The Worship Quote of the Week for (10/15/1996):

Matthew 6:5-13

Today's worship quote comes from Jesus' teaching on prayer - Sermon on the
Mount, Matthew 6:5-13 as found in THE MESSAGE. (Compare this with the King
James Version.)

And when you come before God, don't turn that into a theatrical
production either. All these people making a regular show out of their
prayers, hoping for stardom! Do you think God sits in a box seat?
Here's what I want you to do: Find a quiet, secluded place so you won't
be tempted to role-play before God. Just be there as simply and honestly as
you can manage. The focus will shift from you to God, and you will begin to
sense his grace.
The world is full of so-called prayer warriors who are prayer-ignorant.
They're full of formulas and programs and advice, peddling techniques for
getting what you want from God. Don't fall for that nonsense. This is your
Father you are dealing with, and he knows better than you what you need. With
a God like this loving you, you can pray very simply. Like this:

Our Father in heaven,
Reveal who you are.
Set the world right;
Do what's best -
as above, so below.
Keep us alive with three square meals.
Keep us forgiven with you and forgiving others.
Keep us safe from ourselves and the Devil.
You're in charge!
You can do anything you want!
You're ablaze in beauty!
Yes. Yes. Yes.

In prayer there is a connection between what God does and what you do.
You can't get forgiveness from God, for instance, without also forgiving
others. If you refuse to do your part, you cut yourself off from God's part.

- Matthew 6:5-13 from THE MESSAGE: The New Testament in Contemporary English,
by Eugene H. Peterson, NavPress, 1993.

[Ouch! Can Jesus really mean all of that?] Read on! Read on!


For the last three years I have been a happy subscriber to the MARS HILLS
TAPES, a bimonthly audio magazine of contemporary culture and Christian
conviction. The 90-minute cassettes are produced by Ken Myers, former NPR
correspondent and author of ALL GOD'S CHILDREN AND BLUE SUEDE SHOES. The
topics range from history to literature, from philosophy to art criticism,
from entertainment to politics -- always interesting, always intellectually
and spiritually challenging (for me).

Ken Myers has agreed to send a FREE SAMPLE TAPE to anyone who wants one. If
you are interested, call 1-800-331-6407 or send them an e-mail request at

The sample MARS HILL TAPE includes:
*Thomas Cahill, on his book HOW THE IRISH SAVED CIVILIZATION
*Mark Noll, on the history of evangelical anti-intellectualism
*Paul Davies, the physicist who won the 1995 Templeton prize
*William Lane Craig, on problems in Davies' worldview
*Alan Jacobs, on the moral dumbing down of Louisa May Alcott's novel in the
movie version of LITTLE WOMEN
*Ken Myers, on MARSALIS ON MUSIC, a book and video series on music
*John Hodges, on the influence of Russian Orthodoxy in the music of John
*Kathleen Murphy, on Ingmar Bergman's films

Enjoy! Have a great week,

Chip Stam