I had the opportunity to speak in chapel at Heritage Christian Academy yesterday — great school, great students, great staff. This is a thumbnail of what I shared:
You can tell quite a bit about a person by how they pray. Jesus prayed. He performed miracles, taught truth, revealed the Father, and even joined in a few parties. All of it came from a life of prayer. Right before His arrest, Jesus prayed. We can read it in John 17.
So… What did Jesus pray about? Well, among other things…
Jesus prayed for you.
He prayed for you and I to be united in Him. He prayed for us to know His glory. He prayed that we would know His love from the inside out.
John 17:20ff – My prayer is not for them alone. I pray also for those who will believe in me through their message, that all of them may be one… I want those you have given me to see my glory, the glory you have given me… Righteous Father… I have made you known to them, and will continue to make you known in order that the love you have for me may be in them and that I myself may be in them…
Unity — which can only come from all of us looking at Jesus together, which requires that we stop looking at ourselves, at others, at distractions. We must fix our eyes on Jesus. Nothing else unites like He does. He prayed for us to be united. Our unity in Him sends a message to the world: only God could do that!
Glory — Jesus is glorified, not because He was a hot-shot miracle worker and snappy teacher. It’s because of His humility, submission, obedience, and love. To know the glory of Jesus is to live like Him, which has nothing to do with how awesome we are. He prayed for us to know His glory. It seems backwards, but the way of Jesus is humility, which is glorious in the Kingdom of God.
Love — It’s easy to feel unloved, especially if we have a heavy weight on us because of guilt, shame, remorse, etc. God is love. God does love. In His love, He rescues us from sin. In His love, He refines us and makes us more like Jesus, who gave Himself in love. Jesus prayed for us to know His love from the inside out. Much more than something to be talked about, His love can be experienced at the very core of who we are. This changes everything.
How does Jesus pray for us? He prays for unity, glory, and love. May we set our minds on things above as the prayer of Jesus unfolds in our lives.