Father, every bit of the person You’d have me to be, I long to be.
“I pray for them. I’m not praying for the God-rejecting world but for those You gave Me, for they are Yours by right. Everything Mine is Yours, and Yours Mine.” (v 9-10 MSG)
You were so very near Your own death, Jesus; and in Your own conversation with Your Father, You had ME on Your mind. You prayed for several things that You desire to be a part of my life, because I belong to You and have chosen to follow You:
ETERNAL LIFE = KNOWING THE FATHER = KNOWING JESUS, THE SONFACE
“Now this is eternal life: that they may KNOW You, the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom You have sent.” (v 3, NIV)
Only by spending time with someone–talking, sharing, listening–can I get to know someone. People are so multifaceted and ever-changing that opportunities to learn and know folks rarely run out. You, Lord, are multidimensional (at the least!), with more to learn about You than our finite minds may be able to comprehend. However, in all Your vastness, immensity and grandeur, YOU desire for me to know You, to really get to know You. Thanks for calling me “friend” (John 15) and for taking steps to build that friendship. Guide me in making the necessary time throughout a day to turn my attention toward You and our relationship.
PROTECTION FROM THE EVIL ONE
“My prayer is not that You take them out of the world but that You protect them from the evil one.” (v 15)
“…protect them by the power of Your name…” (v 11 NIV)
When I am nestled close to Your heart and feasting on Your Word–seeking to know it and live it–that leaves little room for the Deceiver to mess with my mind and emotions, in order to affect my behavior. Father, indeed, protect me “from the evil one,” that thief who “comes only to steal and kill and destroy.” (John 10:10) Guard my heart, and fill me up with You. Protect me inside and out as I seek to know You and serve You.
“Sanctify them by the truth; Your Word is truth.” (v 17 NIV)
You’ve used the word “sanctify,” or originally, You would’ve used the Greek word for it, which means “set apart for sacred use” or “make holy.” Through Your Word, You make me holy. It serves as Your very own cleansing agent to set me apart so that You can use me. When I’m not in Your Word, the filth remains and my usefulness isn’t all it could be.
COMPLETE UNITY = MESSAGE TO THE WORLD
“May they be brought to complete unity to let the world know that You sent Me and have loved them even as You have loved Me.” (v 23 NIV)
You long for Your children to get along, to serve side-by-side, Lord. When we do, when we genuinely choose to accept one another’s differences of tradition, opinion and practice, the world can more clearly see that we’ve each been sent by You with a message it needs to hear (and SEE).
THAT I’D BE WITH YOU ONE DAY
“Father, I want those You have given Me to be with Me where I am.” (v 24 NIV)
Jesus, I still remember the first time I read this verse and realized what You were saying to Your Father in that moment. I remember weeping at the thought that YOU want ME to be with You where You are. The infinite God of all creation WANTS to spend time–no, wants all eternity!– with ME! Sometimes in the rough times of this human existence, when others who know me seem to want nothing to do with me, to be reminded that You ALWAYS enjoy, desire and long for my company is SUCH a gripping thought.
So–what shall we do together today, Lord?
YOU AND YOUR LOVE IN ME
“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.” (v 26 NIV)
Too often I think I put a lid on my heart and with a little slit in it that only lets Your love trickle inside (or so I fool myself to think). Perhaps, I’m afraid of too much at once … but all the while I long for Your love to consume me. If only I could hang onto the fact that You totally love me. IF only the feeling of knowing that Your love is in me, that YOU personally are in me could continually be what I experience.
Set a guard around my heart, so that the fruit of love, joy, and peace cannot be stolen, masked, or maligned by the enemy. Rip off the “lid” I try to keep on my heart and pour it on, Lord!! YOU fill me up … and when this vessel becomes full, I believe You’ll enlarge the vessel and pour in more of You, more of Your love!
Help me to surrender to You, Lord Jesus. May Your desires be my own:
- May I know You and Your Father intimately as I thankfully embrace Your gift of eternal life.
- May I be grateful for Your protection and may I entrust myself to You in the face or threat of the enemy.
- May Your Word clean me up continually and make me truly holy and set apart for Your use.
- May my attitude toward every other human being on this planet be altered to be aligned with Yours. May I see them through Your eyes alone.
- May I always look forward to and eagerly anticipate the Day I get to be with You.
- May Your love and presence be alive and evident in me as I surrender to Your work in me to make me just like Jesus.