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The Apostle Paul tells us that, as believers – born of water and the spirit, we are citizens of the Kingdom of Heaven. Normally a citizen of a certain country will display characteristics of the country from which they come. For instance, as South Africans, if we were to visit Japan we would immediately be seen as different. We would tend to live the lifestyle that we are accustomed to. So, as citizens of the Kingdom of God, should we not then display the characteristics of the Kingdom of heaven while we are here on the earth?
Part of our mission on earth is to represent our real (and permanent) home – the Kingdom of God. We are like small agents, if you like, of the Kingdom. Our ‘head office’ would desire us to represent the Kingdom as best we can all through our day. It really means that we should ‘be about our Father’s business. Yes – we do need to make sure that certain needs are met for our life here, but those efforts should not consume us to the point where we are not able to perform our Kingdom duties.
Sometimes we get concerned that we are not doing enough for the Lord. We should know that God wants to work THROUGH us and not so much for us to ‘work’ FOR HIM.
We all have people around us during the course of our day and so the opportunity presents itself to pray for them… even if we may not feel like it! If we think about it – these are God ordained opportunities.
As Jesus is our teacher, it’s interesting to look at the way He prayed to the Father. The prayer of Jesus for His disciples is the example that Jesus gives us to pray for those around us, yet we seem to get caught up in the busyness of our day and then when we’re moved to pray for those around us, it’s normally a quick “Lord, please do this or please do that…” praying mostly what WE think is best for others and situations. Please don’t get me wrong… it’s great that we talk to God and call on His name, so we should never stop doing that. However, let’s have a quick look at how Jesus prayed:
Joh 17:9 “I pray for them. I do not pray for the world but for those whom You have given Me, for they are Yours.
Joh 17:11 “…Holy Father, keep through Your name those whom You have given Me, that they may be one as We are.
Joh 17:13 “… that they may have My joy fulfilled in themselves.
Joh 17:15 “I do not pray that You should take them out of the world, but that You should keep them from the evil one.
Joh 17:17 “Sanctify them by Your truth. Your word is truth.
Joh 17:20 “I do not pray for these alone, but also for those who will believe in Me through their word;
Joh 17:21 “that they all may be one, as You, Father, are in Me, and I in You; that they also may be one in Us, …
Joh 17:23 “… that they may be made perfect in one,
Joh 17:24 “…(they) may be with Me where I am, that they may behold My glory which You have given Me;
Joh 17:26 “… that the love with which You loved Me may be in them, and I in them.”
This is really an amazing prayer. Very different to how we would normally pray for others – wouldn’t you agree?
Children need to learn to talk – and that’s a daily process – sentences and words grow steadily, becoming more and more meaningful. In our prayer life with God, we’re just the same. Prayer is nothing more than speaking to God. As we get to know the Lord more, so He shows us deeper things about Him. Prayer is one of those things.
Jesus encourages us to “ask in His name” when we pray. Praying in the name of Jesus means to pray in the character of Jesus – to pray what His heart is in a given circumstance – not necessarily what WE think should be asked for.
How do we get to know His character? By reading about Him in His word, sharing time with other believers in fellowship and by praying together with each other as well as on our own. As we do this, we will learn God’s will for circumstances and people, and then ask Him accordingly.
Why not open this example of Jesus’s prayer in John 17 right now and sit quietly for a few minutes? Speak the words aloud as you think of all those you would like to pray for. It will be very different in the beginning, but we get used to things as we practice.
Praying ‘in HIS name’ is very different from praying in our name.
Enjoy your time with the Master this week as He reveals His heart to you. Until next time…be blessed.
From: “…time with the Master…”
If you feel this article has value, please send this link to others, Writings are meant for people, not for dormant files in our computers, and very often when we share them, it results in positive changes in the lives of individuals and communities.
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