March 17, 2013

When Jesus prays, pleading is not necessary

Unity is when I say to my husband, “We should go visit…” and he says, “I was just thinking the same thing. This is what prayer in the name of Jesus should be. I say the words, and those words are a reflection of what He is already thinking.

For these days, I’m reading a prayer that Jesus prayed. When He talks with His Father, He is not trying to persuade Him to do something new or different. He is at one with the Father, therefore His prayer reflects the plan of God. With that in mind, these words reveal how God thinks about my relationship with Him.

All mine are yours, and yours are mine, and I am glorified in them. And I am no longer in the world, but they are in the world, and I am coming to you. Holy Father, keep them in your name, which you have given me, that they may be one, even as we are one. (John 17:10–11)

First, I belong to Jesus and to the Father, even to the Holy Spirit. Each has functions that are needful, yet some days what the Father does fits my situation. I cry out “Abba, Father” as a child looking for His help and leadership. Other days, I struggle with temptation and sin and need the Savior, or I battle discouragement and need the comfort of the Holy Spirit. They are the same God who cannot be divided into parts, and I belong to all of who and what God is, and am cared for by Father, Son and Holy Spirit.

Second, it is the intention of God that Jesus is glorified in me. Most of the time I am oblivious to this, but now and then someone says something to that effect, or I’m aware that God is pleased with me. I’d rejoice if this happened all the time, but am content to leave that to Him. Glorifying God is something like being a mirror. When He stands close to me, He is reflected to others. The best I can do is stay available with all the dirt cleaned off so that His reflection is as clear as possible.

Third, the visible presence of Jesus is not here on earth right now, but when Jesus prayed, He asked that the Father would keep me and other Christians in His name, guarding and protecting us as individuals, but more so as His Body. He and the Father agree that there be no fragmentation between His children. We are not to fight over anything or compete with one another. He isn’t looking for clones, but for unity in our diversity and harmony even when we don’t see eye to eye.
Imagine a room filled with children all drawing a picture of a house. No two houses look the same, yet there is agreement on the subject. We don’t argue who makes the best expression or who has picked the best colors, size of house, or the type of roof put on it. Instead, we admire each other’s work and cheerfully encourage the diversity of workmanship in rendering the same subject and reaching the same objective.  

The heart of God is as a parent caring for His children. The children are like Him, and because His visible presence is no longer here, He wants us to be united. When we are, we reflect to the world what He is like; a God who agrees with Himself and who jointly delights in His family. Jesus intercedes for us asking that this happens, but He does not have to plead — because God is One God.

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