9 To some who were confident of their own righteousness and looked down on everyone else, Jesus told this parable: 10 “Two men went up to the temple to pray, one a Pharisee and the other a tax collector. 11 The Pharisee stood by himself and prayed: ‘God, I thank you that I am not like other people—robbers, evildoers, adulterers—or even like this tax collector. 12 I fast twice a week and give a tenth of all I get.’ 13 “But the tax collector stood at a distance. He would not even look up to heaven, but beat his breast and said, ‘God, have mercy on me, a sinner.’ 14 “I tell you that this man, rather than the other, went home justified before God. For all those who exalt themselves will be humbled, and those who humble themselves will be exalted.” (Luke 18:9 – 14)
As reminder, the theme for our 40 days journey this year is Our Identity. Last week we had a blessed time considering how the Disciplines of Bible Study and Spiritual Warfare relate to our identity. This week we focus on the Disciplines of Prayer and Fasting, starting with Prayer.
In the passage above, Jesus uses a parable to provide a stinging rebuke to self-righteous and judgmental people. Interestingly, the parable illuminates the power of a humble and honest conversation about identity when praying.
Please prayerfully reflect on the Bible verses above.
Something to think about:
When you pray, how honest are you with God about who you are? Why does this matter?