground to hold them stable and make them strong. But what of those people we see with strong faith, great confidence in God, and unfailing hope in the face of adversity? What do they have hidden away that makes them such resilient and joyful people? For people of faith, a deep and rich prayer life is what keeps them stable, grounded, hopeful, and peace-filled, in the good times and the bad. For followers of Jesus, the deeper life is a life of prayer. In July at Union Chapel Indy we explore the power and blessing of a deep and rich prayer life. Join us for worship in-person or online, Sundays, 10:30 a.m. Worship Link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GcOJbVw5o_w&t=3419s