When I worship, I think of my opening lines. Most of the time I call out to my Heavenly Father, following very much in the footsteps of how Jesus taught us to pray and how He lead in prayer Himself.
But David had some good opening lines too. I like this one in particular and am thinking about using it from time to time.
You are my king and my God;
you give victory to your people. – Psalm 44:4 GNT
I know about His power and His grace and I love the fact that He is my King. Who is mighty like God, who else do I worship and turn to for help? By virtue of His office, He comes and fights my battles for me. I think David captures an intercessory prayer here but he illustrates that such a prayer can only be prayed by someone who is sure of their personal interest in God and that God is their God before they can pray for the rest of the tired and tried family of the faithful.
It is the same point that David’s son Solomon was trying to make, challenging us to know God and be known by Him.
My lover is mine, and I am his;
he feeds his flock among the lilies. – Song of Solomon 6:3 GNT
Is this not the love of Christ shown in His life and death and revealed to you and I by the power of the Holy Spirit? Isn’t this the same kind of love that draws me out of myself, my cold and selfish nature, unworthy and unfaithful, and makes me think about God in the first place? Is it not true that we know He loves us much more than we love Him at first. His love is certain – the cross is evidence enough. Are we not afraid that we count on our excited feelings and that it could be a fleeting emotion? However, as life goes on, and by His grace I keep persevering in a life of prayer and faith, I sense a response of earnest love coming from me and it gives birth to hope. When I think of His eye being on me and that He knows my heart, I am in awe of Him and am filled with hope and peace. That is my prayer and I joy as He finds these places where He feeds me and fills me.
The preface of the Lord’s Prayer (contained in these words, Our Father which art in heaven), teaches us, when we pray, to draw near to God with confidence of his fatherly goodness, and our interest therein; with reverence, and all other childlike dispositions, heavenly affections, and due apprehensions of his sovereign power, majesty, and gracious condescension: as also, to pray with and for others. – Westminster Larger Catechism